William Jackson Litz, age 29, was killed as a fast-moving freight train struck his patrol car in the early morning hours of May 23, 1959. Litz and his passenger, Reserve Deputy Leland Graves, were traveling south on Hellman in the town of Cucamonga when their car was struck by a westbound train. Graves, who survived with major injuries, told investigators he did not hear a train whistle before the crash. Litz was pronounced dead on arrival at San Antonio Community Hospital in Upland.
Deputy Litz had been with the sheriff’s office since July 21, 1958. A native of Kentucky, he served with the U.S. Air Force from 1948 to 1952. Litz was survived by his wife Merline and two sons, his mother, brother, and sister.