Burns Fatal To War Vet
A noon-day fire yesterday claimed the life of
Andrew Downer, 26, at his home 2615 Remount Rd .
Downer a Southern Railway switchman and war veteran was fatally burned
fighting his way out of the house. He died at 1:50 o’clock this morning
in Memorial Hospital.
His wife Hazel and their infant daughter had left the home a few minutes
earlier and were at the home of a neighbor when the fire started. A
defect in the house’s oil heating unit was thought to have caused the
The Charlotte Fire Department responded to the alarm and was aided
by the Wilkinson Boulevard Volunteer Fire Department.
Downer who works at night and sleeps In the day groped his way to the
back door and was pulled from the flames by Thomas F. Page who summoned
an ambulance and the Fire Department. The Downer home was situated just
outside the city limits.
Downer a former Army paratrooper served with the 82nd Airborne Division
In European combat.
Mr. Downer was the son of Mrs. C.A .B .Hill and the late C B Downer
He was a graduate of Sharon High School.
Surviving are his wife Mrs. Hazel Hilton Downer, a daughter, Anita
Tresa Downer, mother, a brother Henry T Downer of Charlotte and three
sisters: Mrs. Roy Trull of Matthews, Mrs. Ralph Williams and Miss Willie
Mae Downer of Charlotte.
Funeral services will be conducted tomorrow afternoon at 3 o'clock
at Woodlawn Baptist Church. The Rev Clarence Propst and the Rev. W.
A. Gamble will officiate. Interment will be in Elmwood Cemetery.
Serving as active pallbearers will be Johnny Estridge, J. D. Swearingen,
William Hucks, Bradley Pincher Bill Carriker and Albert Helms Jr., Honorary
pallbearers will be Arthur Extrom, James Hutto, Harvey Gibham, Tommy
Ligon, Herman Porter, Vick Wallace, J. D. Brown and Robert Kistler The
body will remain at McEwen Funeral Home until time tor services.
[The Charlotte News Charlotte, North Carolina 05 Jan
1948, Mon • Page 13]
Funeral Rites Set
Services To Be Conducted For
Young Man Who Received Fatal
Burns When House Burned
Funeral services for Andrew Downer 26 of 2615
Remount road who died of burns received Sunday afternoon when his house
caught fire while he was asleep will be held this afternoon at 3 o'clock
at Woodlawn Baptist church Rev Clarence Propst and Rev W A Gamble will
Interment will be in Elmwood cemetery. The body will remain at McEwen
Funeral home until the hour of the service. Serving as active pallbearers
will be Johnny Ertridge, J. D. Swearingen, William Hucks, Bradley Fincher,
Bill Carriker and Albert Helms Jr. Honorary pallbearers will be Arthur
Extron, James Hutto, Harvey Bigham, Tommy Ligon, Herman Porter, Vick
Wallace, J. D. Brown and Robert Kistler.
A burial escort from Hornets Nest Post No 9 American Legion will be
in charge of the service at the grave in Elmwood cemetery under spiritual
leadership of Rev W A Gamble 'and the commander-ship of Lewis Kale.
The Wilkinson Boulevard fire department reached the scene of the fire
first and had the blaze' almost extinguished when the Charlotte fire
department arrived. A defect in the oil heating unit of the house is
believed to have caused the blaze. Downer had made his way to the back
door and was pulled from the flames by Thomas F. Page who summoned the
ambulance and the fire department.
Surviving Mr. Downer are his wife Mrs. Hazel Hilton Downer, a daughter
Anita Teresa Downer, a brother Henry T Downer of Charlotte, his mother
Mrs. C. A. B. Hill and three sisters Mrs. Roy Trull of Matthews Mrs.
Ralph Williams and Miss Willie Mae Downer of Charlotte
[The Charlotte Observer, (Charlotte, NC, 6 Jan 1948,
Tue, Page 19]
Headstone or Grave Marker Application
documents Andrew having served in I Company, 508th PIR
(courtesy of "DSM"
Grave marker for Andrew Downer in Section
Y, Elmwood Cemetery, Charlotte (Mecklenburg county), North Carolina.
shows that Andrew was employed by the Sanitary Laundry Co., Charlotte,
NC. Although undated, based on his age, it must have been completed
tragically, after surviving the war, 26-year-old Andrew suffered
severe third-degree burns in a house fire and succumbed on 5 January