Friday, November 8, 2013
Jack Thompson -- The East River "Floater"
Hobbled by a career-ending injury to a tendon in his right leg, the popular 32-year-old musical comedy and vaudeville dancer in shows like Peggy Ann and A Connecticut Yankee announced his decision to kill himself at a party in his Manhattan Towers apartment on the night of November 3, 1931. No one took the threat seriously and Thompson was permitted to leave the apartment. The dancer remained missing until December 5, 1931 when a badly decomposed body was fished out of the East River. A former roommate recognized the expensive imported shoes on the corpse's feet as those of the dancer. Ironically, the "floater" was not positively identified until the surgeon who performed the unsuccessful surgery on Thompson's tendon confirmed the position of the scar on the body's right leg.