Robert E. Porth (ex-Kwajer, senior
engineer, Western Electric Co.) never admits to killing his wife, Mrs. Hilda
Porth. Robert received life sentence for first degree murder and his
sentencing began 03/03/1967 for life.
Mrs. Robert Porth's body was found down an embankment near the top of
Draper's Mountain in Pulaski, VA. She was a member of the
Winston-Salem Symphony Association and the Red Cross.
In memory of Kwaj, Mrs. Hilda Porth had a "Tiki Jo" room in her home
decorated with mementos from Kwajalein, Nike missile test site.
Robert, Hilda and their late-daughter Kathy lived on Kwajalein for a two-year
stay, around 1959.
Here are following paper article titles and some text posted relate to
Report that Mrs. Porth ate at Radford, VA is Doubted
- Mrs. Porth Poison Test
is Negative - The Virginia authorities reported that
all test for poisoning were negative leading them to conclude that she
must have died from the blow on her head and shock. The medical
examiner said Mrs. Porth had been dead 24 hours before her body was found
about 7:45 p.m. Aug. 14, 1965.
- The Porth Case:
Five Agencies Struggling with the Mystery
- Robert Porth to Plead
- Brother of Victim
Shocked at Charge
- The brother of Mrs. Porth said he "just can't believe" his
sister was killed by her husband.
- Mrs. Porth Liked Night
Driving - What
kind of woman would leaver her home at 9:30 p.m. to drive alone for
hundreds of miles? What kind of woman would pick up a hitch-hiker
(One theory is that Mrs. Robert Edward Porth was killed by a hitch-hiker.)
She was driving a 1956 Chrysler Imperial to Illnois to visit friends and
to Milwaukee, Wis., to attend a wedding.
- Victim's Brother May
Come - If
he comes, it will be "to bring out the truth"
- Prot Enters Innocent
Plea: His Trial May Be in October
- Robert Porth may be tried this month for the murder of his
- Robert E. Porth Charged
with murder of His Wife
- Car is Found in West
- Son Says Porth Innocent
- Porth's Attorney,
Sheriff Prepare Cases for Court
- September 8. 1965
- Porth Trail Here
- The man who will shape the state's first-degree murder case
against Robert E, Porth, being charged with murdering his wife on or
about Aug. 13, 1965, said he felt defendant could get a fair trail in
- Porth Pass Time
- Porth asked friends for a paint-by-number set so he would "not sleep
by day and stay awake all night."
- Porth is Indicted
in Death of Wife
- Forsyth County grand jury decides that Robert E. Porth should
be tried for the first-degree murder of his wife.
- Porth Trial is Put
Additional time needed to prepare the defense of Robert Porth.
- Evidence Lacking in
Death - Autopsy
report showed that the cause of death was a combination of a blow at the
base of her skull and shock.
- Mrs. Johnson says
Porth called Death an Accident
- Mrs. Nancy Johnson, of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., witness against
Robert Porth told her his wife's death was an accident. "I was in
Fort Lauderdale the day it happened," Mrs. Johnson told Whitman yesterday,
"but I think it was an accident. Bob said it was an accident, and I
believe him." Mrs. Johnson was brought up in Winston-Salem, was
married and had four children, and divorced in 1959. Her husband
remarried and the children lived with him. Mrs. Johnson lived in
Fort Lauderdale for the past six months. Porth told investigating
officers something about the case and they charged him with murder.
To that, publicly and privately, Porth has had only two words, "Not
- 4 More Are Seated on
Porth Case Jury; 3 to be Picked Today
- A First for Two Lawyers
- Final Juror Seated for
Trial of Porth
- 15 Witnesses Called on
- Courtroom Overflows on
3rd Day - February
- Porth Knew of Death
Scene, Says Witness; Several Praise Him
- Woman's Fatal Route
- Officers Will Tell of
- Porth contends that his wife died after a
fall down the stairs into a brick planter of the home they were building.
Color slides of body were shown to jury. Sheriff's deputies deal
with growing crowds at the courthouse.
- Porth Good Neighbor
- Porth of 'Nancy Type' is
Read - A
letter was written the night before Hilda underwent an operation which she
and the family expected to prove fatal. Mrs. Porth knew about his
"relationship" with Mrs. Nancy Johnson written in her last letter to her
husband, "Do not misled by the Nancy type, please my dear, since then i
could not rest in my grave, Promise my memory that."
- Defendant's Son Takes
- Porth Said Wife Fell
- Physician says Mrs.
Porth Died of Multiple injuries from 'a Blunt instrument'
- Jury Says Verdict Was
Made With care, Prayer
- Porth Is Found Guilty of
- After five and one-half hours of deliberation. Later
sentenced to Central Prison "for the term of his natural life".
Other Articles Related to the case
- Mrs. Porth Was
Pleased by Kwajalein Experiences
- State to Reveal
Long-Guarded Porth Evidence
Spraying for Insects
I remember more than once
during my stay on Kwajalein in 1956-1957 when I was 8 and 9 years old, the
Navy sent a truck around the neighborhood spraying for insects. I
remember the clouds of insecticide, and we kids running around and playing
in it like fog...no doubt in my mind it was DDT in those days! I don't
remember seeing many bugs there, that's for sure. Steve
Jameson, Kwaj Kid 1956-1957
Atomic Bomb Blast
Then there was the day in 1956 my teacher in 4th grade at George Seitz
Elementary School said "Good morning children! Today we are all going
outside and watch the Atomic Bomb blast" (atomic testing was being done at
Bikini and Eniwetok in 1956). Sure enough, at the scheduled time, the
classrooms emptied out, and we all stood in line and looked toward the
proper direction....but awhile later. Teacher said, "Never mind. It has been
canceled for today." I swear this actually happened.
Jameson, Kwaj Kid 1956-1957