A most shocking accident occured in this city on Monday last just before noon, which resulted in the death of an exemplary man and a good citizen, Mr. Noe LaBerge, brother to our city mayor, James LaBerge, was about his work as a carpenter at the railroad repair shops, and was at the particular time engaged on a box car, which stood on a repair track. The usual signal flags had been properly placed at each end of the car being repaired, so it was supposed to be safely protected from any danger. However, the brakeman, or some of the crew of the Rose City train which had arrived a short time previously, "kicked" in two cars onlto the repair track, and against the car being repaired by Mr. LaBerge, and by it, his life was crushed out. [This is the story told by eye-witnesses, though the cornorer's jury found that he "came to his death by a moving car."]
The victim was breathing when extricated from his awful predicament under the car, and he was taken to his home as quickly as sleighs could carry him. A physician, already summoned, examined Mr. LaBerge, and found that his injuries would surely prove fatal, and in about a half hour afterward, or within an hour after the accident happened, he passed away.
The funeral services were held from St. Joseph's church on the morning of Thursday, Rev. Fr. Kinney, assisted by Fr. LaMontagne of AuSable and R. Alban of Onway conducting the services. The solumn high mass was celebrated, and Fr. Kinney followed with a most eloquent funeral address. The attendance was very large and the procession to the burial place in the Catholic cementary was one of the largest ever seen at a funeral in this city. The Knights of St. John had the burial in charge, and from their numbers the pallbearers were chosen; and the K.O.T.M.M., of which society the deceased was also a member, formed a part of the cortege. And a great sadness seemed a pall upon every heart.
Noe' LaBerge was born in the county of Beauharnois, P.Q. June 24, 1849. When he was about 20 years of age he came to Bay City with his brother, James, where they both remained for a time and then came to East Tawas. After a year or two, Noe' LaBerge returned to Canada and shortly afterward, about the year 1875, he married Miss Victoria Crevier. In 1887, he, with his wife and the family they then had, came again to East Tawas, and there they made their home afterward.
Twelve children have been born to the family, three having died in infancy. There are six daughters and three sons, and all, excepting Mrs. Delisca Dagnall of Montreal, were present at the funeral; Miss Beatrice come from Montreal, and Miss Denesge from Onaway. Beside these of the immediate family, there are two brothers, James of East Tawas and Louis of Hale and one sister, who resides in Washigton, are left to mourn the loss.
Mr. LaBerge was a carpenter by trade and he followed this work at the railroad repair shops for nearly 20 years. He was at the head of the car-repair gang.
The deceased was an unassuming man, preferring the warmth of the home, the affections of his family and devotion of his church and the Catholic faith, to all else the world could offer. He was highly respected for his many virtues, his faithfulness to every trust and by all his relatives and friends he was most dearly beloved. He was a good man in life and with his last breath he lisped a prayer and his spirit was wafted away.
[Submitted by George Philip LaBerge, his grandson]