Anger, Depression, Violence, and Lost Children

Anger, Despair, Violence, and Misplaced Youngsters


Let me inform you a narrative about two little women, 9-year-old Georgetta Von Buhren and her huge sister, 12-year-old Marie. Their story lately got here to mild when a modern-day treasure hunter named Chelsey Brown purchased a mysterious {photograph} in a classic New York retailer and determined to seek out out the story behind the image. It turned out to be a true-crime story.

Georgetta and Marie lived with their dad, 35-year-old George, in a modest condo in Brooklyn. It was a comparatively unusual residing state of affairs—a dad elevating his two daughters—however one the ladies had resigned themselves to since their dad and mom had been estranged.

Their father was so indignant on a regular basis. He hated their mom. He’d referred to as her all kinds of nasty names. They did not perceive them however had heard individuals murmur phrases like “floozy” and “hussy” below their breath. Georgetta and Marie simply pretended they could not hear.

For a time, that they had a stepmother of kinds, 30-year-old Susan Royce. They began relationship proper after their dad and mom separated, however that relationship additionally ended. Father instructed them it was their mom’s fault Miss Royce left; one thing about New York divorce legal guidelines and him being unfairly handled. Possibly that was true, however the women thought their dad’s mood additionally had one thing to do with it.

Plus, they by no means had the cash for something as a result of their dad was at all times searching for a brand new job. Why, they questioned, did not he simply hold the outdated ones?

Their dad was loopy about Susan, and when it ended, he fell aside. Issues had been getting worse. I think about Georgetta and Marie hugging their Raggedy Ann dolls further tight and hoping issues would get higher. Thank God that they had one another.

And that’s how they died—collectively. George Von Buhren poisoned his two daughters, tried to poison his ex-girlfriend, Susan Royce, and ended his life the identical means. Aside from some interval particulars, this story may have been written yesterday. It was Might 8, 1929.

Time After Time

They did not use the time period “murder-suicide” again then. We do not know how widespread it was traditionally. We aren’t even certain how widespread it’s at present; there isn’t any nationwide database that particularly tracks murder-suicides. Since 2013, the Violence Coverage Heart has tried to fill within the gaps.

Their analysis has discovered that there are roughly 11 murder-suicides within the U.S. each week, claiming greater than 1,300 lives yearly. Of those, 65% contain an intimate accomplice, and 95% of those victims are girls.

We do not know what number of of those victims had been kids. However we will make an informed guess. Within the first half of 2019, as an illustration, 51 out of 340 murder-homicide victims had been below age 18. That parses out to slightly greater than 14%. Utilizing this as a baseline would imply that 18,135 kids and youths have died by murder-suicide since Marie and Georgetta’s 1929 deaths.

These Who Do not Be taught From Historical past…

In 1929, media protection of George Von Buhren’s violence centered on the suicide notice Von Buhren left behind. It pointed the finger on the New York divorce court docket; “I could state,” learn the message left on the kitchen counter, “that if the divorce legal guidelines of this state had been completely different, this will likely not have occurred. Why a person should stay married to a confessed untrue spouse with no recourse to a court docket of legislation is past me.”

Von Buhren alleged that his life (in addition to the lives of these he took) would have had a cheerful ending if he had been allowed to divorce his errant spouse and marry Miss Royce. Nonetheless, whereas nonetheless blaming exterior forces for his actions, even he admits that his habits earlier than his relationship breakup had been problematic.

“The aggravation made me nervous, depressing, and quick-tempered, and, being so, I used to be often out of labor. And I’d say issues to Susan that will damage her. Lastly, she left us, however God is aware of I like her greater than life itself. I’ve tried to get her to return again to us however haven’t succeeded. So have determined to finish it for all 4 of us.”

Ms. Royce, who managed to outlive her homicide try, described Von Burhen’s habits in starker phrases; “I used to be terribly afraid of George. He threatened again and again to take my life,” Susan instructed an area newspaper after the tragedy. “He begged me, many times, to return again to him and stated as he had so typically earlier than, ‘I will kill you when you do not.'”

Lest you suppose Von Buhren all of the sudden reached the top of his rope and “snapped,” let me set the file straight. Weeks earlier than he dedicated murder-suicide, he purchased a cemetery plot for your complete household.

The Backside Line

Lots of the particulars of this tragic story are misplaced to historical past. However others are surprisingly acquainted—an indignant, depressed guardian who’s bitter about his life circumstances, down on his luck financially, and unwilling to simply accept the lack of an intimate relationship. An individual whose former accomplice was scared of him and who repeatedly threatened to kill her and his kids.

In 1929, Georgetta and Marie died. Up to now this yr, it has been Clark, Olivia, Adam, Kalyeana, Xavier, DJ, Andres, Hunter, and plenty of others.


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