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Salem Pioneer Cemetery ~ William J. Dyer ~ part of the Marion County Pioneer Cemeteries of Oregon
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William J. Dyer
BORN: 14 Aug 1856 DIED: 1 Jan 1894 BURIED: 3 Jan 1894
BIRTH PLACE:  Kemptville, Ontario, Canada
DEATH PLACE: Jefferson, Marion Co., Oregon
IOOF - William J. Dyer, age 37, b. Canada, died near Jefferson, accidentally shot himself, son-in-law of S. A. Clarke; MARRAIGE - "Wm. J. Dyer of Walla Walla Co., W. T., over 21, & Sarah J. Clarke, over 18, m 29 May 1883 at house of S. A. Clarke; P. S. Knight, M. G. Wit: Wm. J. Clarke & Mary E. Woodworth Aff. S. W. Church #2858 pg 510".
Account of the Unfortunate Death of W. J. Dyer. JEFFERSON, Jan. 2 [Special] 
The accident to W. D. Dyer occurred between 4 and 5 o’clock p.m., on Jan. 1, at the farm of N. H. Looney. Mr. Dyer was out hunting with his two nephews, sons of N. H. Looney. They were on their way home when they separated, Mr. Dyer telling the boys he would go to the barn and help with the chores. Soon after the boys heard the report of the gun. They called to him and asked what he had killed. Mr. Dyer made no reply, and boys went on home. As Mr. Dyer did not come, they, feeling uneasy, started to search for him. His wife was with the rest, she being the first to find him. It was supposed he was in the act of climbing over the fence when the gun was discharged, taking effect in the back of his head. He was lying on the fence with his face down, the gun lying a few feet from him. He was but a short distance from the house when found. Dr. W. C. Hawk was summoned with some others, and they pronounced it an accident. 
WCJ 4 Jan 1894 6:2 

MR. DYER KILLED. Accidentally shot while engaged in a New Year Hunt. The sad circumstances happened on the Looney Farm near Jefferson. Word was received in this city last evening that W. J. Dyer, son-in-law of S. A. Clarke, was found dead late yesterday afternoon on the Looney farm near Jefferson. From meager reports it was ascertained that Mr. Dyer had gone out for a hunt during the day and not returning at about the appointed time a search was instituted for him and his body with the head nearly shot off was found lying near one of the fences on the place. It is supposed that Mr. Dyer’s gun was accidentally discharged as he was climbing the fence. W.J. Clarke, his brother-in-law residing at Gervais, was notified at about 6:30 p.m. of the sad accident and was summoned to go to the scene at once. Coroner Scott of Gervais was also called to hold an inquest. Mr. Clarke passed through Salem on the south bound overland train last night. Mr. Dyer and Miss Sarah Clarke of Salem were married several years ago. Up to a few months past their home has been in the state of Washington where Mr. Dyer was largely interested in some silver mines. They have been visiting at the home of Mr. and Mrs. N. H. Looney near Jefferson for some weeks -- Mrs. Looney being a sister of Mrs. Dyer. Their friends in Salem are legion and to them the news of Mr. Dyer’s fatal accident will cause deep and profound sorrow.
Oregon Statesman 2 Jan 1894 4:4 

Further Particulars Concerning the Accidental Shooting. 
The funeral of W. J. Dyer took place in this city yesterday afternoon, interment being beside that of his first wife, Marion Clarke Dyer, in Rural cemetery. Mr. Dyer came to his death by being accidentally shot on New Year’s day while returning from a hunt. He and his wife have been visiting at the home of Mr. and Mrs. N. H. Looney near Jefferson. On the afternoon of the day of the accident he went duck hunting accompanied by Mr. Looney’s two sons, William and Marion. It was 3 o’clock when he left the house. While passing along in search of game Mr. Dyer attempted to cross over some water but missed his footing and was precipitated into the stream. His lower limbs received a thorough wetting and he then started on his return to the home, together with the boys. When the three arrived within a short distance of the house they separated Mr. Dyer saying that he would proceed to the barn and assist Mr. Looney in the work. His nephews started on towards the house. They had not gone many steps when the report of a gun was heard and they called to their uncle to ascertain what he had shot at. Receiving no answer the boys went to the house. After waiting a short time and Mr. Dyer not appearing, at either the house or the barn, Mrs. Dyer surmised that something was wrong and started for the spot where the boys saw the smoke arising after the gun was fired. Arriving there she was horror stricken to find the lifeless body of her husband stretched across the "rider" of the fence and also the top rail. She called for help and Mr. Looney and others went to her assistance. They found that Mr. Dyer had been shot in the back of the head -- the charge entering above the occipital protuberance and ranging directly forward lodged just over the right eye. The gun was lying near the fence with one of the hammers sticking in the earth. The assumption is that Mr. Dyer attempted to climb the fence with the hammers of the gun raised and they catching on the rail caused the weapon to be fired with the fearful result. The body was left in its position until the acting coroner arrived when an inquest was read the jury finding that it was an accidental death. Mr. Dyer was a member of Portland Lodge No. 55, A. F. and A. M. also of Walla Walla Chapter R.A.M. and a Knight Templar. He was aged 37 years. 
Oregon Statesman 4 Jan 1894 1:3
W. J. Dyer 
August 14, 1856 
Kemptville, Ontario, Canada 
January 1, 1894
IOOF Register of Burials 
S&H pg 13 
Marion Co. Oregon Marriage Records, 1879-84, Vol IV, pg 41 
WCJ 4 Jan 1894 6:2 
OS 2 Jan 1894 4:4 
OS 4 Jan 1894 1:3

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