Leon, Decatur County, Iowa
January 1, 1903
TOM KOGER COMMITS SUICIDE
The citizens of our community were startled and shocked Tuesday evening
by the sad intelligence, which spread rapidly through the city, to the
effect that Tom KOGER had committed suicide at his home in the south
part of town, known as the GIBSON property. Shortly before 6 o'clock
the family consisting of Mr. KOGER, wife and five children, were
chatting pleasantly together in the east room of the house, the eldest
son being at work at Swift & Company's Packing House. Mrs. KOGER
remarked that she must go up town and get some meat for supper and at
once departed on her errand. In a few minutes after she had left, Mr.
KOGER procured a .32 caliber revolver, went into a bedroom, lay down on a
bed and shot himself through the head, the bullet penetrating the head
about an inch in front and above the right ear. Death was
instantaneous. The children heard the explosion and saw the flash and
ran terrorized from the house to give the alarm. In a few minutes, the
oldest boy arrived from his work and finding the house in darkness
suspected something wrong. He lit a lamp and began a search which
revealed his father lying on the bed with the revolver clutched in his
hand. Soon Harry BULLOCK and other employees from the packing house
arrived. Dr. LAYTON was summoned who made an examination of the body.
He said it was evidently a case of suicide and thought an inquest
Mr. KOGER was 38 years of age and was a quiet, temperate and industrious
citizen. He is survived by his wife and six children. No work or
writing was left to indicate the cause of his untimely taking off.
Various rumors as to the cause are afloat, including domestic trouble,
all apparently without foundation. Mrs. KOGER's theory is that the
deceased had become mentally unbalanced. He had been employed at Swift
& Co's. until two weeks ago and quit without apparent cause. He refused
to come up town to transact necessary business and these and other
peculiar actions are cited to support Mrs. KOGER's theory.
OBITUARY - THOMAS L. KOGER
Thomas L. KOGER was born March 9th, 1864, in Harrison County, Mo., moved
from there with his parents in 1865 on a farm 4 miles north of Decatur
City where he lived until he was married, on the 19th day of June, 1887,
to Anna B. CHAMBERLIN. They lived in Decatur a few years and from there
moved to Ringgold County where they lived 6 years, then back to Decatur
for two years and from there to Leon where they lived until his death.
He died December 30, 1902, and leaves a wife and 6 children, brothers and
sisters to mourn the loss of a dear husband, father and brother.
The funeral services were conducted by Rev. JONES, Pastor of the
Christian Church, and the remains laid to rest in Decatur Cemetery,
Transciption by Sharon R. Becker, December of 2008
To submit your Ringgold County obituaries, contact Sharon R. Becker at
Please include the word "Ringgold" in the subject line. Thank you.
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