by DJ Young

The morning of her suicide, Nonny Rice received a letter.


2 September  20--

 Andrew Emerson, Esq.

67 Salem Parkway

Salem, Oregon


 Dear Madam,

 It has come to the attention of my client, Mr. Christian R. Rice, your father, that you have expressed an interest (to various family members and others, here after to be mentioned as ‘family' or ‘others') to put a permanent end to your existence.  The purpose of this letter is to express the wishes and concerns (personal and legal) of my client in this matter.  To wit:

 By what means you will use to end your life (chemical, weapon, rope-like instrument, the use of a great height or other);

  1. Familial liability;
  2. What arrangements you have (or have not) made, i.e. post-decease
    1. The employment of ‘clean up' crew
    2. Funeral arrangements, including casket and plot purchase or, conversely
    3. Cremation arrangements (including purchase of urn, if desired)
    4. Disposal of remains

 Furthermore, my client wishes to know when this event will take place and what approximate time.   There are such details as whom to contact to advise of your passing, unless you will complete this activity pre-decease.  My client advises that this is to be greatly preferred.

 There is also the issue of remuneration for services utilized; my client wishes to be assured that no financial burden of any kind shall fall to him (or other members of your immediate family, i.e. your mother) as a result of any of your actions, nor should any personal liability be suggested against any family member (i.e.: blame for your death). Should such a burden be placed, you are advised that legal action may be taken against you. 

 My client desires an immediate response that can be remitted to my office by phone, fax or courier post.  I'm afraid we do not accept email at this time.  

 If we have not received a response by the 5th, we will assume you have declined to respond and gone forth with the aforementioned act.  My office will contact the local authorities, if my client so desires.  A copy of this letter will be held on file at the county clerk's office and will be made available to the public should my client consider this necessary.

 Best regards,

Andrew E. Emerson, Esq.


 Upon receipt to his office, the county clerk contacted Mr. Emerson personally, to express concern over the legitimacy of such a request and whether or not any actions had been taken to prevent the demise of the letter's subject.  The clerk also wished to receive permission to contact Miss Rice in case he could be of any assistance to her.  

 When Andrew Emerson, Esq told of this response to his client, Mr. Rice, Mr. Rice expressed indignation at the idea of a civil servant, paid with his own tax dollars, behaving in such a manner in order to give aid to one such as his child, the soon-to-be late Miss Rice.  He demanded that Emerson send a ‘cease and desist' order to the county clerk to prevent him from taking any action that would provide assistance to any of his family members, especially those of an ungrateful disposition who fail to provide for themselves and prefer to ‘live in the past' and create hardships for others.

 The cease and desist letter arrived the day after Miss Rice expired.  The clerk, knowing there to be no legal governance that would prevent him from providing assistance of any kind to an adult citizen of age, presented the letter to his own supervisor and a copy was placed with the original letter from Mr. Emerson, directed to Miss Rice, in a file filed under ‘Public requests.' 

 The clerk's clerk, Mrs. Dumble-Smith read both of these letters with what she later described to the Honorable Judge Georgia R. Mcreevey as ‘pure horror.'  She would go on to be fined for unauthorized access to a citizen file and put on paid administrative leave for three weeks until the investigation into her interference in the case was complete.  During this time she took her three grandchildren (Maisy, Alice and Douglas Dumble-Smith) to Disneyland in Anaheim, California, as they had never been before and Mrs. Dumble-Smith had not taken a holiday in over seven years.  Upon her return, she promptly gave notice and retired on half-pension.  Her version of events was given (in an unofficial capacity) in an interview that was published in the July 2013 edition of This Courting Life.

 In her memoir, the formerly Honorable Judge Georgia R Mcreevey would describe the case of the City of Salem vs. Annabella Dumble-Smith as one of the most absurd of her career, second only to the case of Mr. C. Nathan Rice vs. The City of Salem et al.

 Published in the city newspaper approximately one week after her demise, Miss Rice's suicide note read as follows:


Dear Everybody,

 I hate you all - especially you, daddy, you big fat asshole.

 If there's a hell, I hope God forgives you because I don't.


 Nonny Rice

 PS: Who the fuck names a kid NONNNY? 


In her book, The Season of Unreason, Karen Agnes Johnson, PhD (the consulting psychologist for the Rice vs. The City of Salem case, popularly known as the ‘Suicide Daddy Case') wrote extensively about the Rice family, noting:

 ‘In every family there is a breaking point, a confluence of coincidence that leads, ultimately, to a communal conflagration.  Nonesuch ‘Nonny' Rice was the child of a controlling sociopath and the end result of an inflated desire to full-fill his connubial duties within the conjugation of his marriage.  Finding that he had succeeded in this continuance, Mr. Rice, aware that his existence now involved the successful rearing of this only offspring (who, it turned out, would not be able to continue the patriarchal line as she was born female) began to take various steps to ensure ‘Nonnny' would conform to his convoluted and cancerous expectations which included, amongst other things, a nightly polish of his Italian leather footwear, the careful arrangement of his nail clippings by date, in a card catalog-type system and the removal of her clitoris at age 14.

 Really, I'm surprised she didn't kill herself sooner. Or killed him, even.  I think I would have.'