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Published On: Fri, Jul 31st, 2015

Arlene Barnum recounts car accident instigated by Confederate Flag protesters, led to death of Anthony Hervey

Arlene Barnum spoke out about the car accident which killed Anthony Hervey. The crash followed a Confederate Rally, involved opponents of the flag forcing the Ford Explorer off of the highway.

Speaking to TheBlaze, with her fractured left foot propped up and neck still sore, bruised and cut up, Barnum recalled the details of the July 19 accident.

Barnum heard Hervey say “hell no” — the last words she’d hear him say — and felt the vehicle begin to speed up. On the driver’s side, she could see a silver or grey car with “no more than three” black passengers approaching their vehicle.

“[Hervey] took off like he was trying to outrun them, he was taking flight. They caught up with us, and that’s when they were on the passenger side, and they moved closer to my door, and that’s when Mr. Hervey swerved into the ditch, and he tried to get back on the road,” she recounted.

“The vehicle was out of control, and the vehicle just started tumbling into the ditch on the right hand side.”

“I couldn’t tell you how many times, but it was a lot and with each roll that it hit in the ditch, I thought it was going to be my very last. I felt like I was going to die, and as each hit got harder, I didn’t know if I was going to die with that hit or that hit or that hit,” Barnum said to the Blaze.

“And then the vehicle got real dark inside. I couldn’t tell if it was smoke or dust, and I asked Mr. Hervey to reach the key in the ignition where I had a pocket knife to cut himself lose because the seatbelt was very tight.”

Hervey, 49, never responded.

She was helped out of the vehicle.

“I felt a hand grabbing me, just pulling me out,” Barnum recalled. “I was trying to be independent and walk on my own, and I couldn’t, and they said ‘that’s alright, we got you.’ I’m not used to having people helping me like that.”

Hervey was a proud defender of the Confederate flag in his hometown of Oxford, Mississippi and a speaker at many rallies, Hervey’s goal of making sure that black Confederates were not wiped out of history.

Barnum said Hervey opening discussed the repercussions of his activism (i.e. bricks thrown into this house, his home being broken into and one time he was physically assaulted.)

“No one has ever done it to me, I couldn’t feel what he was saying,” she said of the treatment he had received. “I had not lived the life that he lived, based on where he lived.”

“We want them caught,” Barnum said, adding that she spoke with Hervey’s wife on the phone when the recently widowed woman called to give her the details of the funeral to be held Sunday, August 2.

“Mississippi had taken so much from her and taken her husband from her, it was the last straw, and she’s moving away,” Barnum said. “She’s going to leave the state of Mississippi and is going to have [Hervey] cremated so that no one would mess with his remains.”

Check out the full interview and photos at The Blaze.

Arlene Barnum

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at [email protected] ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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  1. Interloper says:

    The police probe of the wreck found that Anthony Hervey lost control of the vehicle resulting in his death. There is no evidence of a second car or anyone arguing with Hervey. Barnum’s story appears to be fabricated.

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