Chicago, Illinois -- Marguerite Beel and her husband Jethro Richard Beel Jr. (pictured above with their son) went on the Eastland together for a day of relaxation and merriment. The happy couple were dancing on the lower level of the ship when it began to list.
Jethro saved his wife by pushing Marguerite out of a porthole window. However, he was not slim enough to fit through the window and perished. Despite not knowing how to swim, she waded her way through the Chicago River, the wreckage, and thousands of others fighting for their lives to the edge of the ship where someone pulled her to safety. A family member held Jethro Edward, Jethro and Marguerite’s nearly two-year-old son, as they watched the tragedy unfold.
Marguerite sustained injuries that prevented her from supporting herself and Jethro Edward. Over a year after the disaster, Marguerite married Henry Ludwig Sr. and had two sons with him. Marguerite and Henry raised Jethro Edward together.