The firing of four pistol shots in rapid succession on Main-st. in the business part of town, about 6:20 on Tuesday evening of this week, was the first intimation Coldwater people had that a terrible tragedy had just been enacted in our city. Within a few minutes, almost the entire town had heard the sad news that Harvey E. Myers had been fatally shot, and that Ralph Adkins had done the shooting.
Mr. Myers had gone into the Leader Grocery and purchased some bananas, and had just left the store and started eastward toward his home. Mr. Adkins, having come through the store, followed not far behind. As Adkins approached Myers, and when within 6 or 8 feet of him, he opened fire with a 32-20 revolver, which, it was afterwards learned, had been borrowed.
Four shots were fired, three taking effect and one missing the body of Myers so closely that the bullet passed through the side of his coat. The supposition is that this was the first shot fired, and that it was this bullet that struck the door of the O. K. barber shop and glanced, striking a dog near by in the shoulder.
One of the shots struck Mr. Myers in the small of the back and passed through the body, ranging upward. Another shot struck the left side of the neck, just under the jaw, and passed through the neck, severing the jugular vein. The other shot which took effect struck the left arm, passing through the arm and into the body.
The wounded man managed to make his way eastward for about 40 feet to the building occupied by Elza Holmes and Holland & Pennington, where he turned in, falling as he entered the door and expiring a few minutes later. It was stated by doctors that either of the shots which took effect would have been sufficient to cause death.
The body of the dead man, after being viewed by a coroner's jury a couple of hours later, was taken to the Roberts undertaking parlor. On Wednesday forenoon the coroner's jury, which was composed of C. H. Chadwick, Chas. E. Allderdice, Roy McLaughlin, P. A. Johnston, Paul Gossett and R. C. Coles, after a careful examination of the facts, returned a verdict to the effect that the deceased came to his death as a result of "gunshots fired from a pistol in the hands of Ralph E. Adkins." Judge George S. Silsby acting as coroner, impaneled the jury and conducted the inquest.
Shortly before noon on Wednesday Mr. Adkins appeared before Judge Silsby, who fixed the time of the preliminary hearing at 10 o'clock a.m. on next Wednesday, June 4, and ordered the release of Adkins on a $10,000 bond, which was promptly furnished. E. A. Dickson signed the bond with Mr. Adkins.
Mr. Adkins has lived in Comanche-co. for about ten years. At present he conducts a dray line in this city.
It is stated that the trouble grew out of the alleged familiarity between Mr. Myers and Mr. Adkins' wife. The whole affair is a very regrettable one. It was the first shooting affair in our city in 33 years, the only others being the Sombart-Murphy and Miles-Pritchard killings in 1891, in which Murphy and Pritchard lost their lives.
The funeral of Mr. Myers was held on Thursday at 4 p.m. in the M. E. church, Rev. Loren W. Kemp of Pratt being in charge. Following the services in the church, burial was made in Crown Hill cemetery.
At the time of this death, Mr. Myers was nearly 46 years of age. He had been a resident of Comanche-co. nearly all his life, first making his home with the family near Protection, and later coming to Coldwater, where, for several years he had been engaged in the real estate loan and insurance business, and had built up a growing and prosperous business. He had a large acquaintanceship all over the county and was prominent in business circles in our city.
On October 27, 1901, in this city, Mr. Myers was united in marriage with Miss Ethel VonSchriltz, who, with four children survives him. The children are: Claude, aged 20; Harmon, aged 17; Kathryn, aged 16, and Junior, aged seven. Two sisters, Mrs. A. H. Murray and Mrs. J. A. Murray, both of Protection, and three brothers, Will B., of the Pacific coast, Erkie, who lives in Iowa, and Theron A., now of Colorado, also survives. One brother, Chas. M., died several years ago. The sympathy of the entire community goes out to the sorrow stricken relatives .
Thanks to Shirley Brier for finding, transcribing and contributing the above news article to this web site!
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