In the 1930 Census, Dr. John C. Furlong was listed as a "country doctor" who lived on Blivin Street. He was Canadian and had graduated from Rush Medical College in Chicago in 1891. He spent his first years of practice in several small towns in Illinois, before coming to Spring Grove in 1909 where he spent the next 25 years. He enlisted the the Medical Corps of the Army during WWI.
After the war he became a member of the American Legion in Richmond, which played a role in the story of his death. It was a foggy fall evening in 1934 – in the midst of the depression – when he disappeared. His wife, Emma, watched him drive off in his Oakland Coupe to his monthly American Legion meeting. When he didn't return home by 11:00 p.m., she got a little nervous and called their son in Chicago who assured her that he probably was just delivering a baby somewhere. But in the morning, when there was still no word from him, a search party was organized. They searched all day Friday into the night but there was no sign of him anywhere.
But then on Saturday, a driver who pulled over with car trouble on the then new Route 12 just south of the Solon Mills bridge, heard a moan coming from the bottom of the 10 foot steep embankment by the road. He looked over the edge and there he saw an overturned Oakland Coupe, with Dr. Furlong pinned underneath. He had been missing for 40 hours.
He was still conscious, but in shock and suffering from exposure with a severely bruised leg that had been pinned under a wheel of the car. He was brought to to a Janesville hospital where he seemed to be okay until an infection set in his leg and he soon died, as this was before antibiotics. He was 71.
The people of Spring Grove would miss the kindly cheerfulness which he brought to sick rooms at all hours of the day or night. And for many years after, Emma would continue to receive envelopes with money from families who still owed the old country doctor money from delivering their babies.