“Burning Bridges.” Click arrow to play.1
Friday, August 16, 1963
When Lonzy left his house Friday afternoon, we’re not sure where he went; because he didn’t show up for work at 4:30. He did go to the steel works at around 5:00 p.m., but that was just to pick up his paycheck. At about 5:45 p.m., Hepinstall foreman Curtis Falcon observed Lonzy in his vehicle at the corner of Felicity and Magazine Street.2
Half Moon barmaid Esther Walgamotte told police Lonzy was in the Half Moon Bar around 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. He was by himself. He bought a beer and asked two or three other patrons if they’d like a drink. They declined. According to Walgamotte, Lonzy pulled out a handful of cash and put it on the bar, telling the patrons he had plenty of money to buy them a drink. One of the patrons told Lonzy to put his money away and that he’d buy his own drinks. Another patron picked up Lonzy’s cash and “put it in the top pocket of his shirt.” Not long after this, Lonzy left with the man who put the money in his pocket.3
About 8:00 p.m. a neighbor, Mrs. Joseph Reeves, stopped by at Bonnie’ house on St Mary Street to chat. Bonnie told Mrs. Reeves that she’d bought a steak for Lonzy’s supper and was expecting him home around 8:30 p.m. to eat. She also told Mrs. Reeves that Lonzy was “suppose to have cashed a $100 paycheck” that afternoon and that when he came home for supper she expected him to leave money with her to “pay a grocery bill.” Bonnie also shared with Mrs. Reeves that she was expecting another child.4
1. Music attribution: Instrumentals by Russell Garfield Thomas, “Burning Bridges,” Catalogue, Thomas Standridge Music, 2007, www.thomasstandridgemusic.com.
2. “Supplementary Report.” New Orleans Police Department. 17 Aug 1963.
3. “Statement of Esther Walgamotte.” New Orleans Police Department. 19 Aug 1963. The police report is not clear whose pocket the money went in.
4. “Hunt Orleans Man In Park Slay Probe.” New Orleans States-Item, 19 Aug 1963, pp. 1, 11.