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Dr James Howard Snook

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Dr James Howard Snook

  • Birth 17 Sep 1879 South Lebanon, Warren County, Ohio, USA
  • Death 28 Feb 1930 Columbus, Franklin County, Ohio, USA
  • Burial Columbus, Franklin County, Ohio, USA
  • Plot Grave plot 243, Section 87
  • Memorial ID 14429029

James Howard Snook was executed in 1930 for murdering 24-year-old Theora Hix. He was buried in an anonymous grave at Green Lawn Cemetery so that his headstone wouldn't be defiled. Later, a gravestone was added with only part of his name. Snook was a world champion pistol shooter who won a gold medal for the United States at the 1920 Olympics in Antwerp, Belgium. He was also an accomplished veterinarian. The head of the Veterinary Medicine Department at OSU, he invented the "Snook Hook," a medical device still used in animal spaying procedures. He met Theora in 1926 while she was a medical student at the university, and the two began an affair that lasted three years. But Hix decided that he wanted to end the tumultuous affair and get rid of Theora permanently.

On June 14, 1929, two sixteen-year-old boys found Theora's body in the weeds at the rifle range on Fisher Road near McKinley, where Snook had been teaching her to shoot. She had been severely beaten, and her throat was slashed. Snook quickly became a prime suspect. During police questioning, which lasted nineteen hours, he confessed to the crime. In addition, the police found blood on his clothing, in his car, and the murder weapons--both splattered with Theora's blood. After a scandalous, month-long trial, the jury deliberated only twenty-eight minutes before it found Snook guilty. On August 14, 1929, he was remanded to the State Penitentiary on Spring Street. On February 28, 1930, he was put to death in Ohio's electric chair. A short funeral service followed at the King Avenue Methodist Church, Reverend Isaac Miller officiating. Snook was survived by his wife Helen, a young daughter (name unknown), and his parents, Albert and Mary Snook.

Family Members


  • Created by: Bobette
  • Added: 28 May 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 14429029
  • Lori Haus
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Dr James Howard Snook (17 Sep 1879–28 Feb 1930), Find A Grave Memorial no. 14429029, citing Green Lawn Cemetery, Columbus, Franklin County, Ohio, USA ; Maintained by Bobette (contributor 46842310) .