Robert C. Marshall, 27, milk deliveryman, rescued Calvin L. Perry, 46, grocery store proprietor, and Thelma E. Perry, 43, from a homicidal assault, Dorseyville, Pennsylvania, December 22, 1953. Perry and his wife were in their grocery store when a man armed with a concealed revolver entered. The man selected a large order of groceries which he carried to a counter. As Perry rang up the cost of the order on a cash register, the man drew his gun, pointed it at Perry, and threatened him. Perry handed all of the paper money in the cash register to the man, who then demanded a box for the groceries. Perry obtained a box, the gunman following him with the revolver placed against Perry’s back. As Perry lifted the box onto the counter, his wife saw the gun and began to scream. She removed Perry’s revolver from a drawer, ran to the front door, and saw Marshall approaching the store. Without realizing that the gun was unloaded, she briefly stepped outside and handed it to Marshall. As Mrs. Perry reentered, the man pointed his gun toward her. Perry began grappling with the man and seized the gun, thrusting its barrel downward. Marshall saw that Perry’s revolver contained no cartridges but decided to use it as a bluff and opened the door. As Marshall advanced to within 12 feet of the man, a shot was fired which wounded Perry in the hand. Glancing off an ice cream freezer and thence upward from the floor near Marshall, the bullet struck Mrs. Perry in the leg. Perry continued to struggle with the gunman. The latter at the command of Marshall, who pointed the unloaded revolver at him, dropped the gun. Perry quickly picked up the gun and forced an unarmed accomplice waiting outside into the store. Soon afterward the gunman and his accomplice were taken into custody by police. Perry and Mrs. Perry were hospitalized for treatment of their wounds. Marshall was nervous.
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Longtime Fox Chapel, Pa., Police Chief Robert C. Marshall devoted his life to protecting people in his community and teaching the officers under him patience and understanding. Marshall was a 30-year veteran of the force and served 22 years as chief.
Robert Clair Marshall died on Feb. 18, 2006. He was 79.
The son of Robert T. and Ella Gunia Marshall, he attended Etna High School in Etna, Pa., and at the age of 17 joined the Navy. He served on the USS Clermont during World War II and the USS Gilbert Islands during the Korean War.
In 1953, when he was a milk deliveryman, Marshall used his wits and military skills to stop an armed robbery and saved the lives of grocery store owner Calvin L. Perry and his wife, Thelma E. Perry. For his heroism, Marshall received a Carnegie Medal from the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission.
Marshall joined the Fox Chapel poliice force in 1962 and became chief in 1971. He retired in 1992 and spent much of his retirement playing golf.
(Edited from an obituary in the Tribune-Review, Feb. 21, 2006.)