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Pa. woman killed by falling tree

May 03, 1997

By LAURA ERNDE

Staff Writer

SHADY GROVE, Pa. - A woman mowing her lawn was killed Saturday when a gust of wind blew a tree on top of her, Pennsylvania State Police said.

Ruth Arlene Moyer, 53, of 12497 Gearhart Road, was on a riding lawn mower about 2:30 p.m. when the freak accident occurred, police said.

Moyer died of multiple trauma, police said. Franklin County Coroner Kenneth L. Peiffer Jr. pronounced her dead at the scene at 3:40 p.m.

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Winds gusted throughout the day Saturday in the Tri-State area. A gust of 46 mph was recorded in Hagerstown, said Greg Keefer, a Washington County weather observer.

A man who answered the phone at the Moyer home Saturday night declined to comment.

Moyer lived on a farm and was no stranger to work, said neighbors Glenn and Isabelle Stahl.

The Stahls got to know Henry and Ruth Moyer about seven years ago, when they sold them land for their dairy farm.

"She was a hard-working woman," Glenn Stahl said.

"When we shook hands with her, her hands were rough," Isabelle Stahl said.

The farm is at the end of a long lane off Gearhart Road and neighbors didn't hear about the death until Saturday night.

"She would go up the road and she'd always wave. I just waved at her yesterday," Isabelle Stahl said.

The Moyers were victims of a strange accident in 1983, neighbors said.

Their 5-year-old daughter was killed when she was climbing a gate that fell over on her.

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