Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The death of Jerry Siegel's father: part 1 of 3

Brad Meltzer's novel The Book of Lies came out this week. Other Brad Meltzer news also came out—he has started a foundation the first task of which is to raise money to restore Jerry Siegel's former house in Cleveland, which is in a state of alarming disrepair.

I've already covered the 1932 death of Jerry Siegel's father Michael here and here, but since it's a key plot point in The Book of Lies, it is opportune timing to share some of the documentation.

[NOTE: Jerry's father is called Michael Siegel on his death certificate (spelled "Michel"), on his police report, in his obit, and in his wife Sarah's obit. Gerard Jones, author of Men of Tomorrow, wrote me "His name was Michel in the old country, officially Michael in the U.S., and his nickname Mitchell."]

In sum, sources including Men of Tomorrow reported that Michael was shot to death during a robbery of his clothing store. He did die during a robbery, but due to a heart attack.

Here is the coroner's report:

property of the State of Ohio

Here are my transcription notes:

phrase "supposed to have come to his death from violence" in boilerplate
store not named
hazel eyes
gray hair
no beard, mustache
light complexion
65 inches high
150 (maybe 160) pounds

"no wounds" (on body)
"ears & nails cyanotic" (a bluish discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes; a sign that oxygen in the blood is dangerously diminished, as in carbon monoxide poisoning)
"came to his a room? or a store or place of business by the said Michael Siegel - where he collapsed and died ? as the result of natural causes following the theft of a suit of clothes by ? Negro; death due to 1 - acute dilatation of heart, 2 - chronic myocarditis"

Continued in part 2.


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