On approaching Allman Street the boys, Douglas Perryman and William Dowser, became distracted by the leaflet drop and didn't notice a car coming into the intersection. This was when Lindesay and Allman Streets were unsealed and before a stop sign had been erected at the intersection. Both boys suffered severe head injuries. Douglas died instantly and William a few hours later.
This week I interviewed ninety six year old Elsie Evans at her home in Lindesay Street. Elsie lives in the same house that she was living in on the day of the accident. She heard the accident and ran out to give help to the boys. Elsie was a trained nurse and sat in the back of the ambulance with the boys on its way to hospital at Camden. She told me "Hank (the ambulance driver) told me you could get in the back. These days look at all the equipment they've got but back then we had nothing". The boys' families were found and taken directly to Camden unaware of the condition of either boy.
The tragedy not only forced Council to erect a stop sign at the intersection but it also changed the attitudes of parents towards their children owning and riding bicycles. Sadly the 'Spring Shopping Fiesta', as the day was known, will always be remembered for one of the town's most devastating tragedies.
This is the exact site of the accident photographed in 2006 by Stan Brabender
Elsie at her home in Lindesay Street in 2018. She was first on the scene in 1961.
'Living on the St Elmo Estates: the story of one man's trust"
In Grist Mills
Vol. 30, No.1, March 2017
Campbelltown-Ingleburn News, September 26, 1961 p3
Elsie Evans Oral History Interview 17.1.2018