From the Princeton, Indiana newspaper dated Wednesday February 20, 1952.

Continue Search for Body of River Victim

Search parties continued to drag the Patoka river downstream from the old traction line bridge at Patoka today in search of the body of Mrs. Hester HUNT, a Patoka resident, who is believed to have jumped into the icy water of the river late Tuesday morning.

Dragging operations continued until 5:30 o'clock Tuesday evening and were halted due to darkness. Operations were continued again this morning with several boats at the scene.

Investigations of the possible drowning have disclosed no actual witness to the jump from the bridge. However personal effects of the woman were found on the bridge after the incident.

Sheriff Maurice Wood stated this morning that a note written by Ms. HUNT was found and was placed into possession of the son, Donald, to whom it was addressed. Sheriff Wood stated that the contents of the note were on personal matters to the son in regard to a savings account and property transfer. The work "river" appeared on a line by itself in the letter, he stated.

Rivermen stated that the vicinity where Mrs. HUNT was believed to have jumped measures from 20 to 25 feet deep due to the flood conditions.

The scene has been visited by crowds of curious onlookers.

Reports today indicated that Mrs. HUNT was generally despondent over lingering bad health and some mention was made of her son's entering service soon. These things are thought to have brought on a despondency that led to her action.

Earlier reports stated that possibly she had been despondent because of being released from her job with a local firm. However, it was learned that she had other employment available at the time. Her release was brought about due to her health not permitting her to continue the type of work engaged in by the firm.


Obituary in the February 22, 1952 Princeton Paper

Find Body of Mr. HUNT; Services Set for Saturday

The body of Mrs. Hester Turpin HUNT, 47, was recovered from the Patoka river late Thursday afternoon approximately one mile downstream from the old traction line bridge from which she was reported to have jumped late Tuesday morning.

Dragging operation had continued since Tuesday afternoon. Late Thursday afternoon two youths, thought the saw a body floating in the current and told Donald Lee Stone, Patoka, who started a search in his boat and recovered the body. It was believed that earlier dragging operations had broken the body loose from its wedge below the surface.

Surviving the deceased are two sons, Charles HUNT of Oaklawn, Illinois, and Donald at home; four sisters, Mrs. Eva Mae Ruckman, Princeton, Mrs. Arvel Smith, Patoka, Mrs Kate Vernon, Tujungu, Calif., and Mrs. Marshall Hugo, Los Angeles, Calif., and one brother, Robert HUNT, Clayton, New Mexico.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday morning at 10 o'clock at the Colvin and Son chapel with Rev. Howard Jaquess officiating. Burial will be in the Patoka Cemetery.

Mrs. HUNT was born in Patoka, on May 10, 1904 and had resided in that community her entire lifetime. She was an employee of the Hansen manufacturing company.

Friends may call at the Colvin and Son mortuary after 4 o'clock this afternoon.

Note: Hester had worked at Hansen Manufacturing Corporation. She had taken her coat off, folded it and placed it beside her shoes and jumped in the river.


Birth: Book H-10 Page 22

Death: County Book H-46 Page 256 filed 2-29-1952

47 years, 9 months, 9 days

Above contributed by Janet (Elliott) Douglas, 1 Jun 2011