Frederick and May – The Finale

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Freddie and Mae Roach - The Second Round

Closing arguments were very brief because the attorney’s wanted the jury to deliberate.  Kirkland summing up the evidence against May said that May had had improper relations with 14 “affinities” that were named in the divorce petition, but that that was only a partial list.  Brady countered that the case was strictly about money and that John Roach was the one behind the whole divorce action.

As the jury was sent to deliberate, May met with the press.   She told them that she and her mother would be penniless if the jury allowed her divorce with no alimony.  She also said that she had not received a cent from anyone in six months.  May also said she felt that her husband had little chance to win the trial and if did she would feel like she had been “kangarooed”.  The question that the jury was deliberating was whether May had been guilty of misconduct as charged by Freddie.

The jury delivered a sealed verdict after five hours of deliberation.  The jury members had purposely misled the press by telling them that they would tell the verdict if their names were kept out of the press.  They told the reporters that May was guilty.  But the jury exonerates May on charges of Immorality. 

 “It really was a surprise to all of us”. stated James Brady, May’s attorney. 

Judge McDonald then allowed for a new trial to begin May, 18, 1912. And in a surprise move, Judge McDonald voids the jury’s decision that May was not guilty.  His basis for the decision was the chauffeur’s testimony of the road trip from Louisville to Chicago.

On June 23, 1912 Freddie is awarded the divorce from May and owes her no alimony. 

The Ending

All is well that ends well…  that is until 8 months later.  On February 7, 1913 Freddie and May marry for the third time.  Their divorce was not even final as they had to wait a year to remarry. 

Everything is quiet for less than a year.  On February 1, 1914 Freddie dies in St. Joseph hospital in Bloomington, In from kidney failure.  Freddie had been in the hospital for six weeks.  May was not there with him although his mother was. 

May continues her marriage addiction and marries Robert “Bertie” Shaw on July 27, 1914, almost six months after Freddie died.  Bertie and May Roach were married in Goshen, IN because he had only been divorced from his previous wife Bessie for seven months.  Persons divorced in Illinois need to wait 12 months to remarry so Bertie and May travelled around the world and planned to renew their vows when they returned.  I could find no mention that they ever were remarried.

However, On October 15, 1919 May did marry Lieutenant W.S. Dunderdale at the La Salle Hotel. And once again, she divorced him August 10, 1924 for beating her and knocking her unconscious with a beer glass.  She was awarded $15.00 a week alimony.

That’s the last that I can find on May.  I’m sure she enjoyed men, booze and their money during the rest of her life. 

Coming Next...The short tragic life of Frederick's son

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