The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

December 30, 2007

Local farmer killed in tractor accident

George W. Ewing was a prominent figure in the Ashtabula County agricultural industry

LENOX TOWNSHIP — A tragic accident claimed the life of a prominent farmer within the Ashtabula County agricultural industry Saturday afternoon.

George W. Ewing, 88, was killed after he slipped off of his tractor while climbing onto it at his farm on East Union Street. Ashtabula County Coroner's Office Chief Investigator Rich Mongell said, Ewing had just finished emptying a manure trailer when he got off the tractor.

“It appears he was climbing onto the tractor, he slipped and the tractor ran over him,” he said.

Ewing had cleaned out his barn earlier Saturday morning and had been making trips into the field to dump manure, said Richard Lyness, a close family friend. When he slipped on the tractor, Ewing apparently grabbed the lever that engages the tractor, causing it to move forward. The tractor went over his legs and the trailer went over the rest of his body, Lyness said.

The tractor continued moving into the woods until it hit a tree and stalled out, he said. There were no witnesses to the accident, but Ewing's son, Ted, found him.

“Ted came to our house and said ‘call 911, dad is in the field and I think he’s dead. I think the tractor ran him over,’” Lyness said.

Mongell said Ewing left with his last load between 10:30 and 11 a.m. and was found at about 12:20 p.m. Ewing was pronounced dead at the scene at 12:30 p.m.

Ewing suffered head and extremity trauma. An autopsy is being performed by the Cuyahoga County Coroner’s Office. Mongell said he is hoping to have preliminary results back this afternoon.

Ewing has been sort of a fixture in Lenox Township as well as the agricultural community. He has been a resident of East Union Road since he moved to Ashtabula County in 1923, Lyness said.

He served as a Lenox Township trustee and also as a school trustee when the community had its own elementary school. In 1985, Ewing was named Lenox Township Citizen of the Year.

Ewing raised beef cattle and various crops on his farm.

“He was a very dedicated, hard working farmer that took a lot of pride in what he did,” said Jim Comp, neighbor and farmer. “He's been a good neighbor.”

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