Man dies in farming accident near New Athens

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A man has died following a Monday afternoon farming accident in rural St. Clair County.

The St. Clair Sheriff’s Department was dispatched to what was called in as a possible explosion in the 2900 block of Klein School Road off Route 156 between Hecker and New Athens. It was later determined there was no explosion.

Upon arrival, emergency responders found 53-year-old Burt C. “Charlie” Kreher II of Waterloo with a head injury. He was airlifted to a St. Louis hospital, where he was later pronounced deceased by the St. Louis Medical Examiner’s Office.

Police said Kreher was working on farm equipment – a disc plow attached to a anhydrous pull-behind tank – in the field when a high pressure hose failed on the plow and knocked him back.

“The St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department is treating this as an accidental death and there is no indication of any foul play or intentional harm to the victim,” Capt. Bruce Fleshren stated in a news release.

Services for Kreher will be 4-8 p.m. May 4, at Quernheim Funeral Home, Waterloo, and 9-10 a.m. May 5, at St. Augustine of Canterbury Catholic Church, Hecker.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. May 5, at the church, Father Von Deeke, Monsignor Dennis Schaefer and Father Eugene Neff officiating.

Interment will follow at St. Augustine Cemetery, Hecker.

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