Denied Estate as “Widow”

Judge Gillespie Dismissed Case; No Proof To Sustain Claim

Deciding that Mrs. Marcella Hockman had failed to prove a common law marriage, with the late Dr. Will L. Cole, Judge Glenn C. Gillespie on Tuesday afternoon in Circuit Court dismissed the suit brought by Mrs. Hockman and her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Frank E. Groove [sic], of Oxford, against Cyril L. Cole, executor of the estate of his father. Cole was given costs.

Mrs. Hockman, formerly Marcella Groover, claimed a widow’s share of the doctor’s estate and asserted that she had lived openly with the physician as his wife.

Mr. and Mrs. Frank Groover, parents of Mrs. Hockman, also asked that a $1,750 mortgage on their home formerly held by the physician, be agreement that upon his death the set aside because of the doctor’s mortgage be cancelled [sic].

The mortgage was first assigned to Cyril L. Cole and then to Frank Olive, Cashier of the Oxford Savings Bank, who had taken steps to foreclose it when the present action was brought.

Judge Gillespie ruled that the failure of Mrs. Hockman to file any claim against the Dr. Cole estate as his widow at the time of the probation and her act in signing a receipt with her parents, after the family was paid $50, was evidence that she did not consider herself the wife of Dr. Cole back in 1928 after his death. He said he could see no reason for sustaining her claim of a marriage at this time.

Source: Oxford Leader, October 5, 1934.

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