Deaths of Springfield men ruled a suicide pact
The bodies of Tom Pursell, 19, and Lester Snide, 23, were discovered by a juvenile on a hike in the area on April 19, 2012. Police found a rifle and two suicide notes at the scene and soon after said all indications were that Snide shot and killed Pursell, and then shot himself.
Evidence at the scene suggested the men had been deceased in the shed since mid- to late-December of 2011.
“Lester Snide and Clifford Pursell were friends at the time of their deaths. Both had struggled with thoughts of suicide in the past,” according to the final report.
“Snide was having difficulties while on parole and had stated many times that he would kill himself before he ever went back to prison. Pursell had recently learned discouraging news about life plans and was taking it hard.”
Officials quoted from the suicide notes found at the scene. Pursell wrote, “Lester didn’t murder me. I asked him to do it,” while Snide’s note was titled, “This is my final goodbye.”