Death of Stephen Luce

Over the years the only cause of death I’ve ever seen for Stephen Luce is “apoplexy”. That is, he died of what we would now call a stroke. I’ve been to his grave in City Cemetery (Plot F12), seen his red sandstone headstone (now mostly sunken), and looked at the sexton’s index cards for the burial.

“Old guy dies of stroke.” I can’t think of anything less newsworthy.

Imagine my surprise this morning when I was googling around for background on Malatiah Luce, and came across this.

Found Dead.About five o’clock yesterday morning, Stephen Luce, over sixty years of age, and who resided in the Tenth Ward, was found dead in the water sect near the residence of Mr. David Candland, in the Ninth Ward. When discovered, Luce was lying on his back, his face, however, was not covered by water, showing that death had not ensued from drowning. A basket containing provisions, &c., was found a few feet from where he lay. It is supposed that he was either seized with some kind of a fit, from which he did not recover, or that he died from physical exhaustion, superinduced by heavy drinking. The remains were removed to the house of one of his relatives in the Eighth Ward, and were, we understand to be interred today.” (Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah, Wed., May 1, 1872, page 9.)

The early Luces were a rough crowd. We already know that.

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