Eketahuna was rocked in 1932 when a young man was arrested and charged with the shooting double murder of his parents.
John and Ellen Corrigan lived in a farmhouse in the Pahiatua-Eketahuna district in the small rural settlement of Mangamahoe, east of the Tararua Range. They farmed sheep.
Early in the morning of Easter Sunday, March 28, 1931, one of their sons Lewis was woken by gunshots and his 23-year-old brother John coming into his bedroom and saying he had shot their parents.
Lewis found both his parents in their bedroom shot at close range with a shotgun and leaving his 16-year-old sister Agnes in charge, ran for the neighbours, 1.6km away.
Meanwhile, John calmly lit the fire and made a cup of tea. And waited.
Agnes waited nervously too. She was scared of her brother.
Corrigan was odd. Odd enough that 18 months before their deaths, a local doctor had wanted him declared insane and committed to a hospital. Tragically, his parents were opposed to it and instead put away razors and firearms to stop him getting them.
He had injured himself a few years before and had not worked since.
Corrigan thought people might be going to poison him. Spitting out anything someone else prepared, and when he did eat, he prepared his own food.
That he had managed to get hold of the gun was obvious, he had gone hunting with it two weeks before.
John Berney, a neighbour, arrived at the scene of the tragedy to find John did not seem at all upset.
He was taken before a magistrate and ordered to the Supreme Court to determine if he could stand trial.
Dr Henry Thomas Dawson, who had already wanted Corrigan committed, told the trial he considered him to be insane and a danger to others.
Corrigan had told him he believed his parents were trying to harm him.
One of his preoccupations was that he would be poisoned. At one point all he was consuming was milk in various states of decay.
It took a jury nine minutes to decide he was insane and could not stand trial for the double murder.
The judge ordered him to be detained in the Porirua mental hospital.
It was not however the last time Corrigan would be in the headlines. He spent time at the Porirua hospital - when he was not escaping. He was moved to other institutions - the notorious Seacliffe and Oakley in Auckland - where he escaped three more times.
In 1943 when he escaped from Seacliffe he lived wild for months before being caught..
He died in 1987.
His parents, John and Ellen, are buried in the Archer St cemetery in Masterton in a grave with a plain headstone, the only epitaph on it, RIP.
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