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Three die in house near Troy; asphyxiation blamed

ROBERTS, OVERSTREET, CASSATT, HUGGINS, MILLER, BARKER, DOWNING, BURKETT, CARRUTHERS, NORTHUP, GILCHRIST

Posted By: Volunteer: Sherri
Date: 4/11/2021 at 23:21:02

Three die in house near Troy; asphyxiation blamed

Why and how three people died in a Davis County farm home Tuesday night was still being probed morning by law enforcement officials.

The Davis County Sheriff's Office and the Iowa Bureau of Criminal investigation (BCI) is trying to determine how Mr. and Mrs. Rex Roberts, route 1, Bloomfield, and Mrs. Charlotte Overstreet of Bloomfield died.

The three were found early Wednesday morning in the Robertses farm home northeast of Troy.

Davis County Sheriff Ray Dykes said this morning as far as is known, the three died of gas asphyxiation. Authorities were waiting results from the BCI lab in Des Moines and autopsies to make a final determination. That report is expected sometime today.

The three were found about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday after employes at the Davis County Hospital became concerned when Mrs. Overstreet, a registered nurse, did not show up for work.

Ivadale Roberts, who lives near the Roberts farm, was called and she went to the Roberts home where it had been reported that Mrs. Overstreet had gone the night before. She found the bodies and the Davis County Sheriff's Office and Davis County Ambulance Service was called.

When authorities arrived at the Roberts home, the house was filled with gas. The two women were found lying face down on a bed in the bedroom and Roberts was found in the hallway.

Dykes said there were no signs of a struggle in the home and there were no marks on the fully-clothed bodies.

Two jets on a kitchen range were on and a 500 gallon LP gas tank at the home was empty, Dykes said.

Dykes said authorities think the three died early Tuesday evening. He said Mrs. Overstreet received a call to go to the Roberts home about 5 p.m. or 5:30 p.m. Tuesday. Mrs. Roberts had reportedly been ill.

Two BCI investigators and two BCI laboratory agents were called in and authorities spent most of the day Wednesday combing the house for clues as to how the three people died.

Several items were taken to the BCI lab Wednesday night and authorities sealed house off Wednesday night in case further investigation was warranted.

Dykes noted that the investigation revealed that the kitchen stove, which was on when authorities arrived, was checked and the gas tank filled. The stove worked properly.

The bodies of Mr. and Mrs. Roberts were taken to the Wagler Funeral Home in Bloomfield where scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday. The funerals will be conducted by the Rev. Donald Slaughter with burial in the Troy Cemetery. A visitation is scheduled from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Rex Roberts, 40, was born Jan. 1, 1938 in Davis County to Vernette and Opal May Cassatt Roberts. He had been a lifelong resident of Davis County and was affiliated with the Bloomfield Eagles and the Ottumwa Elks. He had been active in the Davis County A Club.

The couple were married Nov. 19, 1955 in Bloomfield.

He is survived by one daughter, Kathy Huggins of Bloomfield; one son, Danny, a student at Iowa State University; three brothers, Venus of Blockton, Arlo of Troy and Jack of Blair, Okla.; one sister, Karen Miller of Pulaski; and one step-grandson.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers.

Wilda Mae Roberts, 39, was born April 25, 1939 in Davis County to Donald and Alene Barker.

A beautician, she was affiliated with the Bloomfield Christian Church and she had also been active in the Davis County A. Club.

Survivors include her daughter and son, her parents, Donald and Alene Barker of Bloomfield; one brother, Leon of Bloomfield; one sister, Donna Downing of Bloomfield; and one step grandson.

A memorial for both Mr. and Mrs. Roberts has been established to the Davis County A Club.

Charlotte Jean Overstreet, 38, 105 E. Poplar, Bloomfield, was born June 24, 1940 in Van Buren County to Willard and Evelyn Burkett Carruthers.

She was a member of the Bloomfield Christian Church, the Davis County Nurses Association and was a surgical nurse at the Davis County Hospital.

She married Rodney Eugene Overstreet on July 6, 1957 at Keosauqua. He survives.

Also surviving are her parents; one daughter, Rhonda Northup of Denver; four sons, Jay in college at Oskaloosa, Bob in college at Burlington, Rollin and Rodney at home; two sisters, Sue Gilchrist of Burlington, Debbie Carruthers of Longmont, Colo.; five brothers, Dr. Richard Carruthers of Keosauqua, Darrell Carruthers of Billings, Mont., Steve Carruthers of Burlington, Fred Carruthers of Mediapolis and Dan Carruthers of Enid, Okla.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Friday at the Bloomfield Christian Church, conducted by the Rev. Donald Slaughter. Burial will be in the IOOF Cemetery. The casket will be closed at the beginning of the service.

The body will be taken from the Priester Funeral Chapel to the church at noon Friday.

A memorial has been established.

(**NOTE: Caption beneath picture: BCI investigates, "Davis County Sheriff Ray Dykes, Medical Examiner, Henry Perry and Deputy Sheriff Gene Horn talk to Investigation (BCI) Wednesday morning before the BCI began its investigation in the deaths of Mr. and Mrs. Rex Roberts and Mrs. Charlotte Overstreet, whose bodies were found in the house Wednesday morning."

Source: "The Hazel Stanford Obituary Collection", Pg. 161, Keosauqua Public Library, Keosauqua, IA


 

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