Story complied by, Norman L. Newton
Recently a walking tour was done of Fairview Cemetery in Gainesville, Texas, put on by North Central
Texas College professor, Ron Melugin. The focus was on people buried who had unusual deaths and
heard many interesting stories which he has included in a book he recently published, “Heroes, Scoundrels
and Angels-Fairview Cemetery of Gainesville, Texas.”
At one particular location this writer had noticed a family marker with the name of BUSBY. This
immediately brought to my mind a story that I had read in the Gainesville Daily Register more than 40 years
prior. Imagine to my surprise when I saw a marker with the exact name of my recollection, Paddy Busby. I
shared with the group of 25-30 people what I recalled about this particular grave.
Since that time a visit to the Cooke County Public Library reviewing micro-film of the Gainesville Daily
Register during 1968 would prove successful. I desired this record so that I could give a more accurate
account which I have done my best to duplicate here.
START Gainesville Daily Register Publication: 12/04/1968
…. to 7-year-old love one
ENIGMA AT FAIRVIEW
Police Stand by While
Mystery Grave Opened
By RICHARD HARP
Register Staff Writer
The ring of metal against metal disturbed the quietness of Fairview Cemetery. Once again a shovel was
pushed into the fresh dirt of a small grave and struck something solid. More dirt was removed and a
footlocker exposed to the view of Gainesville Policemen and cemetery workers.
They were filled with apprehension as the steel locker was gently raised from the shallow grave and
preparations made to open it. Each man present steeled himself for this dreadful moment.
The new grave was not without identification. A beautifully carved granite marker stood as a silent sentry
over the tiny plot.
It read: “Paddy Busby.”
Its second line declared: “Mommie and Daddy Loved You.”
Why desecrate such a tender and beloved place?
Cemetery workers were first puzzled and later worried when they discovered the new grave Monday
morning. They had no knowledge of a burial in the plot. They became mystified when the sexton’s records
disclosed no information that could explain the grave and marker.
Gainesville Police were notified and the fear of possible foul play entered into the grim puzzle.
The ownership of the lot was determined, with the owners residing in San Antonio. Local relatives were of
no help in unraveling the enigma.
It was determined that two provision of the Cemetery Ordinance had been violated.
1. A death certificate had not been presented to the sexton.
2. Cemetery personnel had not supervised digging the grave.
Armed with this knowledge, police and cemetery workers proceeded to open the grave. Regardless of
the outcome, its contents had to be known.
Back at Fairview, the moment of truth was at hand. Tension mounted as the footlocker’s clasps were
released and the lid slowly raised.
All eyes focused on the small body. It was embalmed and carefully nestled between two soft blankets. It
was clothed in a sweater and booties.
As one, the shocked men turned their eyes back to the granite marker and stared at the inscription:
Paddy Busby was a small brown Dachshund……..sleeping peacefully in dog heaven.
Unsolved is the time and date of interment. Cemetery officials believe Thanksgiving Day or some recent
evening after 5 p.m.
Paddy was returned to his resting place, but not for long. His owners have been notified – gently, but
firmly – to re-enter him elsewhere – and soon.
Fairview Cemetery is reserved for mortal remains, not animals – even loved ones – city officials point out.
When Paddy Busby was interred there were already two Busby family members buried but neither of them
was recorded in the Fairview Cemetery Book published in 1985 by the Cross Timbers Genealogical
Society. The book does include on page 30 a listing for Paddy Busby…………….1961 to 1968. The
family members that were buried in the family plot prior to Paddy were Rufus Hardy Busby Sr. in 1944 in an
unmarked grave despite being a military veteran of WWI and a recipient of the Purple Heart. The other
person was, Ora Busby, (wife of Rufus) who died in 1965 and she does have a grave marker.
The grave marker of Paddy Busby actually says “YOUR MOMMIE & PAPA LOVE YOU” and not as stated
in the newspaper article.
Today the family circle is complete for Paddy since both MOMMIE & PAPA are now with him. PAPA, who
is Rufus Hardy Busby Jr. died on 12/15/1983 and MOMMIE, who is Clifftina Busby died on 5/5/2004. They
both have grave markers. Very appropriate that on the grave marker of Clifftina is written this inscription,
“AT REST WITH THOSE SHE LOVED.”
A person can Google the name Paddy Busby and will find that he is listed on the website, “Find A Grave”.
There is no indication he is an animal.
A story has been written in The Weekly News of Cooke County newspaper (page 2) about this cemetery
walk with a short mention of several stories that were told that day. I have it linked here.
The Weekly News of Cooke County, November 7, 2012
. Paddy Busby might not be a mortal but it is apparent he was indeed BELOVED by his MOMMIE &
I hope you enjoyed this story. Norman L. Newton
Reference Sources used to compile this story
Gainesville Daily Register, 306 E. California St., Gainesville, TX 76240 http://www.gainesvilleregister.com
Photo of Paddy Busby grave marker: By Norman L. Newton, November, 2012
Rufus Hardy Busby Sr., born July 10, 1889, Corsicanna, TX. and died March 27, 1944, in a Veteran’s hospital in
Dallas. He had served more than two years overseas during World War 1, and received the Purple Heart award.
According to his Death Certificate he showed his occupation as farmer but unable to work. His parents are Steven
B. Busby & Sarah Curtis Busby. He had lived in Gainesville over 6 years at the time of his death.
Ora Edith Sanders Busby, born in 1904, Texas and died 1965 in San Antonio, Texas Her parents are listed as
Amos Sanders & Louise Autry Sanders on her Death Certificate.
Rufus Hardy Busby Jr., born in 1924 and died in 1983 in San Antonio, Texas. He was a military veteran of World
Clifftina Johnson Busby was born 1926 and died in 2004 in San Antonio, Texas
Added to the website: UNDER THE SHADE TREE http://www.valleyview1872.com
Fairview Cemetery, Gainesville, Cooke County, Texas Compiled by Cross Timbers Genealogical Society
Find A Grave
Family Tree Maker
The Weekly News of Cooke County http://www.theweeklynewscc.com
Family Search (Death Certificates)