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The Western Star, August 10, 1923.

Mrs. Lillian Rees

The sad news reached our city the later part of last week of the death near Boulder, Colo., on Thursday August 2, of Mrs. Lillian Rees, sister of Mrs. W. D. Kirby of this city. Dr. and Mrs. Kirby and their son, Melvin, are visiting in Boulder, having gone there a few weeks ago for their summer vacation. Mrs. Rees had visited in this city. The news of her death, with its sad and somewhat strange surroundings, bring sorrow to all who had ever known her. The bereaved relatives have the sincere sympathy of all.

The Boulder News Hearld of August 2 gives the following account of Mrs. Rees' death:

Mrs. Lillian Rees, aged 35, a resident of Boulder for the past year, committed suicide at 2:30 o'clock this afternoon by shooting herself with a .32 caliber revolver as she stood with her nephew, Melvin Kirby of Coldwater, Kans., at the foot of Lovers' Leap in Boulder canyon. Financial troubles are believed to have prompted the act, although authorities have not yet received sufficient information to say definitely.

Mrs. Rees, since coming to Boulder has been proprietor of a rooming house at 812 Fourteenth-st. Kirby, in a statement to sheriff's officers following the tragedy, declared she had poor business during the summer and was in debt.

Mrs. Rees and Kirby, according to the latter's statement, left Boulder about noon for a hike up Boulder canyon. Arriving at Lover's Leap they stopped, Mrs. Rees stepping down to the creek bank and Kirby staying at the top of the ridge. Without warning he declared, she pulled a gun from her clothing and fired once across the creek. He asked her why she was shooting and without further reply she fired across again. He again spoke to her and before he could prevent it she turned the gun on herself, pulling the trigger. She fell, dead at the stream bank. A passing motorists whose name was not learned, witnessed the tragedy and immediately drove to Boulder, reporting it to the sheriff's office. Deputy Sheriff Eagleton answered the call, arriving on the scene a few minutes later. Sheriff Blum and deputy sheriff Reed who had been out of town, returned a few minutes after the office had been notified and also drove to the scene of the tragedy. The four removed the body to a car and brought it to the undertaking parlors of Coroner Leslie B. Kelso.

They then questioned Kirby and were scheduled to question Kirby's father, who, together with his mother, are visiting at the Rees home. They have been here about a week and a half.

Information gathered by the officers was to the effect that Mrs. Rees was more or less heavily indebted to the elder Kirby. Whether this fact contributed directly to the cause of the shooting is not known. Mr. Rees is survived by three children, aged 7, 9 and 14 years. Her husband died two years ago, according to Kirby. She came to Boulder from Sylvia, Kans. The weapon which she turned on her self was evidently new, showing no signs of previous usage. Deputy District Attorney Tinglof announced this afternoon that an inquest will be held, probably tomorrow.


Thanks to Shirley Brier for finding, transcribing and contributing the above news article to this web site!

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