21 April 2010

Obituary--George R. Demkey

This a from a rather long article about the death of a former resident and two others that he shot. I'll post in installments. It continues to amaze me the information that papers would print back then.

From the 15 July 1926, Fremont Times Indicator.

A court injunction restraining him from visiting his wife and 15 months old daughter pending divorce proceedings is believed to have caused George R. Dempkey, 28 years old to slay Eric Carlson, 46 years old, and Mrs. Carlson 42 years old, his father-in-law and mother-in-law, then turn the gun on himself, taking his own life and bring the total number of criminal deaths in Muskegon county to 10 in less than two months.
Thursday afternoon's tragedy took place shortly after 5 o'clock in the back rooms of the Carlson home, at 830 W Forest avenue, and was witnessed by Bernard Carlson, 15 year old son of the murdered couple who was standing about 10 feet from Demkey when the latter opened fire.
Boy Tells of Killing
Dempkey, who had made three unsuccessful attempts to see his little daughter since his return from Pennsylvania July 3, came into the yard yesterday and approched little Lucille Carlson, his year old sister-in-law, thinking it to be his child, Bertha Rose Demkey according to Bernard's story.
Learning of his mistake, Demkey proceeded to the back door and asked Mrs Carlson, who was working in a refrigerator rom off the kitchen, if he could see his child. The grandmother, in whose custody the baby was left, refused.
"I guess I have a right to see my own child and I'm going to see her any time I want to," Bernard said Demkey then stated.
This report brought Mr Carlson out of the kitchen where he had been doing some painting, and who told Demkey that if he wanted to see the baby whenever he wanted to he ought to put her some place where he could pay half of her board.
The argument then switched to the pending divorce proceedings, which were to start next week in circuit court, Demkey saying: "I don't want to take this court. We ought to be able to settle it peacefully."
"Well, it's your lawyer who is holding out," Mr Carlson said. "Why don't you see him and settle it that way."
Dempkey then protested that it was all the Carlson's who were back of all his domestic troubles, saying "You people started the trouble and now you're going to pay for it. "
With this Dempkey drew a gun from his pocket, pushed his hand through the screen door which was locked and advanced on the couple, who backed up.
"Don't shoot, George, don't---"

To be continued tomorrow. (Ain't I a tease?)

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