By Bob Weaver
The 1975 murder of George Duskey, 84, at Richardson is one of the most brutal murders ever committed in Calhoun County, excluding the decapitation of Peter Sauborne during the Civil War and the 50-plus stab wound murder of Irene Wilson in 1963.
Sauborne's decapitation was related to the partisan conflict of the war and Wilson's murder was a crime of passion.
But George Duskey's murder was said to be over a few dollars.
Duskey, a grandson of famous Civil War Moccasin Ranger Daniel Duskey, was beaten to death with his own cane with dozens of strikes to his head and body, his body was then thrown on a heating stove, likely part of a plan to burn the house and cover the killing.
The house did not burn. A newspaper account said after Duskey's body was draped across an open flame stove, the fire had blown out because of an open kitchen door. "Other places in the two story house showed of attempts to set the structure ablaze," the paper reported.
Duskey's body was discovered several days later by a neighbor who was checking on his well-being."
Former Calhoun Sheriff Allen Parsons, who had a 33-year-law enforcement career, said it was the most gruesome killing he encountered.
Shortly after the discovery of the body, State Police arrested four men connected to the incident, Roy Lee Stump, 18, and his brother Charles W. Stump, of Gilmer Station WV; Russell Delbert Lost, 30, of Linn WV; and Robert A. Shaffer, 19, of Big Bend.
Cpl. W. A. Burns of the State Police and Sheriff Park Richards said that they found no signs of forced entry, indicating the subjects were acquainted with Duskey. The officers said the cane used to beat Duskey to death was broken into several pieces.
The officers said one or more of the men appeared to have made sandwiches for themselves.
All went to trial in Grantsville and received sentences, except one of the men reportedly remained in a car during the murder and was reportedly given a lesser sentence.
Two of the men involved in the Duskey murder, the Stump brothers of Gilmer County, Roy Lee and Charles, were shot to death years later by Mel Waddell on Toler Fork in Gilmer County, related to a problem the men had with Waddell's daughter.
A report indicated the brothers threw rocks at Waddell's house, reportedly over a conflict they had with Waddell's daughter.
After leaving the scene, Waddell reportedly went in pursuit of the men, blocking the Stump vehicle, after which tempers escalated and Waddell shot them to death.
Waddell never went to trial for their deaths.