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Wed Jul 10, 2024, 07:16 AM Jul 10

On this day, July 10, 1928, investigative reporter Don Bolles was born.

Don Bolles

Bust of Bolles in an exhibit dedicated to him at the Clarendon Hotel

Born: Donald Fifield Bolles; July 10, 1928; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.
Died: June 13, 1976 (aged 47); Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.

Donald Fifield Bolles (July 10, 1928 – June 13, 1976) was an American investigative reporter for The Arizona Republic newspaper who was known for his coverage of organized crime in and around Phoenix, Arizona, especially by the Chicago Outfit. His murder in a car bombing was suspected to be mob-related but was later found to be connected to his reporting on real estate fraud by local contractors.


Don Bolles was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on July 10, 1928. At a young age he moved to New Jersey, where his father was chief of the state's Associated Press (AP) bureau; his paternal grandfather, Stephen Bolles, had also been in the newspaper business. Don was also the brother of clergyman and author Richard Nelson Bolles and the first cousin of humanist theoretician Edmund Blair Bolles.

Bolles graduated Teaneck High School in 1946, then obtained a degree in government from Beloit College, where he was editor of the campus newspaper and received a President's Award for personal achievement. After serving in the Korean War, Bolles joined the AP as a sports editor and rewriter in New Jersey, New York and Kentucky.

In 1962, Bolles was hired by The Arizona Republic newspaper in Phoenix, Arizona, published at the time by Eugene C. Pulliam, where he quickly found a spot on the investigative beat and gained a reputation for dogged reporting of influence peddling, bribery and real estate fraud. Former colleagues say he seemed to grow disillusioned about his job in late 1975 and early 1976, and that he had requested to be taken off the investigative beat, moving to coverage of Phoenix City Hall and then the state legislature.

Bolles was married twice and had a total of seven children.


The Hotel Clarendon (now Clarendon Hotel) located at 401 W. Clarendon Dr.

Parking space in the south parking area on 4th Avenue of the Hotel Clarendon where Bolles was murdered. The parking space is now a covered parking lot.

The 1976 Datsun 710 in which Bolles was fatally injured

On June 2, 1976, Bolles left a short note in his office typewriter explaining he would meet with an informant, John Adamson, then go to a luncheon meeting at the Hotel Clarendon (now the Clarendon Hotel) and would return by 1:30 p.m. Adamson had promised to divulge information on a land deal involving top state politicians and possibly the Mafia. Bolles spent several minutes waiting in the lobby of the hotel before being summoned by a call to the front desk, where the conversation with Adamson lasted no more than two minutes. Bolles then exited the hotel, having parked his car, a 1976 Datsun 710, in an adjacent lot on Fourth Avenue.

Just as Bolles was driving out of his parking space, a remote-controlled bomb consisting of six sticks of dynamite, taped to the underside of the car beneath the driver's seat, was detonated. The explosion shattered Bolles' lower body, opened the driver's door and left him laying half outside the vehicle, mortally wounded. Bolles was treated at St. Joseph's Hospital over the next ten days, during which one of his arms and both of his legs were amputated; he succumbed to his injuries on the eleventh day, June 13, at age 47.

Bolles' remains were interred in a crypt located in the Serenity Mausoleum of the Greenwood/Memory Lawn Mortuary & Cemetery in Phoenix.

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On this day, July 10, 1928, investigative reporter Don Bolles was born. (Original Post) mahatmakanejeeves Jul 10 OP
That was so sad,,,, and so long ago now,,,, KarenS Jul 10 #1
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