05 December 2009

Obituary—Thos. Deroy Ish Passes Suddenly

The following is one of the obituaries appearing in what we call the “Black Camel of Death” issue of the Fremont Times Indicator, 16 February 1922.

Popular Under-Sheriff Dies While on Duty In Court Room.

Thomas Deroy Ish, under-sheriff, stricken while on duty in the court room at White Cloud, died at his home in Fremont at 5:30 the same day.

Two years ago the popular official had a bad heart attack and although the picture of ruddy health, he knew the danger that hung over him daily like a sward of Damocles. Because of this he had been careful of over-exertion and undue excitement.

Feeling unfit to attend the present term of court, his spirit urged him to his duty and he went. During the afternoon the jurymen wanted water and Mr. Ish climbed the stairs with a heavy pail of the fluid. The heart could not stand the strain and began its erratic throbbing.

Friends took Mr. Ish to the train, after telephoning a local physician to meet him. The under-sheriff got out of the coach and walked to the waiting machine in which he was taken home where medical aid was unsuccessfully given.

Thomas Deroy Ish was born on the old homestead in Dayton township, Jan. 4, 1869. Growing to manhood as a farmer boy, Deroy bought 80 acres in Muskegon county where he lived for a brief time. Renting his farm he came to Fremont and engaged in the agricultural machinery business. Later Ish & Westgate were liverymen, Mr. Ish finally buying out his partner and continuing the business alone for a period.

For two terms, “Roy” Ish, as he was popularly known, was under-sheriff. He was a member of the local Odd Fellow lodge, a sociable, kindly, red-blooded fellow who made friends and kept them.

He was married April 15, 1893 the bride being Miss Lena Place, of Greenwood, Oceana county. The wedding was celebrated in Fremont. Of this union one child was born, Benjamin Ish, now 10 years of age. The son, the wife and two brothers, Theodore C., of the old homestead in Dayton township, and Albert M. of Pontiac are left to mourn his going.

The funeral was held Monday from the house at 1:30 p.m. and from the Methodist Episcopal church at 2, Rev Mr. Atkinson in charge. Brial was in Clark cemetery, adjoining the old home of the deceased in Dayton township. Brother Odd Fellows assisted at the services.

Fremont has many good fellows, but probably none of these have more real friends than had Thomas Deroy Ish. He had the quality of winning friendship and being loyal. In summing up, no greater thing can be said of a man than this.

Whew. That was a long one. Many lf the obits from this time period were quite long, especially if a well know local or public figure.

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