Norman M. Strauch was born on Nov. 12, 1885 near Dawson, Fayette County, PA, the son of John and Mary Hester (McKnight) Strauch. He was one of two brothers among many Minerd- Minard- Miner- Minor cousins to be killed in railroad and streetcar accidents.
By the age of 14, in 1900, Norman had left his parents' home and was employed as a servant and farm laborer in the household of Frank and Mary Stickle near Dawson.
In 1920, the federal census shows that Norman lived in Pittsburgh, boarding in the home of Edward and Gustine Matthey, and worked as a clerk in a retail grocery.
Norman married Laura Cease ( ? - ? ). They are not thought to have had children.
Circa 1926, Norman resided in Wheeling, Ohio County, WV. There, he received the horrific news that summer that his brother John had been crushed to death between two railroad cars in an accident near Brownsville, Fayette County.
By 1949, Norman and Laura were living at 132 Dolphin Street in the Hazelwood section of Pittsburgh, where he was employed as a conductor for the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad. He was a member of the Joppa Lodge of the Masons, Knights of Pythias lodge and Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen.
Tragedy struck in the wee hours of the morning on July 24, 1949, when Norman was struck by a moving freight train in the Demmler yards near McKeesport. Suffering from a crushed left leg and amputated right foot, he was rushed to McKeesport Hospital, where he "was pronounced dead upon arrival," said the Connellsville Daily Courier.
His funeral was held at the Fisher and Owen Funeral Home in Hazelwood, followed by burial in the Dickerson Run Union Cemetery. A death notice in the Pittsburgh Press invited all of his fellow lodge members to attend.