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Looking back: Woman almost buried alive, ice jams force evacuations and man kills wife on ISU campus

Looking Back

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IDAHO FALLS — EastIdahoNews.com is looking back at what life was like during the week of Jan. 17-23 in east Idaho history.

1900-1925

RIGBY — A Rigby mother was about to be “buried alive” after two physicians pronounced her dead, The Idaho Republican said on Jan. 19, 1912.

All the children “accepted the situation” except the youngest son, who insisted she was still alive. The physicians kept a “close watch over the remains to appease him,” while he went to Idaho Falls to find other physicians.

“When he reached home, twenty-four hours after the supposed demise, she was beginning to gasp and choke, and soon regained consciousness,” The Idaho Republican said. “She said she had been able to hear their conversation all the time, but powerless to move or speak, and was suffering from fear of being buried alive.”

1926-1950

PRESTON — A five-year-old boy survived being struck by a freight truck while riding his tricycle, The Preston Citizen reported Jan. 22, 1948.

Reed Carlson, son of Mr. and Mrs. A. G. Carlson, was crossing the intersection of Oneida and 2nd East Street when the truck, driven by Keith Hirschi, was turning south from Oneida Street.

“The boy was carried approximately 25 feet on the bumper of the truck and received cuts on the left side of the head and left ear from glass off the truck’s headlight,” the article states. “The tricycle was demolished.”

Hirschi, who was said to be driving slow, picked up the child and took him to the hospital. Carlson received “several stitches” in his head, and “after x-rays had been made,” he was released to go home.

1951-1975

BLACKFOOT — Ice jams in the Snake River forced Bingham County residents from their homes, according to the Idaho State Journal.

The paper wrote on Jan. 22, 1952, that the jams forced 20 people to leave their homes and seek shelter in the county courthouse the night before.

Sheriff Everett Goodwin said the ice jam extended for nearly eight miles from a point about two miles west of the Snake River bridge in a northeasterly direction.

“I don’t know if we’ll be able to get dynamite or if we’ll be able to find someone to explode it,” the sheriff said.

Floodwaters swept over fields along a two-mile stretch of the river. District Highway Engineer C. A. Kelly said Highway 20 between Blackfoot and Riverside was flooded near the bridge with two inches of water. However, he said water was draining from the road and, “the situation was not serious if something was done before nightfall.”

“Earlier a call had been sent to the naval ordinance plant in Pocatello and ORD headquarters for sufficient dynamite to open the river channel,” the Idaho State Journal mentioned.

It was thought the damage to farmland and homes would exceed more than $100,000.

1976-2000

POCATELLO — An Idaho Penitentiary inmate who admitted murdering his estranged wife asked for a trial, the Idaho State Journal reported on Jan. 20, 1977.

Lloyd C. Cobb, 44, murdered his wife Patricia in the president’s office at Idaho State University. Cobb said he was under the influence of prescription drugs when he pleaded guilty to shooting his wife on Oct. 1, 1975. Cobb was sentenced to life in prison.

“The drugs affected my ability to make a knowing plea,” Cobb said in an application for trial to the 6th District Court.

Cobb’s application for trial said he didn’t know the definition of second-degree murder when he entered the plea. It also said because he had been drinking whiskey and taking drugs at the time of the killing, he couldn’t have had the intent to kill required for second-degree murder, the paper wrote.

Authorities said Patricia, 38, an administrative assistant to then-acting university President Charles Kegel, was killed at work with three to five bullets fired from a .45 caliber pistol.

“After 13 years of marriage, she had filed for divorce from Cobb, a self-employed horse trainer,” the paper said.

A friend told the court that Patricia “feared for her life and took great care to conceal her address from her husband.”

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