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William Walter "Walt" May
Birth: May 12, 1904
Los Angeles County
California, USA
Death: Jun. 23, 1931
San Jose
Santa Clara County
California, USA

Fresno Bee, CA, Monday, June 22, 1931, p5

L. A. RACE DRIVERS INJURED AT SAN JOSE

SAN JOSE, June 22 - Two Los Angeles race drivers were in a hospital today under treatment for injuries received during trial heats at the afternoon automobile races here yesterday. Walter May, the most seriously hurt, suffered a possible concussion of the brain, a broken shoulder and several fractured ribs when his car overturned from a collapsed front wheel.

Robert Scovelli was badly bruised when his machine skidded and rolled over at a turn.

The sixty-lap feature event was won by Steve Hinkley of Pasadena, after a long duel with Chet Gardner, Long Beach, who was second. Frank Whitney and Lloyd Axel, both of Los Angeles, finished third and fourth. The winning time was 29.40.4.

Cliff Wilson, Bakersfied, captured the twenty-lap consolation race in 12:24.4.

***

Bakersfield Californian, Tuesday, June 23, 1931, p1, c4

SAN JOSE, June 23. (U.P.)---Walter May, 26, Los Angeles auto racer, died today from head injuries sustained in an accident on a local race track last Sunday.

***

Fresno Bee, CA, Tuesday, June 23, 1931, p11

WALTER MAY, AUTO RACE DRIVER, DIES

SAN JOSE, June 23, 1931. Walter May, 26, Los Angeles auto racer died early today from head injuries sustained in an accident on a local race track last Sunday. At first belived to be recovering, May's condition became worse last night and this morning he died at San Jose Hospital.

***

Reno Evening Gazette, NV, Tuesday, June 23, 1931, p8, c7

RACER EXPIRES FROM INJURIES

SAN JOSE, Cal., June 23 --- (AP) --- Walter May, Los Angeles automobile racer, died here today of brain concussion. He was hurst (sic/hurt) last Sunday when his car turned over during speed tests at the San Jose track.

***

San Diego Union, CA, Wednesday, June 24, 1931, p20, c6

INJURIES FATAL TO RACE DRIVER
Walt May Dies From Hurts Incurred in Third Serious Crash in Which He Figured

LOS ANGELES, June 23 (A.P.)---The crash of Walt May's racing car at San Jose, Sunday, which resulted in his death today, was the third serious accident in which he figured in two years.

In a practice spin on the Ascot speedway track here last year he lost control of his automobile and suffered a serious back injury when the machine overturned. Later, during a tight race on the same oval, a flat tire threw his car into the fence and he was hurt critically again. Only last Wednesday night here his motor burst into flames in a 40-lap race, but he managed to extinguish the fire and finish second.

May was a southern Californian by birth, and started racing five years ago at Banning, Calif. He was a popular figure here because of his daring and sportsmanship. He is survived by his mother. May was not married. His body will be brought here tonight.

May was trying out an automobile with which he was not familiar preceding the race. He was third in the Pacific coast championship race in 1930 and finished among the first 10 in Indianapolis in 1929.

***

Los Angeles Times, CA, Wednesday, June 24, 1931, pg A-11, col. 3-4

WALT MAY DIES AFTER ACCIDENT AT SAN JOSE

SAN JOSE (Cal.) June 23 (AP) -- Walter May, 26, Los Angeles automobile racer, died here today of brain concussion. He was hurt Sunday when his car turned over during speed tests at the San Jose race track.

The crash of Walt May's racing car at San Jose Sunday, which resulted in his death today, was the third serious accident in which he figured in two years.

In a practice spin on the Ascot Speedway track here last year he lost control of his automobile and suffered a serious back injury when the machine overturned. Later, during a night race on the same oval, a flat tire threw his car into the fence and he was critically hurt again. Only last Wednesday night here his motor burst into flames in a forty-lap race, but he managed to extinguish the fire and finish second.

May was a Southern Californian by birth, and started racing five years ago at Banning, Cal. He was a popular figure here because of his daring and sportsmanship, and his death is mourned by those drivers with whom he associated. He is survived by his mother. May was not married.

***

LEGION ASCOT SPEEDWAY, 1920s-1930s, by John R. Luco, pg 123

A race was scheduled on June 21, 1931, at the speedy five-eighth's mile track at San Jose. All of Ascot's finest-Triplett, Quinn, Spangler, Stapp, Stubblefield, Brunmier, Cummings and Walt May were entered. May, without a car to drive and leading the point standings, asked if he could drive Vic Felt's "Triflex Special" which was granted. Coming out of the fourth turn on his first lap, May hit a dirt embankment on the inside of the track, rolled it twice and went down the straightaway end over end. His feet got hooked in the steering wheel and that was it. May was a close friend of Quinn and Triplett. He was to be missed by the entire West Coast racing fraternity.

***

Los Angeles Times, CA, Thursday, June 25, 1931, p20, c3

MAY. William Walter May, beloved son of Anna C. May and brother of Anthony C., Joseph R., Jerome A., Aaron L., Aileen L., and Vera M. May.

Rosary will be said tonight at 8 p.m. in the chapel of Ivy H. Overholtzer, 1719 South Flower Street. Requiem high mass at St. Joseph's Church, Twelfth and Los Angeles streets. Friday, June 26, at 9 a.m.
 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  August Carl May (1871 - 1927)
  Anna Catherine Niemeyer May (1872 - 1948)
 
 Siblings:
  Anthony Carl May (1901 - 1956)*
  Joseph ROY May (1902 - 1967)*
  William Walter May (1904 - 1931)
  Jerome Atalus May (1906 - 1946)*
  Eleanor AILEEN May Hodson (1909 - 1987)*
  Vera Marie May Kravetz (1911 - 1982)*
  Aaron Linus May (1913 - 1989)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Calvary Cemetery
Los Angeles
Los Angeles County
California, USA
Plot: Section G, Lot 435, Grave 12
 
Created by: Jane Marie Morrison
Record added: Aug 14, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 15360160
William Walter Walt May
Added by: Jane Marie Morrison
 
William Walter Walt May
Added by: Jane Marie Morrison
 
William Walter Walt May
Added by: Jane Marie Morrison
 
 
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- Summer
 Added: Aug. 10, 2012

- Jane Marie Morrison
 Added: Feb. 8, 2012
 
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