Monday, September 8, 2014

Walter F. Eberhardt -- Here's Looking at You

A veteran exploitation publicist who worked for a number of film studios (Famous Players-Lasky, First National), Everhardt joined Electrical Research Products , Inc. (part of Western Electric) in 1929 as director of publicity and advertising.  In recent years, the executive had turned to mystery writing, producing the novels Dagger in the Dark (1932), The Jig-Saw Puzzle Murder (1933), as well as two film novelizations.  For years Eberhardt had worn a glass eye, but shortly before his death feared that he was losing sight in the other.  On October 26, 1935, the 44-year-old publicist took his life in the garage adjoining his home at 46 Walbrooke Road in Scarsdale, New York.  Eberhardt's body was found slumped down in the front seat of his car with a rubber tube attached to the exhaust running up through the floor boards of the vehicle into his mouth.  Three notes were located on the floor next to the body.  In one, believed to be for his aunt, Eberhardt wrote:  "I am sorry.  I wanted to call you, but it was already too late.  My abiding love.  Walter."

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