Othello local separates murderer from myth in Deodies lecture

Print Article

Courtesy photo Deodas Curry’s mug shot at the Washington Correctional Center in 1975.

OTHELLO — Othello-native Alfonso Zavala, recent museum studies graduate from Central Washington University, presented the story of local legend Deodies Curry at a special lecture Saturday at the Othello Community Museum.

Zavala's research worked to separate fact from the fiction surrounding Curry, who holds an contradictory place of virtue and vice in the annals of Othello's history.

Curry was a well-known figure in the small town of Othello, famous for his generous treatment of area children and leadership in the burgeoning African-American community, and infamous for tales of prostitution, drugs and murder. Some legends describe Curry as having fed his victims to his pigs, while others allege the numerous bodies found floating in the Potholes Reservoir over the years had befallen Curry's wrath.

The boogeyman mythos is possibly overblown, said Zavala in his presentation, and the only time Curry was ever charged for murder made The Old Hotel a local legend.

In 1974, Curry found his wife in bed with another man inside what was then known as the Othello Hotel, and Curry shot the man. Even this account comes with an asterisk, as Curry claimed in court that the other man had actually taken the first shot, but Curry was eventually charged with second-degree murder.

The Othello Hotel was abandoned for a short period before it was restored, repaired and opened as The Old Hotel Art Gallery on Halloween, 1975.

Zavala conducted over 24 interviews during his research, with sources ranging from ex-mayors to ex-sheriffs. Zavala said he appreciated the chance to simultaneously stretch himself in his museum studies and also dive into a legend from the place he grew up.

“It was a chance to give back something to Othello,” Zavala said.

Print Article

Read More Entertainment

Public invited to Othello Community Health Fair

August 09, 2018 at 11:04 am | Columbia Basin Herald OTHELLO National Health Center Week has been celebrated for more than 30 years for its success in providing access to affordable, high-quality, cost-effective health care to medically vulnerable ...

Comments

Read More

Othello local separates murderer from myth in Deodies lecture

August 08, 2018 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald OTHELLO — Othello-native Alfonso Zavala, recent museum studies graduate from Central Washington University, presented the story of local legend Deodies Curry at a special lecture Saturday at th...

Comments

Read More

Classic rodeo fun at Omak Stampede

August 05, 2018 at 5:00 am | Columbia Basin Herald OMAK — Ridin' and ropin' for four nights of rodeo, the world-famous Suicide Race across the Okanogan River, the annual Western and Native Art Show, the Colville Confederated Tribes Indian Encam...

Comments

Read More

Columbia Theatre Camp offers program for kids, teens

August 02, 2018 at 5:00 am | The Royal Register ROYAL CITY Children and teenagers ages 8-18 interested in breaking into theatre and stretching themselves artistically can sign up for the first-ever Columbia Theatre Camp, where attendees can pr...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

509-770-1227
705 E. Hemlock (downstairs)
Othello, WA 99344

©2018 Sun Tribune Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X