Sheller-Globe in Keokuk manufactures weatherstripping and up to 1990 made crash pads for vehicle dashboards. Many employees made their way through the entrance, and some stayed 40 or more years while others stayed far less. Two employees there in 1975 made the headlines in a fatal culmination that resulted in the death of an innocent bystander.
On July 20,1975 James Edmondson, 48, was walking north on Main St. after work when Agnes Hudson, 36, came up behind him in a car and tried to run him down. Edmondson saw her coming and picked up a large rock on the side of the road and threw it at the car Hudson was driving. Hudson lost control of the vehicle and crossed the middle of the road causing a head on collision with Fred Meister, 19, who was driving a motorcycle, killing him instantly.
It was hard to find any details of this incident, if I was at the library in Keokuk I could look through their microfilm archives of the paper, but I am no longer able to do so. I managed to find information surrounding this event by searching online for several weeks using a newspaper search engine. I followed the case because of the circumstances that surrounded the incident, and living there at the time I was very interested in the case.
Apparently these two individuals both worked at Sheller-Globe and had an on again/off again romantic relationship. According to the accounts in the news they were into smoking and selling pot, and a lot of partying with co workers and others. The relationship was pretty volatile at times with loud fights and other scuffles that were common. On the night of the incident, they had gotten into a fight and when their shift was done, Edmondson left to walk home by himself rather than wait on Hudson. Hudson stated that she left work in her car looking for Edmondson, and for no reason he threw a rock, which hit her windshield causing her to lose control. Edmondson claimed he acted in self defense, because Hudson was aiming the car at him traveling at a high rate of speed. Meister was in the wrong place at the wrong time and ended up getting killed.
Edmondson was charged with 2nd degree murder and assault, with Hudson getting charges of 2nd degree murder a few days later. I don’t know whatever happened after that, the trail goes cold after the first few newspaper reports that I could find.
Years later I asked around some of the people who worked at Sheller Globe if they recalled the incident. I think I started asking out of curiosity in 1978 when I happened to remember the news articles on it. A few old timers had a vague memory but that was as far as I ever got with that. No one could remember having known them, which was not surprising since it was a factory and a lot of people passed through those doors.
But the memory of the incident and the trial that followed stayed with me, and so many years later I was able to find some information on it.