Leon Reporter, Leon, Iowa
Thursday, October 4, l900
JOHN EDWARD BROOKS was born in Toledo, Ohio, August 8, l866, died at Leon, Iowa, Sept. 29, l900, aged 34 years, l month and 2l days.
He was the only son of JOHN and MARY BROOKS, his father dying before he was born; and his mother a few years later. His early life was spent at Smyrna, Clarke County, Iowa, where his first education was obtained, and later he attended school at Osceola.
He came to Leon in the spring of l882 and for two years attended the Leon Public Schools, after which he entered Parsons College at Fairfield, but in a short time had to give up his studies on account of ill health and returned to Leon. He then attended Moran's short-hand school at Iowa City, from which he graduated in the spring of l885, and on Jan. l, l887 was appointed official court reporter by Judge J.W. Harvey, one of the presiding judges of the 3rd Judicial District of Iowa. As a court reporter he was an efficient official and formed a large acquaintance with the legal fraternity of the district, being a favorite with all with whom he came in contact.
After serving as reporter for three years, he resigned for the purpose of engaging in the law as his chosen profession and entered the law department of the State University until May, l89l, when he passed a very successful examination before the Supreme Court and was admitted to the bar. In the following June, owing to the failure of W.S. Johnson's health, Stookey & Brooks became proprietors of the Decatur County Journal, and he was engaged in newspaper work until January l3, l893, after which he located at Lamoni in the practice of law, remaining there a little over a year after which he returned to Leon and formed a law partnership with N. P. Bullock under the firm name of Bullock & Brooks. This firm was dissolved by mutual consent in the spring of l895 when Mr. Bullock removed to Oklahoma and the firm of Stookey & Brooks was organized and continued until January of the present year, when on acount of Mr. Brooks' continued ill health he retired from the firm.
He was appointed justice of the peace to succeed N.P. Bullock in l895, and was later elected to the office and served two years.
His health had been failing for more than a year and from the first of March to the middle of May he was confined to his bed all the time. He then improved and was able to get out on the street for a short time, and about the first of July went to Excelsior Springs, Mo., where he remained several weeks in hope that the water would restore his health, but returned home without having received any special benefit. The latter part of July he was up for a few days, but since the first of August he was unable to be away from home and was confined to his bed all the time except a few days. On Friday, Sept. 2l, there was a marked change for the worse and despite medical skill and loving hands to nurse him, his spirit took its flight at 4 o'clock Saturday morning.
Here in Leon where he was so well known, ED was a universal favorite with all, both young and old. His cheerful disposition won to him the friendship of all who knew him. Kind and generous, his purse and assistance was always at the command of the poor and needy, and many a person has cause to remember his charity. In his death the community loses one of its brightest young men and there is universal regret over his death.
He united with the M.E. Church the past summer, being baptized by Rev. Joseph Stephen.
He was an honored member of Hesperia Lodge No. 33, K. of P. and here he will be sadly missed by his brother Knights as he had always taken an active interest in the work of the order.
Three sisters, MRS. LIZZIE STOOKEY, and MISS IDA BROOKS, of Leon, and MRS. CORA FITHIAN, of St. Paul, are left to mourn the loss of an only and devoted brother; MRS. FITHIAN being the only one absent from the funeral. She had been here for several weeks but was compelled to return home and owing to her health, was unable to make the journey again. He had only one other living relative, an aunt, MRS. MARIE J. GASTON, of Deadwood, S.D.
The funeral services were held from the home of his sister, MRS. MARION F. STOOKEY, Sunday afternoon at 3 o'clock. After short services by his Pastor, Rev. Joseph Stephen, the Kinghts of Pythias took charge of and conducted the ceremonies at the grave, the lodge attending in a body to pay the last sad tribute of respect to their beloved brother. The funeral concourse was one of the largest ever in Leon. Many beautiful floral offerings attested to the love for the dead and sympathy for the living. The interment was in the Leon Cemetery, the remains being laid to rest in a marble vault.
Copied by Cordelia Suzann
"With permission from the Leon Journal Reporter"
December 4, 2002