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On Sunday, Oct. 5, 1986 — just 15 days before her 25th birthday — Denease (Monson) Latham of What Cheer, Iowa, suffered blunt force trauma injuries to her head before allegedly drowning in two inches of water beneath a bridge about a half mile north of Rose Hill in Mahaska County.
One of Latham’s young sons remembers the fight between his mother and father the last night he ever saw his mom alive. She’d taken off on her bicycle, he said.
His mother was found a few miles from their home, and the three young boys were told she’d run her bicycle into a guard rail on the bridge.
“But there was no blood on the guard rail, and the chain was missing off her bike,” Lorrie Murphy told Iowa Cold Cases.
Murphy’s daughter is soon to be married to one of Latham’s sons.
[Further details are pending.]
Denease Monson was born October 20, 1961 to Wendell Leon and Verla Rae (Rose) Monson. She died Oct. 5, 1986.
Survivors included her husband, Robin Latham; three sons, Jeremy, Joshua and Jason Latham; her parents; five sisters, Debra Rae Monson Maddox, Donna Lee Monson Booth, Diana Lynn Monson Grover, Dalena Monson Wareing, Deana Marie Monson Burnett; a brother, Darin Leon Monson; and many other loving family members.
She was laid to rest in the Confidence Cemetery in Confidence, Iowa, in Wayne County.
Denease’s father passed away in August 2002 and her mother in March 2006 without ever seeing justice served in their daughter’s death.
If you have any information about Denease Latham’s death please contact Mahaska County Sheriff Paul DeGeest at (641) 673-4322.