Joyce Hanson Newberry had finally met and married the man of her dreams. But her ex-husband was the nightmare that wouldn't go away.
Joyce Newberry, 55, and her new husband, Mike Newberry, 40, arrived home Saturday brimming with the news that they had eloped to Middlesboro, Ky., the day before and were wed in a minister's home.Newberry "was the first man she'd ever been with that we were ever happy about. It was the happiest we had seen her in awhile," son-in-law Tony Lineberger said Monday.
"My mother-in-law was a weak person," Lineberger said. "I loved her to death, but she had been with abusing men all of her life."
Everett "E.C." Cobb was one of them. And at about 4 a.m. Sunday, he caught up with his ex-wife.
Cobb, 52, cut the phone line to the Newberrys' mobile home and threw a road flare through a bedroom window. As Joyce Newberry ran out the front door with her husband and her best friend, June Everhart, 49, Cobb fired with a 12-gauge shotgun.
Mike Newberry was hit point-blank in the head. The women were shot in the back. All three were killed.
Cobb then walked about 600 feet away into the tall grassy field where he apparently had been spying on the home. He put a small handgun to his head and killed himself.
Cobb, a former deputy with the Hamblen County Sheriff's Department, was a quiet man with a volatile temper who had been depressed for weeks about his ex-wife's relationship with Newberry, Hamblen Sheriff Charles Long said Monday.
"He was a very jealous-type person. He couldn't take rejection," Long said.
Joyce Newberry had taken out a protective order against Cobb that recently expired. She got it after her former house in neighboring Green County burned to the ground last Memorial Day - two days after Cobb threatened to burn it. No one was hurt, and no one was caught.
She moved into the mobile home soon afterward.
Her landlady, Sarah Rose, said, "It was pretty horrifying coming down and seeing the bodies laying in the yard. I guess it is bad to say, but there was some satisfaction in finding his body."