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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Police were called to the banks of the Spokane River after a caller reported a man had jumped into the river. Police found only a coat and hat on the banks.

Inside the coat was what appeared to be a suicide letter, which read: “Life has lost all interest to me now. I am a very unhappy boy. In fact, I have never been happy. … Here I am in Spokane, unable to get work. I have never been anything but a ‘black sheep’ to you at home, anyway. I think I have suffered injustice for it. I will not bid you farewell, but just say goodbye until we meet again in the ‘great beyond.’ P.S.: I applied at the navy recruiting station at Butte, Mont., but was turned down on account of my teeth.”

The river was dragged, but no body could be found.

From the hospital beat: A banquet was held to raise funds for a new wing at Deaconess Hospital. The board was seeking $75,000.

One doctor explained the hospital’s financial dilemma as follows:

“The hospital deficiency is caused by two classes of people. One class is that small proportion of people who are absolutely unable to pay, and those we cheerfully expect to help. The other class is by far the larger, and consists of those who regard a hospital bill as an unjust debt and refuse to pay. If this class should pay, the hospital we could make self-supporting.” 

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