|Death: ||Sep. 7, 1913|
Hazel was the daughter of John and Caroline Crummel of 948 Bell Street in Akron, Ohio. She lived with her parents and four siblings: Floyd, Clarence, Elsie and Clara. John was a night watchman at B.F. Goodrich Rubber Company. Caroline was a nurse. Wanting to follow her mother, Hazel decided to study nursing at the New England Sanitarium in 1911. It was an Advantist hospital located in Melrose, Mass., not far from Boston. After Hazel's graduation, she was hired as a nurse there. Her peers took notice right away of her compassion.
On September 7, 1913, Hazel volunteered to escort a mental patient named Aida E. Feingold, 20, of Worcester, Mass. on a Sunday strole through Middlesex Falls Reservation, a state park near the hospital. The two young women walked arm in arm, talking and enjoying the sunshine. They sat to read a book together. It had been a very pleasent afternoon. Hazel and Aida left to walk back and was passing Quarter Mile Pond. Aida was known as a rational patient. But as they neared the pond, for no apparent reason, Aida jumped into the water. Feingold waded deeper into the lake as Hazel called to her to come back.
The Lowell Mass. newspaper, the Lowell Sun, told the story in 1913:
Miss. Crummel, stupefied for a moment, rushed after her patient, who scrambled, leaped, hopped farther and farther offshore, finally plunging headlong under the water. Miss. Crummel plunged after Miss. Feingold. There were no screams. The patient turned toward the pursuer for a moment, grinned, shrieked with laughter and continued her flight. Nearly in over her head, the nurse inched forward. She didin't know how to swim. Crummel caught up with Feingold about 200 feet offshore.The patient, a larger woman, turned and grabbed the nurse's neck. The two thrashed in the water, slipping under the surface and bobbing up again. The nurse gasped for air. Although forgetful of herself in an endeavor to save the life of the crazed woman, she was unable to swim, and with Miss. Feingold grappling with her, the two sank from sight," the Akron Beacon Journal reported. A boy who witnessed the struggle ran to get help. When authorities arrived, the lake was tranquil again. after more than an hour of searching, the two women's bodies were recovered. They were found locked in a final embrace 200 feet offshore. A funeral for Hazel was held at her Bell Street home in Akron and Rev. Francis M. Fairchild, an Adventist elder presided over the service. Hazel became the first Akron native to earn the prestigious Carnegie Medal. This honor was given to private citizens who showed heroism. In January 1915, the commission presented Hazel's father, John with a silver medallion and a check for $500.00. The Silver award is still in Hazel Crummel's family to this day.
The inscription on Hazel's gravestone is as follows:
"A nurse, she gave her life in a vain effort to save, from drowning, the life of a patient confided to her care. This stone is placed at her grave by her associates and her friends."
She was only 21 years old.
John P. Crummel (1855 - 1918)
Caroline S. Crummel (1858 - 1931)
Alberta L. Crummel Vorderman (1880 - 1912)*
Clarence L. Crummel (1881 - 1937)*
Clara Edna Crummel Borrowdale (1890 - 1962)*
Hazel Crummel (1892 - 1913)
Plot: Sec. 25
Created by: Mr. Ed
Record added: May 30, 2001
Find A Grave Memorial# 5493397