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Deborah Irving is the widow of George Irving, the daughter-in-law of Irvin Irving, and the mother of Chad Irving. Deborah and her husband were "empty nesters" since their son had gone away to college.

On 2 October 2011 her husband left the house after dinner and did not return. When she awoke the next morning and found that he had not returned home, she called his office and found that he was not there. A short time later she received the call from her father-in-law and learned that her husband had died after falling from the balcony of room #79 of the Chateau Marmont Hotel on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood. Later that day she was interviewed by detectives Harry Bosch and David Chu. Her father-in-law was there and had coached her on what to say or not say. She told the detectives about her husband going out the night before. She said he had been doing that more often recently, and she suspected that he was meeting someone. However, she had not confronted him about this. Other than her husband's late night activities, she was aware of no other outstanding issues. She neglected to tell the detectives that she was planning to divorce her husband and that they had spent their honeymoon in room #79 of the hotel.

Later Bosch interviewed her again, and this time she revealed that she was planning to leave her husband. She had told him about a week before. She had been unhappy for some time but had waited until their son went away to college. She was planning to move up to San Francisco to be near her son.

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