Date: 26 Aug 1961
Place: Southport, Merseyside
Abraham Ellison was found face downwards in the sea 300 yards offshore near Southport pier on 26 August 1961.
He was last seen on 10 August 1961 by his sister who he lived with. She said that he asked her for 2s 6d for a drink and then went out and that that was the last she ever saw of him. She said, 'I was not over-worried because sometimes he did not return home for days'.
A police constable said that he had gone out in an amphibious craft and that lifeguards had dived overboard and secured lines round his body.
He said that later pieces of crumpled water-sodden paper were found in his pocket. He said, 'We dried these and with great difficulty pieced them together. They were betting slips with the non-de-plume 'Windows' on them'.
It was later determined that the betting slips had been given to Abraham Ellison by a woman friend of his that had lived in Marion Street, Birkenhead. She said, 'I had known Mr Ellison for four years and had been a close friend. We had played bowls together. On August 9 I gave him three betting slips'.
She said that the following day Abraham Ellison arranged to meet her in a local park but said that as he didn't show up by 5pm that she left and went home.
She went on to say, 'On August 28 his sister showed me the newspaper article and the following day we went to the police station at Southport'.
His sister said that after reading the Echo newspaper at home one night after Abraham Ellison had been missing that she noted the details about the body of a man that had been found and him having been wearing a nine-carat gold signet ring with the letters 'GB' engraved on it. At the inquest she said, 'I gave him that ring nine years ago. As soon as I read the article I went to Southport police headquarters'.
A consultant pathologist said that Abraham Ellison's cause of death was probably due to drowning.
Abraham Ellison had been a gardener and had lived in Waler Place, Higher Tranmere, Birkenhead.
At the inquest, the Coroner said, 'I am satisfied that the body is Ellison, though there is no evidence to show how he came to be in the sea. The cause of death is unascertainable but is probably due to drowning'.
The Coroner also congratulated the police constable, saying, 'This is a clear illustration of the value of preserving all material'.
An open verdict was returned.
see Liverpool Echo - Thursday 31 August 1961