Jack Wayne Humphrey
“Jackie”
30 Years Old

May 9, 1947 to November 23, 1977

How do we summarize Jack Humphrey as a person; what he gave and meant to his family and friends?

Jack was a boy with a plan, from when he was a little boy to the day he was viciously and cowardly murdered. He was fixing or building something: motors, hot rods, laying cement, carpentry and electrical work.

Being a husband who tried his best to “give his all,” Jack was a good and doting father to his three daughters, a good son to Joe and Wilda Humphrey, brother to Larry, Gary, Keith, Bonnie Humphrey and Kathy Humphrey Birkle and “a helping-hand” to friends and neighbors...Jack was “there.”

Jack took time to do things right. He was the kind of person who would do just about anything for anyone…just like our Dad. He could “make something out of nothing” or leave it better than he had found it because it was his nature and his Gift.

Jack loved kids. What a cool guy he was with his nieces and nephews. He loved family get-togethers, hiding Easter Eggs and taking his daughters “trick-or-treating.” Jack made “a big deal” of Santa Claus and Christmas. He would stop in the middle of what he was working on to take his girls for ice cream or hook the sled to his motorcycle to pull the kids behind him because the oldest girl said “Dad, we’re bored”...that was Jack, “Teddy Bear Deluxe.”

Big-game-hunting was something Jack loved to do with Mom and Dad, his sister and her husband and his brothers. They would start planning in June to go to Jackson Hole, Wyoming in November. But...the year of 1977, Jack let his wife talk him into not going with the family elk hunting...if he had only gone as usual, he might still be alive today.

If you had a vehicle problem, Jack would tell you how to “limp” it home so he could fix it, anything from 18-wheelers to small cars. He sat with our Mom and drew her the blueprints for a new house. Then, Dad and the kids put it up. But Mom never got to move into her new house because Jack was murdered and everything came to a stand-still.

Jack’s plan was to retire into his own business in five years. He was building a big shop to work on big trucks, transmissions, brownies and power take-offs.

Jack loved country music; you would hear him singing-along with the radio as he worked.

Today, Jack would be a Grandpa. How sad, his three granddaughters missed knowing their Granddad. Did I mention the love and guidance his three daughters were robbed of?...the special events in their lives “Daddy” did not get to share as it was all taken away...taken was Jack’s right to life...a loving son, brother and friend from his family taken away…..our lives turned upside-down and still walking free, 28 years later…

No Justice For Jack!

CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE MURDER

Jack was murdered November 23rd, 1977.

In the early morning hours at his home in Evansville, Wyoming, Jack was shot in the back of the head while asleep in his bed.

Within minutes, Jack’s wife’s special modified .243 hunting rifle was found in the driveway, less than six inches from the back door, wiped-clean of fingerprints.

The investigation was poorly-conducted. The local sheriff’s department said Jack’s death was suicide. Finally, the coroner’s inquest was in 1978 at our insistence. The inquest determined Jack had been shot by “persons or person unknown,” murdered. His wife Rita pled “the fifth” at the inquest. To this day, she has never spoken which was the beginning of a GOD-AWFUL battle for justice at the mercy of a “good ole-boy” system.

Our parents pled to the governor. He assigned two state division of criminal investigation agents to the case. A grand jury convened in 1980. Rita (wife) was indicted for First-Degree Murder, Premeditated with Malice. A.J.P. County Judge dropped the charges before any formal district court proceedings took place.

By 2000, Evansville had a new Police Chief Zack Gentile. He re-opened the case “total refusal of help/cooperation from the local sheriff.” Chief Gentile had to start from scratch and that he did! On March 5th, 2004, Rita Humphrey was recharged. On May 26th, 2004, she was bound-over. The trial was set for January 3rd, 2005...at last!...........Wrong!...December 2nd, 2004, the judge dismissed the case. The district attorney filed an appeal with the Wyoming Supreme Court…..28 years and still no justice.

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Jack Humphrey