Ranger Exes Memorial - RHS Class of 1938 RJC

Pete Brashier FELTON PALMER "PETE" BRASHIER, JR., 74, was born on March 30, 1922, lifelong resident of Ranger, TX & died Nov. 24, 1996, in an automobile accident near San Angelo, TX. He was a graduate of Ranger High School and Baylor University in 1943. Mr. Brashier served as a gunnery instructor in the U.S. Navy Air Corp. Mr. Brashier joined his father & grandfather in Ranger Furniture Exchange in 1946 and worked there until his retirement in 1989. He married Betty Hudgins in Wharton, TX, in March of 1946. They celebrated their 50th Anniversary in 1996. Men honored for icy rescue of Ranger residents By Roy A. Jones II (Senior Staff Writer) (04/05/1997) RANGER - Four men who waded into icy water to rescue four elderly Ranger residents from drowning in their overturned car have been honored by the Texas Department of Public Safety. James Vaughn, David Gentry and Martin DeLaGarza, all of Bronte, and Bruce Vaughn of Midland received the DPS Director's Award. The rarely-given award is the civilian equivalent of the Director's Citation which is given to active duty troopers who perform acts above and beyond the regular call of duty, a DPS official said. It is the highest such award given to civilians. The men were nominated for the award by DPS Trooper Roy Blair of Robert Lee because of their heroic actions last Nov. 24. About 10:30 a.m. that day, the five Ranger residents were northbound on U.S. 277 in Coke County under extremely hazardous weather conditions, Blair said. The temperature was below freezing, snow was blowing, and the road was snow packed with patches of ice. Five miles south of Bronte, the car driven by Felton Palmer Brashier, 74, slid out of control, crossed the southbound lane, struck a culvert and dropped about 10 feet into a creek. The vehicle landed upside down in about two feet of icy water. Brashier apparently died instantly from crash injuries. His four passengers survived the crash but were hanging upside down from their safety belts and in danger of drowning as the frigid water ran into the car. DeLaGarza was on his way to San Angelo and the Vaughns and Gentry were returning from feeding livestock when they came up on the accident scene. Without regard for their own safety, they immediately entered the water and cut or loosened the seat belts of the victims, and carried them to safety. Brashier's wife, Betty, was found unconscious and not breathing. Bruce Vaughn performed CPR on her until she began breathing. She was admitted to Shannon Hospital in San Angelo in serious condition, but survived. Elva Larson, 94, also was seriously injured, but also survived. Less seriously injured were Dorothy Beames, 72, and Robert Nuwnham, 71. Major Lee Smith of Midland, regional DPS commander, presented the awards to the four men earlier this week. Had they not come along when they did and braved the frigid water the accident would likely have claimed five lives instead of one, he said. The four men said they didn't consider themselves heroes, but that they just "happened to be there and did what we could."