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Posted at 9:15 AM ET, 01/20/2011

Man killed in Md. accident identified

By Allison Klein
Allison Klein

The man who was killed when a Maryland State Police trooper hit him with an SUV Wednesday nigth has been identified as Buhrman K. Baird, 88, of the 24000 block of Old Hollywood Road.

Baird was pushing a lawn mower in the road when trooper Wesley Goldston struck him, police said.

Goldston was driving south on Mervell Dean Road at about 7 p.m. Wednesday when he saw a man walking in dark clothing in front of him. He took "evasive action" but was unable to avoid hitting Baird, according to a press statement from the Maryland State Police.

Goldston was driving an unmarked white 2010 Jeep Laredo registered to the state police's Automotive Safety Enforcement Division, police said.

Crash investigators said speed does not appear to be a factor in the accident.

A witness told police that before the accident, he had seen a man described as Baird walking in the roadway and had swerved and blew his horn. He said he later saw the same man walking in the roadway and saw another car swerve suddenly, according to police.

By Allison Klein  | January 20, 2011; 9:15 AM ET
Categories:  Allison Klein, St. Mary's, Traffic Accidents, Updates  
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Next: Arrest in Md. after chase, collisions

Comments

Fantastic journalism as always.

I would sure like to know what city in Maryland this happened.

Posted by: stockaeyahoocom | January 20, 2011 10:35 AM | Report abuse

It's unusual to hear of an 88-year-old man pushing a lawn mower, let alone in the dead of winter at night on the street. It's sounds like the elderly gentleman may have been suffering from dementia and escaped supervision. Maybe he wondered away from a nursing home. May he rest in peace.

Posted by: CAmira5 | January 20, 2011 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Since whe is night spelling nigth?

Posted by: blackforestcherry | January 20, 2011 10:42 AM | Report abuse

This happened in Hollywood, MD. The elderly man was a Veteran and a former United States Marine. Ever since I can remember he has walked on the shoulder of the streets here in Southern Maryland. I knew him as Sneedy but every person that ever passed through Hollywood Maryland knew the "lawn mower man" because he walked around pushing a lawn mower. He was always a bit mysterious because nobody knew why he pushed the lawn mower. Some people speculated that it was his walker, other people speculated that he mowed lawns every now and then for money. One thing is for sure, I've never seen him without him pushing his lawn mower. He was always seen at the Hollywood Burchmart (shell station) and was one of the kindest men you will ever meet. I also must say that I don't believe for one minute that there were other witnesses saying they had to swerve to avoid him. He has been walking the streets for 10+ years and never been hit but now they have witnesses saying they almost hit him last night? I was on my way home from work at 6:30 last night (He was hit at 7) and saw him him walking in the direction of where the accident happened and he was AS ALWAYS on the shoulder. I know that the police offer obviously didn't hit him on purpose, but I just feel like the police department is trying to avoid any rumors of negligent driving.

My girlfriend and I have given him many rides over the years and I know his presence in our community will be missed. We will always remember Sneedy the "lawn mower man"

Posted by: parsonspm | January 20, 2011 10:51 AM | Report abuse

This happened in Hollywood, MD. The elderly man was a Veteran and a former United States Marine. Ever since I can remember he has walked on the shoulder of the streets here in Southern Maryland. I knew him as Sneedy but every person that ever passed through Hollywood Maryland knew the "lawn mower man" because he walked around pushing a lawn mower. He was always a bit mysterious because nobody knew why he pushed the lawn mower. Some people speculated that it was his walker, other people speculated that he mowed lawns every now and then for money. One thing is for sure, I've never seen him without him pushing his lawn mower. He was always seen at the Hollywood Burchmart (shell station) and was one of the kindest men you will ever meet. I also must say that I don't believe for one minute that there were other witnesses saying they had to swerve to avoid him. He has been walking the streets for 10+ years and never been hit but now they have witnesses saying they almost hit him last night? I was on my way home from work at 6:30 last night (He was hit at 7) and saw him him walking in the direction of where the accident happened and he was AS ALWAYS on the shoulder. I know that the police offer obviously didn't hit him on purpose, but I just feel like the police department is trying to avoid any rumors of negligent driving.

My girlfriend and I have given him many rides over the years and I know his presence in our community will be missed. We will always remember Sneedy the "lawn mower man"

Posted by: parsonspm | January 20, 2011 10:52 AM | Report abuse

WTF, talk about Karma, the trooper was driving a SUV owned by the State "Police Automotive Safety Enforcement Division".

Posted by: Raidersfan2 | January 20, 2011 11:24 AM | Report abuse

There is no longer any quality control at the Washington Post...

Posted by: ceebee2 | January 20, 2011 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Fantastic journalism as always.

I would sure like to know what city in Maryland this happened.

Posted by: stockaeyahoocom
***
If you click on the link in the article ("hit him with an SUV") you will see the original piece which gives more details.

Posted by: Rachelva | January 20, 2011 11:56 AM | Report abuse

"I know that the police officer obviously didn't hit him on purpose, but I just feel like the police department is trying to avoid any rumors of negligent driving." Just like when MSP Ron Hill killed an 'intoxicated' woman in Mechanicsville as he was going 90+ mph w/o lights or siren chasing a phantom motorist. There is a long unobstructed view of Mervell Dean Road heading south to the site of the accident. Unless the victim suddenly darted into the roadway, the driver was driving too fast for the conditions by overdriving his headlights. The victim's body was covered on the road's shoulder

The MSP SUV in question has been seen running laser by Leonardtown Ford.

Posted by: dongrahamwp | January 20, 2011 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Go to http://www.mgfh.com/obituaries/index.cfm and see the condolences for Buhrman Kenneth "Yogi" Baird

Posted by: dongrahamwp | January 20, 2011 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Hollywood MD will not be the same without “Sneedy”. Sneedy is well known throughout the local Southern Maryland community; he was a proud war veteran - rarely seen not wearing his camo jacket. He got his nickname “Sneedy” when he was a paratrooper in the Military, around the same time he helped to build PAX River Naval Base in 1944.
Sneedy always amazed me, a man of his age and health walking miles and miles on a daily basis. It wasn’t uncommon for him to walk from the Hollywood McKay’s all the way to the California Lowes; that’s a 16 mile round trip! He was a very independent man, he didn’t take rides from anyone, only people he knew and trusted.
Sneedy had been through a lot in the last few years; he survived a terrible fire (suspected arson), suffered severe burns, and injuries that effected his speech. With all of his injuries he was advised to stay at the nursing home in Leonardtown while recovering, well Sneedy wanted things his way so he did what Sneedy did best, walked out! The town rallied around him and offered him places to stay, but Sneedy was proud and independent, he did accept an offer to live in a pump house! Soon after he was able to save some money and bought a $5000 camper - powered by a kerosene generator. Many thought the infamous lawn mower gave him something to lean on – it was actually used to carry kerosene back to his home. Although Sneedy’s body had aged and suffered injuries, his mind, memory, and sense of humor remained sharp. He loved to talk about his life, times in the military, friends/family, ups and downs; laughing and smiling the whole time.
After the fire his speech was sometimes hard to understand, many thought he had suffered a stroke, was mentally challenged, or even drunk; this was definitely not the case. The speech impairment didn’t faze Sneedy, people having to listen a little closer only meant Sneedy got to talk a little louder! Nothing was going to stop him from telling his stories, enjoying his life, or walking to the local convenience store to get in on the latest town gossip. It may have been hard to catch every word but he made sure to get his point across!
Sneedy gave my mother some papers a few years ago, saying that if he were to pass away he wanted them read at his services. I know she wasn’t the only one he gave them to.
Sneedy was an inspiration and an example; he let nothing slow him down and faced many challenges head on, all with the best of attitudes, courage, strength, and spirit. Some believe angels walk among us; I know I was brought up like that, "be kind, help those in need, be gracious, non-judgmental, and always thankful - you never know..." Although if Sneedy was an angel he didn’t walk among us, he walked circles around us!
He will be truly missed, and always remembered!

Posted by: andreabell | January 20, 2011 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Hollywood MD will not be the same without “Sneedy”. Sneedy is well known throughout the local Southern Maryland community; he was a proud war veteran - rarely seen not wearing his camo jacket. He got his nickname “Sneedy” when he was a paratrooper in the Military, around the same time he helped to build PAX River Naval Base in 1944.
Sneedy always amazed me, a man of his age and health walking miles and miles on a daily basis. It wasn’t uncommon for him to walk from the Hollywood McKay’s all the way to the California Lowes; that’s a 16 mile round trip! He was a very independent man, he didn’t take rides from anyone, only people he knew and trusted.
Sneedy had been through a lot in the last few years; he survived a terrible fire (suspected arson), suffered severe burns, and injuries that effected his speech. With all of his injuries he was advised to stay at the nursing home in Leonardtown while recovering, well Sneedy wanted things his way so he did what Sneedy did best, walked out! The town rallied around him and offered him places to stay, but Sneedy was proud and independent, he did accept an offer to live in a pump house! Soon after he was able to save some money and bought a $5000 camper - powered by a kerosene generator. Many thought the infamous lawn mower gave him something to lean on – it was actually used to carry kerosene back to his home. Although Sneedy’s body had aged and suffered injuries, his mind, memory, and sense of humor remained sharp. He loved to talk about his life, times in the military, friends/family, ups and downs; laughing and smiling the whole time.
After the fire his speech was sometimes hard to understand, many thought he had suffered a stroke, was mentally challenged, or even drunk; this was definitely not the case. The speech impairment didn’t faze Sneedy, people having to listen a little closer only meant Sneedy got to talk a little louder! Nothing was going to stop him from telling his stories, enjoying his life, or walking to the local convenience store to get in on the latest town gossip. It may have been hard to catch every word but he made sure to get his point across!
Sneedy gave my mother some papers a few years ago, saying that if he were to pass away he wanted them read at his services. I know she wasn’t the only one he gave them to.
Sneedy was an inspiration and an example; he let nothing slow him down and faced many challenges head on, all with the best of attitudes, courage, strength, and spirit. Some believe angels walk among us; I know I was brought up like that, "be kind, help those in need, be gracious, non-judgmental, and always thankful - you never know..." Although if Sneedy was an angel he didn’t walk among us, he walked circles around us!
He will be truly missed, and always remembered!

Posted by: andreabell | January 20, 2011 7:25 PM | Report abuse

michelle obama forgot to tell him to wear a reflective vest..

Posted by: wewintheylose1 | January 20, 2011 8:05 PM | Report abuse

andreabell- Just because you were familiar with this gentlemen doesn't mean the trooper knew of his habit of pushing a lawn mower and walking in the street. Troopers get moved around the state to serve. Sounds like the poor fellow lacked family to care for him. It's very unfortunate.

Posted by: alphadog2 | January 21, 2011 7:14 AM | Report abuse

Andreabell, It was wonderful to read about Sneedy. All of us hope that we will be remembered as you remember him..."an inspiration and an example; he let nothing slow him down and faced many challenges head on, all with the best of attitudes, courage, strength, and spirit." I happen to be a friend of Trooper Goldston's and I would use the same words to describe him. He is a kind, energetic and hardworking family man. He is a wonderful neighbor to my elderly mother. The local community relies on him for many things and he always rises to the challenge. I assure you he is suffering as a result of this unfortunate accident. I too believe "angels walk among us" and we should "be kind, help those in need, be gracious, non-judgmental, and always thankful." I hope you will keep my friend in your prayers. He is a good man - a kind and generous man. To those of you who are implying that there is some kind of cover up going on by the police department - shame on you! This was a tragic accident. I hope should you ever find yourself in a tragic situation that you are afforded the benefit of the doubt and unfair conclusions are not placed on you during your time of grief!

Posted by: ga-kentucky | January 21, 2011 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Thank U folks who posted and gave some insight to the Gentleman My family and I ( the Hess's) of Hollywood only knew as the "lawnmower man" . Mr. Baird will sorely be missed, and here in henderson,nv we send our prayers, 4 ALL involved. J.M.Hess Henderson,NV & Hollywood,MD

Posted by: kss044 | January 22, 2011 2:32 AM | Report abuse

Having been familiar with Yogi for nearly thirty years, I was compelled by my grief to visit the scene of the accident. I have just returned. In the few freezing minutes I stood reading notes, seeing a representative lawn mower, many plants and flowers and flags and looking at the detritus from the accident, at least four cars stopped to ask questions about possible services for this much loved man. Unfortunately, the services were private and we are without an outlet for our grief. Many have congregated in these last days at the BurchMart, trading stories.
Also while standing at the scene, two local men came out of their houses to talk with me. We agreed that it is indeed very unlikely that there were witnesses "swerving" to avoid Yogi. Even if he were attempting to cross the Old Hollywood Road, the long straight stretch along which his body and lawn mower were dragged, is well lit and the policeman was entering the road from a stop sign. Yogi's blood and the scrapes from dragging his lawn mower across the road remain clearly visible.
"Knowing" Yogi over so many years (coffee at Roy Rogers with him and his friends, then more recently, jokes and commentary at the BurchMart) I realize that I took him for granted. Now I know that he improved my life by demonstrating what men like him are made of. His absence reminds me that each of us have untold stories. Knowing that some customers complained about his presence is another reminder of how self-centered we all can be.
His truly tragic ending will haunt all of us, especially the policeman behind the wheel. I sincerely hope that someday he will be able to make peace with himself and perhaps this community. It is to that end I will keep him in my prayers.

Posted by: nancyyannayon | January 22, 2011 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Having been familiar with Yogi for nearly thirty years, I was compelled by my grief to visit the scene of the accident. I have just returned. In the few freezing minutes I stood reading notes, seeing a representative lawn mower, many plants and flowers and flags and looking at the detritus from the accident, at least four cars stopped to ask questions about possible services for this much loved man. Unfortunately, the services were private and we are without an outlet for our grief. Many have congregated in these last days at the BurchMart, trading stories.
Also while standing at the scene, two local men came out of their houses to talk with me. We agreed that it is indeed very unlikely that there were witnesses "swerving" to avoid Yogi. Even if he were attempting to cross the Old Hollywood Road, the long straight stretch along which his body and lawn mower were dragged, is well lit and the policeman was entering the road from a stop sign. Yogi's blood and the scrapes from dragging his lawn mower across the road remain clearly visible.
"Knowing" Yogi over so many years (coffee at Roy Rogers with him and his friends, then more recently, jokes and commentary at the BurchMart) I realize that I took him for granted. Now I know that he improved my life by demonstrating what men like him are made of. His absence reminds me that each of us have untold stories. Knowing that some customers complained about his presence is another reminder of how self-centered we all can be.
His truly tragic ending will haunt all of us, especially the policeman behind the wheel. I sincerely hope that someday he will be able to make peace with himself and perhaps this community. It is to that end I will keep him in my prayers.

Posted by: nancyyannayon | January 22, 2011 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Due to the outpouring of condolences, the funeral home will be having a memorial serivce. Mr. Baird's memorial service will be held at Mattingley-Gardiner Funeral Home at 7:00 pm on Friday, January 28 (per the funeral home's website http://www.mattingleygardiner.com/obituaries/index.cfm). The burial is still private but we will be allowed to pay our respects at the memorial serivce.

Posted by: breensharon | January 24, 2011 4:34 PM | Report abuse

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