Agnes Vera Skewes

F, b. circa 1900, d. 1979
  • Agnes Vera Skewes was born circa 1900. She was the daughter of Martin Skewes and Emily Elizabeth Morris.
  • Agnes Vera Skewes married John (Norman) Butters, son of John Henry Butters and Ruth (Rebecca) Rose Walker, in 1921 in Brisbane, Queensland. They lived at Revesby, Crow's Nest.
  • Agnes Vera Skewes and John (Norman) Butters appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1930 living at Sunnyside, Pinelands. Norman was a farmer.
  • On 22 March 1937,her husband, John (Norman) Butters died in Toowoomba Hospital, Queensland.
  • Agnes Vera Skewes died in 1979 in Brisbane, Queensland.

Cyril Frederick M(asters) Skidmore

M, b. 1902, d. 1939

Frederick William Skidmore

M, b. circa 1885
  • Frederick William Skidmore was born circa 1885.
  • Frederick William Skidmore married Alice Louisa Masters in 1901 in Taree, New South Wales.

Child of Frederick William Skidmore and Alice Louisa Masters

Martha Ivy Skilton

F, b. 1875, d. 1948

Children of Martha Ivy Skilton and Charles Frederick Lammas

Andrew R L Skinner

M, b. circa 1875

Charles Albert Skinner

M, b. circa 1893, d. 1893

Charles Henry Skinner

M, b. circa 1860, d. 1935
  • Charles Henry Skinner was born circa 1860. He was the son of Henry Skinner and Elizabeth Hardy.
  • Charles Henry Skinner married Elizabeth Maud Gilmour in 1886 in Brisbane, Queensland.
  • Charles Henry Skinner died in 1935 in Brisbane, Queensland.

Children of Charles Henry Skinner and Elizabeth Maud Gilmour

Frederick Skinner

M, b. circa 1875

Children of Frederick Skinner and Maud Elizabeth Caroline Goldsmith

Horace James Skinner

M, b. 23 October 1908, d. 7 May 1982

John James Skinner

M, b. circa 1915, d. 1960

Lena Margaret Skinner

F, b. circa 1885, d. 1969
  • Lena Margaret Skinner was born circa 1885. She was the daughter of Henry George Skinner and Jane Eliza Gillespie.
  • Lena Margaret Skinner married Chalres William Munro, son of John Munro and Elizabeth Adams, in 1911 in Queensland.
  • Lena Margaret Skinner died in 1969 in Brisbane, Queensland.

Leslie Skinner

M, b. 1892, d. 14 June 1957

Sidney Skinner

M, b. 1906, d. 22 May 1989

Alice Elizabeth Maud Skuse

F, b. 6 January 1897, d. 1968
  • Alice Elizabeth Maud Skuse was born on 6 January 1897 in Queensland.
  • She was the daughter of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming.
  • At the age of 17 years, 10 months and 18 days, Alice Elizabeth Maud Skuse married Fredrich Kath, son of William Henry Kath and Maria Christina Pfeiffer, on 24 November 1914 in Congregational Church, Goombungee, Queensland. Both Elizabeth and Fred lived at Goombungee.
  • On 13 March 1945,their son, Nevell Stanley Kath died in Papua New Guinea at age 28. His parents were living at Mt Tyson at the time he died.
  • Alice Elizabeth Maud Skuse died in 1968 in Queensland.

Children of Alice Elizabeth Maud Skuse and Fredrich Kath

Annie Elizabeth Beatrice Skuse

F, b. 2 August 1892, d. 26 July 1962
  • Annie Elizabeth Beatrice Skuse was born on 2 August 1892 in Queensland.
  • She was the daughter of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming.
  • At the age of 17 years, 3 months and 13 days, Annie Elizabeth Beatrice Skuse married Harold Raymond Baxter, son of Thomas Baxter and Emily Handford, on 15 November 1909 in Queensland.
  • Annie Elizabeth Beatrice Skuse and Harold Raymond Baxter appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1925 living at Goombungee. Harold was a blacksmith.
  • Annie Elizabeth Beatrice Skuse died on 26 July 1962 in Beenleigh, Brisbane, Queensland, at age 69.

Arthur Hawthorne Skuse

M, b. 21 April 1887, d. 1959
  • Arthur Hawthorne Skuse was born on 21 April 1887 in Goombungee, Queensland.
  • He was the son of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming.
  • At the age of 32 years and 3 months, Arthur Hawthorne Skuse married Annie Sercombe in August 1919 in Brisbane, Queensland. At the time of their marriage Arthur as a Signaller in the 15th Light Horse.
  • Arthur Hawthorne Skuse enlisted in the Australian Army on 19 December 1941 in Brisbane His service number was Q123181 and he gave his next of kin as his wife Annie. He was living at Kelvin Grove at the time he enlisted. He was discharged on 9 Jun 1944 with the rank of Sergeant in the NCRO.
  • Arthur Hawthorne Skuse died in 1959 in Brisbane, Queensland.

Child of Arthur Hawthorne Skuse and Annie Sercombe

Bernice Isabel Skuse

F, b. 23 June 1918, d. 9 October 1938
  • Bernice Isabel Skuse was born on 23 June 1918 in Toowoomba.
  • She was the daughter of Edward Irons Skuse and Charlotte Tereza Lucht.
  • Bernice Isabel Skuse and Norman Kenneth McDowell were engaged.
  • Bernice Isabel Skusedied of a gunshot wound to her head on 9 October 1938 in Gomoran, Queensland, at age 20. Below are three oaths sword at the inquest:-
    EDWARD IRONS SKUSE on oath states:-
    I am a widower, and live with my family at Gomoran near Goombungee. Bernice Isabell Skuse was my daughter. She was 20 years and about 4 months at the time of her death. My wife died in April 1937. Since my wife's death, the girl looked after the home for me. I have 5 sons. I knew Norman Kenneth McDowell for about four years prior to his death. I know that at the time of his death he was employed by Mr McDonald, Goombungee-Haden Road. Prior to this he used to work for Raftery and Woods, who both live in the direction of my home.
    My daughter and McDowell were keeping company for some time, probably getting on for twelve months. McDowell came to my home to see my daughter. As a rule he came on Sunday night and Wednesday night, not always Wednesday but one day in the week. My daughter attended dances and other amusements with McDowell, not alone with him, but in company with other friends. My daughter and McDowell became engaged somewhere about 3 months prior to her death. I did not know of their having had any quarrels prior to becoming engaged. I heard on the Sunday morning, the date of my daughter's death that she had broken off the engagement. My son Stanley told me that. He said also that 'Bernice wouldn't see Monday morning'. He said they were at the Haden dance on the night before, and that McDowell had made a threat, and had afterwards apologised to my son.
    On the night of my daughter's death, she and other members of the family and a youth named Griffin were in the kitchen. After tea we remained in the kitchen for quite a while. I went to bed about 7.30 or 7.45 pm. My son and daughter and Griffin remained in the kitchen after I had left. I do not remember my sons leaving the kitchen and going to bed. After I had been in bed for some time, I was aroused by a noise. I had been asleep. When I heard the noise, I got out of bed and went towards the kitchen. There is a 10 or 12 ft verandah extending along the kitchen from the rear door of the house. At my bedroom door I was met by Griffin. I do not remember whether I spoke to him. I ran into the kitchen and found the place in darkness. I went back to my own room and lighted a lamp in my own room, and returned to the kitchen. I took the light from my own bedroom. On entering the kitchen, I saw my daughter on the floor, face downwards, six or seven foot from the kitchen door. I grabbed hold of her arm, and saw that it was too late - she was gone. I went to Mr Berge at the Sunnyside Hotel. Gomoran, and told him what had happened, he telephoned Sergeant Martin at Goombungee. I saw Sergeant Martin later, and later still I saw Const Reilly, Det Elford and Det Nesbitt. I did not see McDowell about my home that night. On the following morning, in company with Const Rielly, I saw the body of McDowell in the paddock at the rear of my home. I saw a single-barrelled shotgun lying on the ground close to McDowell's body. I saw that portion of McDowell's head was blown away.
    I have known the youth Griffin only as a friend of my sons, only a couple of months. He recently arrived at my house in the company with one of my sons who had been away working, and at the time of the death of my daughter and McDowell, Griffin was staying at my place. Griffin and my daughter were not close friends. There was nothing between them more than the fact that he was staying at the place as a visitor. There was nothing that could cause McDowell to be jealous of their association. The only conclusion to which I can come is that McDowell did away with the girl through pure jealousy and without a doubt, following the shooting of the girl he went to the paddock and shot himself. I would not know McDowell's handwriting. I have never seen it. I am quite sure that there is no other person associated with my daughter's death other than McDowell.

    STANLEY LAWRENCE SKUSE on oath states:
    I am a single man, 23 years of age, and am at present residing with my father at Gomoran near Goombungee. Bernice Isobell Skuse is my sister. I knew Norman Kenneth McDowell. I had known him for several years.
    During that time he had worked for a man named Raftery at Gomoran, also for Woods at Gomoran, and for some time immediately prior to his death he was working for McDonald, on Goombungee-Haden road. I knew that he was keeping company with my sister for some time, for about 18 months, to my knowledge. They were going together, and they broke it off, and for about 18 months before my sister's death they were keeping company. I have been away in the country working, for about 3 years, coming home occasionally. During the occasions I was at home, I saw McDowell visiting my home. He came there to see my sister. I was home about 3 weeks before my sister's death. I think it was just when I came home that I heard McDowell and my sister were engaged. John Griffin came home with me on that occasion. He was at my home on the night of 9th October 1938, and is still there.
    From the time I returned home up till the date of my sister's death, I attended two dances with her. McDowell was present at both those dances. On the night prior to her death, that was a Saturday night, I attended a dance at the home of people named Smith at Boodua. I had attended a dance at Haden on the previous night that is the Friday night. My sister and McDowell were at that dance also. During the progress of the dance at Haden, my sister asked me to speak to McDowell, as he had made threats to her. She said he had told her she would not see Monday morning. I did speak to McDowell. I said I wanted an explanation as to the threats he made against Bernice, and he was very sorry for what he had said, and he apologised to me, and in my presence he told my sister he was very sorry for what he had said, and to take no notice.
    McDowell was a saxophone player, and played for the different dances around about the district. He was playing the saxophone at that particular dance on the Friday night. After the dance my sister and McDowell and I left in company, and McDowell parted with us at the entrance to McDonald's place, where he was employed. My sister and I came home together. That was the last time I saw McDowell alive. On the Sunday night I was in company with my father and brother and my sister and Griffin in the kitchen of our home, after tea. My father went to bed about 7.30 pm. I was not last in the kitchen. I retired at about 8 pm. One of my brothers, Griffin, and my sister Bernice were then in the kitchen. When I left they were all sitting and talking. When I left the kitchen and went into the house to go to bed, I did not see anybody about.
    After going to bed, I heard a terrible noise, which I thought sounded like a sheet of iron loose on the house. I gotout of bed, and met my father in the hallway, and went into the kitchen with him. I saw Griffin at that time. He was in the hallway too. The kitchen was in darkness then. We had a light in the kitchen, which was taken out of one of the bedrooms. In the kitchen I saw my sister lying on the floor, face downward, in a pool of blood. I lifted her head, and was satisfied that she was dead. My father then went to the Sunnyside Hotel and communicated with Sergt Martin of the Goombungee Police. I later saw Sergt Martin and Const Reilly of Goombungee, and later still saw Det Elford and Det Nesbitt. I remained there throughout the night. A search was made throughout the night for McDowell, for the reason that the Police officers returned to the house at intervals through the night. On the following morning at daybreak, I saw the body of McDowell in the paddock at the rear of my home. I was in company with Const Reilly. I saw a single barrelled shotgun grasped in McDowell's left hand. I saw that portion of his head was blown away.
    I would not know McDowell's handwriting. WITNESS LOOKS AT PHOTOGRAPHS - 'A' FOR IDENTIFICATION. My sister is in three of the photographs now shown to me, one of the others is of her alone, and the other is of my mother. Since I returned home in company with Griffin, I have been in close association with Griffin. There was nothing more between him and my sister than the fact he was staying at our house. McDowell would not have any cause for jealousy through the associations of my sister and Griffin. I know that McDowell used to ride his pony to my place when he came to see my sister. I saw his pony tied to a tree in a paddock opposite our home, the morning following the shooting. From my knowledge, and from what I have learned following the shooting, I am of the opinion that the whole thing was brought about by jealousy on the part of McDowell. There was no cause for such jealousy on his part. I am satisfied that McDowell shot my sister, and afterwards went into the paddock behind our place and shot himself.

    JOHN BERNARD GRIFFIN on oath states:-
    I am a single man, at present residing at the Skuses' home at Gomoran, and have been residing there since 20 Sept1938. Prior to that date I was employed near Kumbia, in company with the previous witness, Stanley Skuse. I was employed by my brother at that place; Stanley Skuse was employed at the same place. I had never been to Skuse's home prior to 20 September 1938. I knew Bernice Isobell Skuse - I did not know her prior to 20 September 1938.
    I knew Norman Kenneth McDowell. I had met him for the first time at the rodeo ball at Goombungee on 24September, I think it was. I met him at different times after that, at about three dances. Bernice Skuse was in attendance at those dances also. Stanley Skuse was at each of those dances. McDowell was playing the saxophone at those dances. After the dances, I went home with Stanley and Bernice Skuse in Sharp's truck, and from two of the dances McDowell rode his horse home to where he was working. One night McDowell came home with Stanley Skuse and Bernice Skuse and myself, from Haden, as far as the place where he was working. McDowell visited the girl on several occasions since I have been staying at Skuse's. He was quite friendly. There was no reason for him to be jealous of myself and the girl.
    I remember 9 October 1938. On that night after tea, the girl and her father and brothers and myself were in the kitchen. They retired to bed at intervals, leaving myself and the girl in the kitchen. It’s about 8.45 pm I am sitting down in the kitchen reading a newspaper, the girl was standing alongside me, the distance between us would be approx 4 inches. She was also reading portion of the newspaper. The paper was folded into two different portions, I was reading one and she was reading the other. While we were so engaged, I heard a scream from the girl. She turned and looked facing the kitchen door, which opens on to a verandah, and then screamed. I sat dumbfounded for a moment. I heard a shot and smelled gunpowder. Bernice fell on the floor beside me. There had been a light burning in the kitchen; it was blown out by the shot. Following that, I ran outside, but could not see anybody there.
    I went into the house and told the girl's father what had happened. I returned to the kitchen with the father and Stanley Skuse. A lamp was lighted in the kitchen, and I saw Bernice was lying on the floor of the kitchen, she was lying in a pool of blood. Stanley picked her up and had a look at her, I also looked at her and saw that her face was half blown away. She was dead then. I was present later when an examination was made of the kitchen wall.
    I saw a number of pellet shots in the wall in a direct line with the kitchen door and the spot where Bernice was standing at the time she was shot. At the time the shooting took place, I was sitting down, and Bernice was standing a short distance away from me. I am satisfied that the shot was fired from the kitchen verandah, immediately outside the kitchen door. The person who fired the shot must have moved away quickly; otherwise I would have seen the person when I went out. I later saw the Goombungee Police, also Det Elford and Det Nesbitt.
    I remained about the house till daylight. I never saw the body of McDowell. I think the shooting was the result of jealousy on the part of McDowell. If he was jealous of me, he had no reason to be jealous of my association with the girl. I am satisfied that it was McDowell who shot Bernice Skuse, and from what I have learned, I am satisfied that he afterwards went into the paddock at the rear of the place and shot himself.
    The following is a copy of the suicide note left by McDowell.
    To all my friends who thought I was happy. Dear friends,
    No doubt you will think what I have done is an awful (sic) thing. But there isn't anyone in this world who realizes what Bernice meant to me. If we weren't engaged and this happened it would be different but no-one understands just what an Orphan has to go through before he or she gets this far. Lots of people will say I'm insane but that's not the case at all. I just can't go on living this life and thinking of Bernice in someone's arms. If Bernice had been let go her own way it would have been different but she always took notice of others. I have nothing and no one in the world to share my----or else perhaps I could go to them and forget. No one realizes what it's like to face a world like this without parents and I've been through Hell on Earth since a baby. I thought that when I had to work for my living that this would change but instead I still continue (just worry and disappointment) so I have decided that this world holds nothing for me. I'd be prepared to battle on and work day and night if I only had Bernice to care for. I am sorry for Ted and all his children and I realize what Bernice means to him and his children but I just can't go alone. I'd be happy if I thought Bernice and I would be together forever so I'm going to take her with me if it’s possible.
    Hope you will all understand this and remember I've been absolutely driven to this. Well, I will say goodbye to you all now and I hope that none of you will blame either of us because it is just Fate. I'd love to be buried somewhere near Bernice but of course I won't be able to argue where I'm put. Sell all my things and that will payfor my expense, if I win anything in the casket give it to Ted Skuse for his family.
    Again Adieu. If only I could have Bernice and be happy, just someone to have an interest in and someone to care for. I loved Bernice more than words can say. I'd like this letter to be printed so as everyone will see what life had done for me. Goodbye.
  • She was buried on 11 October 1938 in Goombungee Cemetery.

Charles Herbert Skuse

M, b. 31 May 1885, d. 2 February 1961

Children of Charles Herbert Skuse and Christina Peters

Claude Steward Skuse

M, b. circa 1915, d. 1939

Cyril Raymond Skuse

M, b. 1913
  • Cyril Raymond Skuse was born in 1913 in Queensland.
  • He was the son of Edward Irons Skuse and Charlotte Tereza Lucht.
  • At the age of 26 years, Cyril Raymond Skuse married Adelaide Dorothy VERRINDER in 1939 in Queensland.

Desomond Skuse

M, b. circa 1921, d. December 1921
  • Desomond Skuse was born circa 1921.
  • He was the son of George Stanley Skuse and Alice Howard.
  • Desomond Skuse died in December 1921 in Brisbane, Queensland.
  • He was buried on 17 December 1921 in Toowong Cemetery.

Edward Irons Skuse

M, b. 11 July 1890, d. 1 March 1977
  • Edward Irons Skuse was born on 11 July 1890 in Queensland.
  • He was the son of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming.
  • At the age of 22 years, 8 months and 1 day, Edward Irons Skuse married Charlotte Tereza Lucht, daughter of John (Frederick) Lucht and Wilhelmina (Louisa) Kann, on 12 March 1913 in Queensland.
  • Edward Irons Skuse appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1937 living at Goombungee. He was a farmer.
  • On 29 April 1937,his wife, Charlotte Tereza Lucht died in Goombungee, Queensland, at age 45.
  • On 9 October 1938,his daughter, Bernice Isabel Skuse died from a gun shot to her head in Gomoran, Queensland, at age 20. Below are three oaths sword at the inquest:-
    EDWARD IRONS SKUSE on oath states:-
    I am a widower, and live with my family at Gomoran near Goombungee. Bernice Isabell Skuse was my daughter. She was 20 years and about 4 months at the time of her death. My wife died in April 1937. Since my wife's death, the girl looked after the home for me. I have 5 sons. I knew Norman Kenneth McDowell for about four years prior to his death. I know that at the time of his death he was employed by Mr McDonald, Goombungee-Haden Road. Prior to this he used to work for Raftery and Woods, who both live in the direction of my home.
    My daughter and McDowell were keeping company for some time, probably getting on for twelve months. McDowell came to my home to see my daughter. As a rule he came on Sunday night and Wednesday night, not always Wednesday but one day in the week. My daughter attended dances and other amusements with McDowell, not alone with him, but in company with other friends. My daughter and McDowell became engaged somewhere about 3 months prior to her death. I did not know of their having had any quarrels prior to becoming engaged. I heard on the Sunday morning, the date of my daughter's death that she had broken off the engagement. My son Stanley told me that. He said also that 'Bernice wouldn't see Monday morning'. He said they were at the Haden dance on the night before, and that McDowell had made a threat, and had afterwards apologised to my son.
    On the night of my daughter's death, she and other members of the family and a youth named Griffin were in the kitchen. After tea we remained in the kitchen for quite a while. I went to bed about 7.30 or 7.45 pm. My son and daughter and Griffin remained in the kitchen after I had left. I do not remember my sons leaving the kitchen and going to bed. After I had been in bed for some time, I was aroused by a noise. I had been asleep. When I heard the noise, I got out of bed and went towards the kitchen. There is a 10 or 12 ft verandah extending along the kitchen from the rear door of the house. At my bedroom door I was met by Griffin. I do not remember whether I spoke to him. I ran into the kitchen and found the place in darkness. I went back to my own room and lighted a lamp in my own room, and returned to the kitchen. I took the light from my own bedroom. On entering the kitchen, I saw my daughter on the floor, face downwards, six or seven foot from the kitchen door. I grabbed hold of her arm, and saw that it was too late - she was gone. I went to Mr Berge at the Sunnyside Hotel. Gomoran, and told him what had happened, he telephoned Sergeant Martin at Goombungee. I saw Sergeant Martin later, and later still I saw Const Reilly, Det Elford and Det Nesbitt. I did not see McDowell about my home that night. On the following morning, in company with Const Rielly, I saw the body of McDowell in the paddock at the rear of my home. I saw a single-barrelled shotgun lying on the ground close to McDowell's body. I saw that portion of McDowell's head was blown away.
    I have known the youth Griffin only as a friend of my sons, only a couple of months. He recently arrived at my house in the company with one of my sons who had been away working, and at the time of the death of my daughter and McDowell, Griffin was staying at my place. Griffin and my daughter were not close friends. There was nothing between them more than the fact that he was staying at the place as a visitor. There was nothing that could cause McDowell to be jealous of their association. The only conclusion to which I can come is that McDowell did away with the girl through pure jealousy and without a doubt, following the shooting of the girl he went to the paddock and shot himself. I would not know McDowell's handwriting. I have never seen it. I am quite sure that there is no other person associated with my daughter's death other than McDowell.

    STANLEY LAWRENCE SKUSE on oath states:
    I am a single man, 23 years of age, and am at present residing with my father at Gomoran near Goombungee. Bernice Isobell Skuse is my sister. I knew Norman Kenneth McDowell. I had known him for several years.
    During that time he had worked for a man named Raftery at Gomoran, also for Woods at Gomoran, and for some time immediately prior to his death he was working for McDonald, on Goombungee-Haden road. I knew that he was keeping company with my sister for some time, for about 18 months, to my knowledge. They were going together, and they broke it off, and for about 18 months before my sister's death they were keeping company. I have been away in the country working, for about 3 years, coming home occasionally. During the occasions I was at home, I saw McDowell visiting my home. He came there to see my sister. I was home about 3 weeks before my sister's death. I think it was just when I came home that I heard McDowell and my sister were engaged. John Griffin came home with me on that occasion. He was at my home on the night of 9th October 1938, and is still there.
    From the time I returned home up till the date of my sister's death, I attended two dances with her. McDowell was present at both those dances. On the night prior to her death, that was a Saturday night, I attended a dance at the home of people named Smith at Boodua. I had attended a dance at Haden on the previous night that is the Friday night. My sister and McDowell were at that dance also. During the progress of the dance at Haden, my sister asked me to speak to McDowell, as he had made threats to her. She said he had told her she would not see Monday morning. I did speak to McDowell. I said I wanted an explanation as to the threats he made against Bernice, and he was very sorry for what he had said, and he apologised to me, and in my presence he told my sister he was very sorry for what he had said, and to take no notice.
    McDowell was a saxophone player, and played for the different dances around about the district. He was playing the saxophone at that particular dance on the Friday night. After the dance my sister and McDowell and I left in company, and McDowell parted with us at the entrance to McDonald's place, where he was employed. My sister and I came home together. That was the last time I saw McDowell alive. On the Sunday night I was in company with my father and brother and my sister and Griffin in the kitchen of our home, after tea. My father went to bed about 7.30 pm. I was not last in the kitchen. I retired at about 8 pm. One of my brothers, Griffin, and my sister Bernice were then in the kitchen. When I left they were all sitting and talking. When I left the kitchen and went into the house to go to bed, I did not see anybody about.
    After going to bed, I heard a terrible noise, which I thought sounded like a sheet of iron loose on the house. I gotout of bed, and met my father in the hallway, and went into the kitchen with him. I saw Griffin at that time. He was in the hallway too. The kitchen was in darkness then. We had a light in the kitchen, which was taken out of one of the bedrooms. In the kitchen I saw my sister lying on the floor, face downward, in a pool of blood. I lifted her head, and was satisfied that she was dead. My father then went to the Sunnyside Hotel and communicated with Sergt Martin of the Goombungee Police. I later saw Sergt Martin and Const Reilly of Goombungee, and later still saw Det Elford and Det Nesbitt. I remained there throughout the night. A search was made throughout the night for McDowell, for the reason that the Police officers returned to the house at intervals through the night. On the following morning at daybreak, I saw the body of McDowell in the paddock at the rear of my home. I was in company with Const Reilly. I saw a single barrelled shotgun grasped in McDowell's left hand. I saw that portion of his head was blown away.
    I would not know McDowell's handwriting. WITNESS LOOKS AT PHOTOGRAPHS - 'A' FOR IDENTIFICATION. My sister is in three of the photographs now shown to me, one of the others is of her alone, and the other is of my mother. Since I returned home in company with Griffin, I have been in close association with Griffin. There was nothing more between him and my sister than the fact he was staying at our house. McDowell would not have any cause for jealousy through the associations of my sister and Griffin. I know that McDowell used to ride his pony to my place when he came to see my sister. I saw his pony tied to a tree in a paddock opposite our home, the morning following the shooting. From my knowledge, and from what I have learned following the shooting, I am of the opinion that the whole thing was brought about by jealousy on the part of McDowell. There was no cause for such jealousy on his part. I am satisfied that McDowell shot my sister, and afterwards went into the paddock behind our place and shot himself.

    JOHN BERNARD GRIFFIN on oath states:-
    I am a single man, at present residing at the Skuses' home at Gomoran, and have been residing there since 20 Sept1938. Prior to that date I was employed near Kumbia, in company with the previous witness, Stanley Skuse. I was employed by my brother at that place; Stanley Skuse was employed at the same place. I had never been to Skuse's home prior to 20 September 1938. I knew Bernice Isobell Skuse - I did not know her prior to 20 September 1938.
    I knew Norman Kenneth McDowell. I had met him for the first time at the rodeo ball at Goombungee on 24September, I think it was. I met him at different times after that, at about three dances. Bernice Skuse was in attendance at those dances also. Stanley Skuse was at each of those dances. McDowell was playing the saxophone at those dances. After the dances, I went home with Stanley and Bernice Skuse in Sharp's truck, and from two of the dances McDowell rode his horse home to where he was working. One night McDowell came home with Stanley Skuse and Bernice Skuse and myself, from Haden, as far as the place where he was working. McDowell visited the girl on several occasions since I have been staying at Skuse's. He was quite friendly. There was no reason for him to be jealous of myself and the girl.
    I remember 9 October 1938. On that night after tea, the girl and her father and brothers and myself were in the kitchen. They retired to bed at intervals, leaving myself and the girl in the kitchen. It’s about 8.45 pm I am sitting down in the kitchen reading a newspaper, the girl was standing alongside me, the distance between us would be approx 4 inches. She was also reading portion of the newspaper. The paper was folded into two different portions, I was reading one and she was reading the other. While we were so engaged, I heard a scream from the girl. She turned and looked facing the kitchen door, which opens on to a verandah, and then screamed. I sat dumbfounded for a moment. I heard a shot and smelled gunpowder. Bernice fell on the floor beside me. There had been a light burning in the kitchen; it was blown out by the shot. Following that, I ran outside, but could not see anybody there.
    I went into the house and told the girl's father what had happened. I returned to the kitchen with the father and Stanley Skuse. A lamp was lighted in the kitchen, and I saw Bernice was lying on the floor of the kitchen, she was lying in a pool of blood. Stanley picked her up and had a look at her, I also looked at her and saw that her face was half blown away. She was dead then. I was present later when an examination was made of the kitchen wall.
    I saw a number of pellet shots in the wall in a direct line with the kitchen door and the spot where Bernice was standing at the time she was shot. At the time the shooting took place, I was sitting down, and Bernice was standing a short distance away from me. I am satisfied that the shot was fired from the kitchen verandah, immediately outside the kitchen door. The person who fired the shot must have moved away quickly; otherwise I would have seen the person when I went out. I later saw the Goombungee Police, also Det Elford and Det Nesbitt.
    I remained about the house till daylight. I never saw the body of McDowell. I think the shooting was the result of jealousy on the part of McDowell. If he was jealous of me, he had no reason to be jealous of my association with the girl. I am satisfied that it was McDowell who shot Bernice Skuse, and from what I have learned, I am satisfied that he afterwards went into the paddock at the rear of the place and shot himself.
    The following is a copy of the suicide note left by McDowell.
    To all my friends who thought I was happy. Dear friends,
    No doubt you will think what I have done is an awful (sic) thing. But there isn't anyone in this world who realizes what Bernice meant to me. If we weren't engaged and this happened it would be different but no-one understands just what an Orphan has to go through before he or she gets this far. Lots of people will say I'm insane but that's not the case at all. I just can't go on living this life and thinking of Bernice in someone's arms. If Bernice had been let go her own way it would have been different but she always took notice of others. I have nothing and no one in the world to share my----or else perhaps I could go to them and forget. No one realizes what it's like to face a world like this without parents and I've been through Hell on Earth since a baby. I thought that when I had to work for my living that this would change but instead I still continue (just worry and disappointment) so I have decided that this world holds nothing for me. I'd be prepared to battle on and work day and night if I only had Bernice to care for. I am sorry for Ted and all his children and I realize what Bernice means to him and his children but I just can't go alone. I'd be happy if I thought Bernice and I would be together forever so I'm going to take her with me if it’s possible.
    Hope you will all understand this and remember I've been absolutely driven to this. Well, I will say goodbye to you all now and I hope that none of you will blame either of us because it is just Fate. I'd love to be buried somewhere near Bernice but of course I won't be able to argue where I'm put. Sell all my things and that will payfor my expense, if I win anything in the casket give it to Ted Skuse for his family.
    Again Adieu. If only I could have Bernice and be happy, just someone to have an interest in and someone to care for. I loved Bernice more than words can say. I'd like this letter to be printed so as everyone will see what life had done for me. Goodbye.
  • On 11 October 1938,Edward Irons Skuse's daughter, Bernice Isabel Skuse was buried in Goombungee Cemetery at age 20.
  • Edward Irons Skuse was listed as the next of kin of Stanley Edward Skuse when she enlisted in the Australian Army on 18 May 1942 in Brisbane. He gave his father Edward as his next of kin and was living in Goombungee at the time he enlisted. He was discharged on 19 Dec 1945 with the rank of Corporal in the 3rd RD (REC SQ) EX 6 ACS.
  • Edward Irons Skuse appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1949 living at 1 Park Street, Toowoomba. Edward was a labourer.
  • He appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1949 living at Morcotta Street, Goombungee. He was a horse trainer.
  • In May 1954 Ned was referred to as a veteran trainer, currently training a local horses for Herby Wockner.
  • Edward Irons Skuse died on 1 March 1977 in Queensland at age 86.

Children of Edward Irons Skuse and Charlotte Tereza Lucht

George Stanley Skuse

M, b. 21 November 1894, d. June 1964
  • George Stanley Skuse was born on 21 November 1894 in Queensland.
  • He was the son of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming.
  • At the age of 25 years, George Stanley Skuse married Alice Howard in 1920 in Brisbane, Queensland.
  • George Stanley Skuse died in June 1964 in Brisbane, Queensland, at age 69.
  • He was buried on 8 June 1964 in Toowong Cemetery.

Children of George Stanley Skuse and Alice Howard

Gordon Melville Skuse

M, b. 8 May 1912, d. 11 January 1958
  • Gordon Melville Skuse was born on 8 May 1912 in Goombungee, Queensland.
  • He was the son of John Henry Skuse and Wilhelmina Dorothea Margaret Lucht.
  • At the age of 20 years, Gordon Melville Skuse married Daisy Isabel White in 1933 in Queensland.
  • Gordon Melville Skuse enlisted in the Australian Army on 7 November 1942 in Archerfield, Brisbane, He was living at Toowoomba at the time he enlisted and gave his next of kin as his wife Daisy. He was discharged on 12 Feb 1948 with the rank of Corporal in the 1st Australian Prov Coy BCOF.
  • Gordon Melville Skuse died on 11 January 1958 in Queensland at age 45.
  • He was buried on 13 January 1958 in Drayton & Toowoomba Cemetery.

Henry Skuse

M, b. 1838, d. December 1927
  • Henry Skuse was born in 1838 in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England. His birth was registered in the March Quarter of 1838 in the Clifton Registration District.
  • He enlisted in the British Army He served in India during the Indian Uprising.
  • At the age of 40 years, Henry Skuse married Margaret Eliza Fleming on 22 August 1878 in Windsor, Preston, Nova Scotia, Canada. They were married by license. Henry was a 37 year old Widower, and a soldier living in Halifax. Margaret was a 27 year old spinster living in Windsor. He was born in Bristol and she in Windsor. His parents were William, a carpenter and Elizabeth and hers William, a shoemaker and C. Amelia. Witnesses were Theo Woodworth ? and Emily Irons.
  • Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming immigrated to Australia between 1880 and 1881. Their eldest son James William was born in Bristol in 1879 and their next child in Queensland in 1881. Perhaps Henry had to return to England to be discharged from the British Army before they were able to immigrate to Australia.
  • On 3 December 1888 the Courier Mail reported that Henry was elected as a committee member for the Goombungee school as was W. Douglass, Thomas Perkins, J Peters and GJH Wieck.
  • In 1901 Henry was listed as a farmer of Goombungee in the Crow's Nest Post Office Directory.
  • Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1903 living at Goombungee. Henry was a farmer and Margaret carried out domestic duties. Their son John Henry also farmed at Goombungee as did a James William Skuse.
  • Henry Skuse was the local librarian at Goombungee in January 1915.
  • He was listed as the next of kin of James William Skuse when she enlisted in the Australian Army on 16 July 1915 in Brisbane. He was 36 years, 4 months old, born Bristol England and gave his father Henry of Goombungee as his next of kin. He was an unmarried labourer. He had a dark complexion, blue eyes and black hair.
  • In August 1919 Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming lived in Goombungee. They moved to Newmarket in Bribane around 1920.
  • In August 1921,his wife, Margaret Eliza Fleming died in Brisbane, Queensland.
  • Henry Skuse died in December 1927 in Brisbane, Queensland.
  • He was buried on 10 December 1927 in Toowong Cemetery.

Children of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming

James Alexander Skuse

M, b. 4 July 1883, d. 29 June 1966

James William Skuse

M, b. 1879, d. 6 August 1916
  • James William Skuse was born in 1879 in Bristol, Gloucestershire, England. His birth was registered in the Barton Regis District of Briston in June 1879.
  • He was the son of Henry Skuse and Margaret Eliza Fleming.
  • James William Skuse immigrated to Australia between 1880 and 1881. He came with his parents from England.
  • He appeared on the Electoral Roll in 1903 living at Goombungee. He was a farmer.
  • He began military service on 16 July 1915 in Brisbane. He was 36 years, 4 months old, born Bristol England and gave his father Henry of Goombungee as his next of kin. He was an unmarried labourer. He had a dark complexion, blue eyes and black hair.
  • James William Skuse was killed in action on 6 August 1916 in France.

John Henry Skuse

M, b. 5 March 1881, d. 6 September 1950

Children of John Henry Skuse and Wilhelmina Dorothea Margaret Lucht

Leslie George Skuse

F, b. 1916, d. 1976

Leslie Mervyn Skuse

M, b. 17 November 1913, d. 1978
  • Leslie Mervyn Skuse was born on 17 November 1913 in Toowoomba, Queensland.
  • He was the son of John Henry Skuse and Wilhelmina Dorothea Margaret Lucht.
  • Leslie Mervyn Skuse enlisted in the Australian Army on 16 May 1942 in Brisbane He was living in Toowoomba at the time he enlisted and gave his next of kin as Rose Skuse. He was discharged on 4 Jan 1946 with the rank of Gunner in the 23rd Australian Heavy A A Bty.
  • Leslie Mervyn Skuse died in 1978 in Queensland.