STRANGE GH: Body of missing woman found in unlikely place

Jan 16, 2012

With flowers in hand, Ida said she was headed to Grand Haven, but intended to pay a visit to her mother’s grave at Spring Lake Cemetery on the way.

Ida, the youngest of five daughters, was born to George and Sarah Taylor in 1878. At the time Ida went missing, she was 46 and had never been married.

Ida lived a somewhat lonely existence with her sister, Marie Beaudry, at her residence at 219 Second St. in Grand Haven.

Marie was a widow. Her husband, Nazaire — who established the popular Beaudry & Co. dry goods store — died in 1915.

Ida deeply missed her mother, Sarah, who had passed away after a prolonged illness at the age of 83 on June 28, 1920. Ida frequently visited her father, George, at his farmhouse in Spring Lake; and, while there, routinely visited her mother’s grave at the Spring Lake Cemetery a short distance away. She often carried flowers in hand to place upon her mother’s grave.

On the afternoon of April 29, George traveled to Grand Haven on business and became concerned upon learning his daughter had not arrived in the city. Ida failed to arrive at the home of Marie Beaudry; thus her sister became worried, as well.

Family and friends inquired at several places in Grand Haven that Ida frequented, but gained no information that she ever arrived in Grand Haven that day. George Taylor, the last to see Ida, recalled that the route his daughter said she was to travel included a stop at the cemetery.

By early evening, Marie began a search, retracing her sister’s steps back to the cemetery. There, she made a shocking discovery. Ida lay dead, with the flowers she picked earlier that day beside her, upon her mother’s grave.

Coroner Henry J. Boer was summoned to the scene. He determined that there was no foul play and no inquest was necessary. Boer concluded that the death was from natural causes; likely a heart attack.

An article published in the May 1, 1922, Grand Haven Tribune noted that Taylor “had not been in the best of health for some time.” But some believed Ida died of a broken heart after her mother’s passing.

Her funeral took place at her sister’s home in Grand Haven on May 2 and her burial followed in Spring Lake Cemetery.

Ida is buried next to her mother; virtually the same location where she dropped dead. Her father joined them in 1927 when he passed away at the age of 90.

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