Annual Heritage Days Parade Ends in Tragedy

Bellevue, Iowa, holds an Independence Day parade on the Fourth of July just like most cities across the country. Only this year, their annual celebration went terribly wrong. The New York Times reports the parade was moving along as normal until a “black blur” went whizzing by.

Victim Janet Steines’ family has been riding the parade via horse and buggy for years. According to The New York Times, Janet and her family were waiting by the parade’s starting point when “one of the horses came loose from its bridle, perhaps as the two horses were rubbing their heads together, officials said. Then the horses — and the entire carriage — took off, and a chaotic scene unfolded block by block, over some seven blocks along Riverview Drive, a street of quaint shops parallel to the river.”

The horse and buggy trampled children and ejected its passengers. Tragically, Janet Steines was killed. The Times reports that “Two dozen others, at least 15 of them under the age of 12, were injured, trampled mostly, as they sat on the curb, pressed hip to hip, hanging their feet and grabbing for tossed candies.”

The town says this terrible accident will not deter them from having their annual parade.

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