James William WILSON (1888-1943) : “Died in a gutter in Colorado”
EDITED 1 February 2022: New information has come to light. Another James W. Wilson died on 17 March 1945 in Colorado, with an obituary in The Daily Reporter (Greenfield, Indiana), here. This obituary is that of Uncle Jim, as is the gravestone at the Find A Grave memorial, here. The one who was hit by a car in 1943 was somebody else yet to be researched.
The family said that he “died in a gutter in Colorado.” But sometimes families exaggerate. They said he had a drinking problem — that it contributed to his death. Perhaps it did.
Uncle Jim was my mother’s uncle, an older brother of her daddy. He was born in 1888 in Vernon County, Missouri, while the family was living “out West” for a time before moving back to Indiana.
Uncle Jim’s wife was Aunt June. They married in 1923 in Marion County, Indiana.
Uncle Jim’s obituary tells the story of his sad death.
Denverite Killed by Car
Denver, Aug. 21. — James W. Wilson of Lakewood died last night a few minutes after being struck by a car just west of the city limits. Highway Patrolman Duane Handrick said the driver of the car told him that Wilson was crossing the street outside the pedestrians’ lane, and that he did not see him.
Uncle Jim died in Colorado. He was only 54. Perhaps he did die in a gutter. Maybe he was under the influence, which contributed to his crossing the road at night when a car was coming.
Aunt June continued to live in Colorado as a widow, at least for a time, working as a telephone operator. They had no children.
To Uncle Jim. Your little brother, my granddaddy Roy, clearly loved you. He named one of his boys after you. I am sad that your life was cut short by this tragedy. It hurts me to think that you suffered. Thank you for bringing the joy that I envision two childhood brothers would have. You probably got into a lot of mischief, and I’m sure you and my granddaddy had a lot of fun.
Thoughtfully, Elizabeth, daughter of Margaret, granddaughter of Roy, and your grand-niece.