Type of Officer: Special Officer
Jurisdiction: Santa Fe Railroad
County: Franklin
Death Date: 1/16/1926
Added to Memorial: 2007
Circumstances of Death: Gunshot
Santa Fe Special Officer E. Lee Bowler and Special Officer H. N. Latimer had been inspecting a standing freight train at Ottawa Junction on January 16, 1926 looking for possible trespassers. As an eastbound passenger train approached, Bowler stepped to a position away from the approaching passenger train to stand on a supposedly empty eastbound track. Neither special officer was aware of another eastbound freight engine approaching, running in the same direction and parallel with the passenger train. Special Officer Bowler stepped immediately in front of the eastbound freight engine, the noise of its approach being deadened by that of the passenger train. Bowler was killed instantly. He was 51 years old at the time of his death. It was noted in the Ottawa Herald newspaper that Special Officer Bowler had been dangerously wounded by a desperado ex-convict in April 1921 while in the performance of his railroad police duties.