Since 18 November 1978, numerous people associated with Peoples Temple
and Jonestown have died. Each death permanently removes part of the Jonestown
story, and makes it more imperative to recover that which remains.
The following is a list of people whose obituaries were
published in the newspaper cited after each reference. Please note: the
dates indicate the day the obituary was published and its location, rather
than the date of death. These obituaries can be also found on the web
at various proprietary news services, such as Lexis-Nexis.
The people are listed in alphabetical order, not in chronological order
of their deaths.
- Paula Adams, Temple leader and companion to Laurence Mann (10/26/83, Washington Post)
- Monica Bagby, whose alliance with Vernon Gosney led them to approach Leo Ryan with a request to leave Jonestown – and who herself was wounded along with Gosney during the Port Kaituma shooting – died on June 14, 2009. A memorial tribute site for her – under her adopted name of "Monika Sharron Bagby" – is here.
- Charles Beikman, who served five years in a Guyana prison in connection with deaths of Sharon Amos and her children (approximately 2001, in Indiana) (reference to his death in this story).
- Madeline Brooks, Jonestown survivor (May 14, 2003, in Arizona) (legacy.com).
- Marian Campbell, Jonestown survivor (January 1, 1985) (legacy.com).
- Ross Case, Jones’ pastoral associate in Indianapolis who was perhaps most directly responsible for bringing Jones to northern California, eventually repudiated both him and Peoples Temple (February 20, 2006, in Arizona) (legacy.com).
- Patti Chastain, 48, Temple survivor (February 5, 1995). See remembrance here.
- Essie Clark, a member of Peoples Temple whose application to emigrate to Jonestown was turned down for medical reasons – and who remained an ardent supporter of Jim Jones even after the deaths of November 1978 – died on September 25, 2000. She was also the mother of Monica Bagby.
- Richard Clark, who
survived the deaths in Jonestown by leaving the community on the morning
of 18 November, died in 2003. Rev. Clark, who was born in Mississippi,
- Richard William Cordell, one of the Cordells, a key Indianapolis family in Temple history
(December 1, 1983 in Puyallup, WA, according to Cordell family genealogy)
- Grover Cleveland Davis, Temple survivor (January 17, 1993, in Bellevue, Washington)
- Miguel de Pina, Jonestown survivor, was ill with stomach cancer in November 1978 and died that December. Remembrances appear here.
- Julius Evans, who survived the deaths in Jonestown by leaving the community with his family and a handful of other residents early on the morning of November 18, died in 2004.
- Kay Henderson, former Temple member (March 2006). See remembrance here.
- Archie Ijames, long-time
member of Peoples Temple from Indianapolis, assistant pastor (30 May 1993) (legacy.com).
- Norman Ijames, the son of Rosie and Archie Ijames, and one of the few Temple members with a pilot’s license, died in a plane crash in South America (1 November 1980) (legacy.com).
- Rosie Ijames, long-time
member of Peoples Temple from Indianapolis, wife of Archie (1 November 1982) (legacy.com).
- Richard Janaro,
who was on a Temple boat off the coast of Guyana at the time of the
deaths in Jonestown, died in early 2003 after a long illness. He was
83. He is survived by his wife, Claire, a Temple member who was in Georgetown
on November 18. The Janaros’ two children – Mauri Kay, 15, and Darren
Richard, 14 – died in Jonestown.
- Ruby Johnson, who survived the deaths in Jonestown because she was in Georgetown on November 18, died in the 1990s.
- Suzanne Jones, adopted daughter of Jim and Marceline Jones (November 2006)
- Ruth Ellen Kerns Reinhardt, a former member of Peoples Temple who became a nurse practitioner (January 2006).
- Paul McCann, who survived the deaths in Jonestown by being in Georgetown on November 18, died in July 2010. A remembrance by Michael
Touchette appears here.
- Wade and Mabel Medlock, two former members of Peoples Temple who filed both a civil suit and a criminal complaint against Jim Jones and other Temple leaders, alleging they had extorted the Medlocks’ property, died on March 1, 1983 and April 8, 2002, respectively.
- Al & Jeannie
Mills, aka Elmer & Deanna Mertle, two early defectors from Peoples
Temple, and founders of the Concerned Relatives and the Human Freedom
Center (2/28/80, Washington Post; also Monterey Peninsula Herald) were murdered in their home
in Berkeley, California in February 1980, along with their daughter
Daphene, 15. The crime was never solved.
- Tyrone Mitchell, Temple survivor (2/25/84, New York Times; also Ocala (FL) Star Banner)
- Edith Parks, Jonestown resident who left with Rep. Leo Ryan on November 18, 1978 (April 1, 1985 in Ukiah) (legacy.com).
- Robert Paul, who accompanied Leslie Wilson, Richard Clark, Diane Louie and the Evans family on their trek to Matthews Ridge on November 18, died in July 2010. An obituary in the Daily
Iberian appears here and a story of his life
- Joe Phillips, a prominent member of Peoples Temple during its Redwood Valley years, died in 2000.
- Wayne Pietila, a former member of Peoples Temple whose departure from the church as one of the Gang of Eight was considered the first major defection, died on December 15, 2011. Numerous remembrances appear here.
- Michael Prokes, spokesperson for Peoples Temple, by suicide (3/14/79). His statement to the press before his death is here.
- Shirley Purifoy defected from Peoples Temple with her husband Bill and 13 other relatives on New Years Day 1976 (Summer 2006).
- Aurora Rodriguez, who survived the deaths in Jonestown because she was in Georgetown on November 18 (April 28, 1996) (legacy.com).
- David Richard Shular, a former member of Peoples Temple (5/7/04) (See remembrances for David here and here)
- Ricky Stahl, a former member of Peoples Temple who was related to several people who died in Jonestown (June 1, 1987) (legacy.com).
- Bobby Stroud, Jonestown
survivor (2/23/05). (See remembrances here)
- Helen Swinney, Jonestown
resident who survived the tragedy by being on the Temple’s boat, the Cudjoe (October 17, 1999, in South Carolina) (legacy.com).
- Hyacinth Thrash, Temple survivor (11/22/95, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
- Charlie Touchette, who was one of Jonestown’s original settlers and who survived the tragedy by being on the Temple’s boat, the Cudjoe (March 30, 2007).
- Johnnie Mae Yates, aka Nedra Yates, Jonestown survivor (September 16, 2009, in Texas) (legacy.com). A remembrance by Laura Johnston Kohl appears here.
- Charlotte and Walter Baldwin, the parents of Marceline Jones who visited Jonestown in October 1978 less than a month before the tragedy, died in Richmond, Indiana, where they lived for most of their lives and where Marceline was born. Charlotte died 15 July 1992, and Walter died about six months later, 17 January 1993 (legacy.com).
- June M. Cordell died in Indianapolis, Indiana on August 26, 2010 at age 82 following a stroke earlier that month. She is survived by her husband Gene. More than a dozen of their relatives died in Jonestown. Their writings appear here.
- Louis Gurvich, the father of Jonestown resident Jann Gurvich, and a private investigator in New Orleans who considered hiring mercenaries in 1977 to kidnap his daughter and who flew down to Guyana two days after the deaths in Jonestown to conduct his own investigation, died on August 1, 1986.
- Nadyne Houston, mother of Bob Houston and grandmother of Judy and Patricia Houston, was a member of Concerned Relatives, and accompanied Leo Ryan to Guyana, even though she did not travel with the congressional party to Port Kaituma (August 11, 1993) (legacy.com).
- Laurence Layton, father of Debbie and Larry Layton, husband of Lisa Layton (March 3, 1999) (legacy.com).
- Fred Lewis, a San Francisco butcher who lost 27 relatives in Jonestown, died on May 13, 2003 after a long illness. His relatives in Jonestown included his wife, Doris, and seven children. His niece, Rev. Jynona Norwood, leads an annual memorial service at Evergreen Cemetery in Oakland.
- Barbara Moore,
the mother of Carolyn Layton and Annie Moore and grandmother of Kimo
Prokes (6/21/04) (See a remembrance here)
- Robert Moore, uncle of Carolyn Moore Layton and Ann Elizabeth Moore (January 2007). See remembrance here. An article he wrote for Ten Years After Jonestown, a collection of essays published by Edwin Mellen Press in 1989, appears here.
- Beverly and Howard Oliver, who were active with the Concerned Relatives organization in
an effort to remove her sons, Bruce and Bill, from Jonestown, have died.
Howard died 4 April 2001, and Beverly died four months later, 4 August 2001 (legacy.com).
- Ezra Schacht, the father of Jonestown’s doctor Larry Schacht, was killed in an automobile accident in Texas on June 18, 2010. He was 91. His obituary appears here. A remembrance appears here.
- Martin Tropp, brother of Richard and Harriet Sarah Tropp (December 29, 2006)
and California Government figures
- John Burke, U.S. Ambassador to Guyana (8/10/93, Washington Post)
- Joseph Freitas Jr., San Francisco District Attorney (4/19/06, San Francisco Chronicle)
- Richard Dwyer, U.S. Embassy official (8/31/91, Washington Post)
- Mervyn Dymally, California’s lieutenant governor under Jerry Brown and one of the state’s highest ranking supporters of Peoples Temple (10/7/2012)
- Harvey Milk, San Francisco Board of Supervisors (12/3/78, Washington Post)
- George Moscone, Mayor of San Francisco (12/1/78, Washington Post)
- Robert Ode, U.S. Embassy official in Guyana in months after November 1978 (9/11/95, New
- Cyrus Vance, U.S. Secretary of State during Jonestown body evacuation (1/14/2002, New York Times)
officials and figures
- Forbes Burnham, Guyana Prime Minister (8/7/85, Washington Post)
- Raymond Arthur Chung, who was Guyana’s first president, serving from March 1970 to October 1980 – a period that included Jonestown's entire history in that country – died on 23 June 2008. Information about his life may be found here.
- Desmond Hoyte, who served as Guyana’s Minister of Development in Forbes Burnham’s government during the life of Jonestown – and whom the Jonestown leadership considered as an antagonist to their cause – died on 22 December 2002. Information about his life and other tributes may be found here.
- Cheddi Jagan, head of Guyanese political opposition (3/7/97, Los Angeles Times)
- Sir Lionel Luckhoo, Guyana lawyer (12/22/97, London Daily Telegraph)
- Laurence E. Mann, Guyana’s ambassador to the U.S. Also known as "Bonny" Mann, the Ambassador killed his partner Paula Adams, their child, and then himself. (10/26/83, Washington Post)
- Leslie Mootoo, Guyana pathologist at Jonestown following deaths, 15 February 2000
(Guyana Chronicle, 2/28/2000)
- The Rev. Andrew Morrison, a priest who ran a Catholic newspaper in Georgetown and criticized Guyana's government for failing to do more to prevent the Jonestown massacre, on 26 January 2004 (Associated Press, 28 January 2004)
- Ptolemy Reid, Deputy Prime Minister of Guyana 2 September 2003 (Guyana Chronicle, 9/4/03)
- Walter Rodney, political activist in Guyana, was assassinated
in Guyana on December 13, 1980
- Vincent Teekah, Guyana’s Minister of Education who had close ties with Jim Jones and who certified the Jonestown school, was assassinated in Guyana in October 1979.
- Fred Wills, who was Guyana's Minister of Foreign Affairs – and an official whom Jim Jones considered a close friend of the Jonestown project – died in March 1992. An appreciation of his life may be found here.
- Michael Bellefountaine, a frequent contributor to the jonestown report and the author of A Lavender Look at Peoples Temple, a history of gays and lesbians in the Temple (May 10, 2007). An obituary for Michael appears here. Numerous remembrances appear here.
- Rev. Hamilton Boswell, pastor of Jones United Methodist Church in San Francisco’s Fillmore district who shared the critical views of most African American pastors of Jim Jones and Peoples Temple (May 6, 2007). His daughter’s obituary appears here.
- Carlton Goodlett, publisher of the San Francisco Sun-Reporter and Jim Jones' personal physician, died January 25, 1997. (legacy.com)
- Robert Fabian, Peoples Temple receiver following November 1978 (6/11/93, San Francisco Chronicle)
- Charles Garry, attorney
for Jim Jones and Peoples Temple (8/17/91, San Francisco Chronicle). A 1978 article from People Magazine about Garry's representation of the Temple appears here.
- Yvonne Golden, educator and principal at Opportunity High in San Francisco, which many Temple teenagers attended (12/5/06). An obituary from the San Francisco Chronicle appearshere.
- Chris Hatcher, the psychologist hired by the city of San Francisco to counsel Peoples Temple members affected by Jonestown, died in 1999.
- Joe Holsinger, aide to Rep. Leo Ryan (September 10, 2004). An obituary from the Sacramento Bee appears here. A portion of an audio recording of a press conference he held in May 1980 summarizing his views of what happened in Jonestown begins at 2:32 in Evidence of Revision.
- Richard Hongisto, the sheriff in San Francisco and political ally of Peoples Temple influence in the 1970s – best known for his efforts to prevent the evictions at the International Hotel in January 1977 – died on November 4, 2004.
- Rep. Tom Lantos, U.S. Congressman from Leo Ryan's district, first elected in 1980, sponsored several commemmorations of slain predecessor (February 11, 2008).
- Former Delaware State Senator W. Lee Littleton died in October 2011. Following the airlift of the Jonestown dead to Dover Air Force Base in his state, but before the unclaimed and unidentified remains were buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Oakland, Sen. Littleton offered to bury 30 to 40 of the “innocent” children in his backyard. That way, he said, he could watch their souls rise to heaven on Judgment Day.
- Joseph Mazor, a private detective whom members of the Concerned Relatives hired to try to persuade people to leave Jonestown (November 1985).
- Autumn Ryan, the mother of Leo Ryan, died on February 26, 1992.
- Margaret Singer, a clinical psychologist who became an expert witness on the subject of cults and brainwashing – and who worked as a self-described deprogrammer for a number of former Temple members, both before and after the deaths in Guyana – died in 2003.
- Laurence Stern, an editor for The Washington Post who co-authored Guyana Massacre with Charles Krause in 1978, died on August 11, 1979.
- Karen Stroup, a minister in the Disciples of Christ, a professor in religion and psychology, and a regular contributor to the jonestown report, died on January 21, 2012.
- Walter Thain, a physician who assisted Jonestown doctor Larry Schacht during a difficult delivery via a HAM radio hook-up – the success of which was heralded by the Temple as evidence of the Jonestown clinic’s abilities – and who later visited Jonestown, died in 1990.
- Rep. Clement Zablocki (D-Wisconsin), the chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee who conducted a hearing on May 15, 1979 into the assassination of Leo Ryan and the deaths in Jonestown (December 3, 1983).