Martha Jule Beck was a huge
woman with a huge appetite on
food, on sex - especially kinky sex
- and on murder!
In the late 1940's Martha and her
latino lover Fernandez Ray became
knows as the "Lonely-Hearts
Killers". They answered personal
adds and bilked elderly spinsters
and widows of their savings before
murdering them if they offered
When they were arrested Martha
and Ray confessed to 12 killings,
though it's believed the actual
number is closer to 20. At their trial
they kept cooing and holding hands.
The deadly lovers were sentenced
to death and went to their execution
in the Sing Sing electric chair.
The trial became a cause celebre
not so much on account of the
murders themselves, but because of
Martha's regular dispatches from
gaol to the press detailing her sexual
Martha feared the electric chair!
On March 8, 1951 at 11 p.m. a
parade of death began.
Martha was then 29 years old.
Her last meal was a dobble portion
of fried chicken, potatoes and a
salad. Martha was the last to take
the seat - the "fat lady singing".
First two young males was
electrocuted, then went Fernandez
at 11.12 p.m.
12 minutes later Martha was
brought into the dreaded room on
her own volition. The huge lady
had to be supported upon the
sight of the chair.
Her eyes were wide open showing
The wooden chair creaked and
moaned as her 280 pounds of
flabby flesh squirmed, twisted,
and finally settled between the
two fixed armrests of the chair
before the matrons could ajust the
straps. Her mouth formed the
words "so long!" but there were
no sound. Smiling, defiant to the
end, she had nothing more to say.
Martha rose against the straps as the
electricity was sent through her body:
2000 volts during 3 seconds and
500 volts during 57 seconds.
Martha was now supposed to be dead,
but instead she squirmed in the chair,
she was obviously alive and problably
After two more jolts she was
examined, but her body had not yet
given up. One more jolt was given -
the 5'th! Now she was finally dead.
Martha had been afraid of the electric
chair, and indeed this "fat lady's song"
was of embassasment and pain.
Before Martha was electrocuted, she
made a final statement for the press:
"What does it matter who is to blame?
My story is a love story, but only those
tortured with love can understand
what I mean. I was pictured as a fat
unfeeling woman...I am not unfeeling,
stupid or moronic...in the history of
the world how many crimes have been
attributed to love?"