George E Heller
Born 1866 in Galena, Jo Daviess, Illinois
Died 04 Jul 1882 in Galena, Jo Daviess, Illinois

Galena Daily Gazette, Tuesday, July 5, 1882

An event which filled a mother's and father's heart with grief and put an effectual damper upon the enjoyment which had previously characterized the German Evangelical picnic yesterday afternoon, was the drowning of George Heller, aged 17 years, son of Henry Heller, employed at A. Duerr's & Co.'s mill, on Broadway. From those conversant with the particulars we learn that young Heller, in company with his cousin, Phillip, son of R. H. Heller of Dubuque, had left the German Evangelical picnic grounds, for the river, for the purpose of bathing. That the two boys were in the act of swimming across the river, when George, on reaching about the middle of the channel, was attacked with cramps. The young man cried out to his cousin for assistance, whereupon the latter quickly swam to where George was struggling in the water, and made a heroic effort to save his life, at the risk if his own. Twice he was pulled under the water by the drowning boy, the last time being barely able, exhausted as he was, to free himself from the grasp of his cousin, and make his way to shore. The alarm was given as soon as possible, and in a short time after the young Heller had gone down for the last time, the river bank was lined with people, among whom were the heartbroken parents and many sympathizing friends, who sought vainly to comfort the afflicted ones. Efforts were made to recover the body, and about an hour after it had been in the water, it was brought to the surface by Mr. John Ryan, one of the searching party. It was placed in a skiff and brought to the upper black bridge and conveyed to the family residence near Shot Tower Hill.

The funeral will take place from the house at 2 o'clock to-morrow afternoon.

Date: 1882-07-05; Paper: The Daily Inter Ocean
Galena, Ill, July 4--George Heller, Jr., age 17 years, son of George {sic Henry| Heller, a well-known miller, of this city, was drowned in Galena River this afternoon, near the woolen mill, while bathing.

Submitted by Christa Hughes.