Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Bones


Bones
Between Interstate 20 and north frontage road at the Ft. Stockton exit
Ector county, Texas


I figured it was possible that one day I'd run across something like this, with all the stomping around I do. But still, I didn't want to believe it was a human hand. It's hard, though, to come up with what else it might be, except an ape hand and that's even more unlikely.

On Sunday, Donna and I were out taking photos in a wide median off Interstate 20 just near the Fort Stockton exit, taking photos of the very dramatic soaptree yuccas that were in bloom there. When I came across this, it stopped in my tracks. I stood there for a while, in disbelief, but touched nothing. I called for Donna to come see. She had the same thought as I did, and also touched nothing.

When we got home, Donna called the Ector County Sheriff's office. She told them straight out that we found a human hand. They asked where and then connected her to the Ward County Sheriff's department. That sheriff went right out there. Once there, he called Donna to get directions to where the bones were exactly. On the phone to her, he found them. And he thought they were human, too. But it turns out that while that location is closer to the Ward County Sheriff's office, it is not in Ward County, it is in Ector. He said he was calling the Ector County Sheriff's office. Being the impatient (and nosey) types that we are, Donna called her daughter who is friends with a deputy in this county. He went out there and bagged up the bones. He, too, thought they were human. They have now been sent to a forensic lab.

Below is a closer photo of the bones. They are just a little smaller than my medium-sized female hand. There is a bit of desiccated flesh on it still -- the brown stuff -- although so dry it's hard to tell much more than that about it. I know nothing about how old it will turn out to be -- myself, I'm figuring it's a year old at least, possibly older. If it is a human hand, I'm hoping there is still DNA in that flesh. There were three other long bones (two of which you can see above) in that same area. Donna and I scouted around quite a bit there, but found nothing more. It's possible the hand could have come from anywhere, dragged there by an animal.

It's hard to say how I feel about finding this. It's exciting in a way -- I feel like Miss Marple. But, instantly I also think about the tragedy it might represent and it is much more sobering then.

13 comments:

The Gossamer Woman said...

Oh, how spooky and dumbfounding. It doesn't sound like archeology, so that makes it a crime possibly. Can you sleep with this thought in your head? Considering you really do live in the Wild West, anything is possible. I know you'll keep us updated.

jomamma said...

When we were kids growing up out there my dad and his co-workers would find bones and even partial bodies. Most were Wetbacks who had gotten lost making their way from the border.

Bobbie said...

If they are human I do hope that your find solves a case. I remember when I lived in Odessa, some 25+ years ago now, there were a lot of missing women. I'll be thinking about this and hope to learn more soon.

jomamma said...

Yes Bobbie, a lot of hitchhikers too.

Godinla said...

Creepy and cool. I know how you feel. You have to find out and let all of us know.

Frances said...

horrible. But, as you say, you may have helped solve some old mystery and someone may get closure.
I often wonder how people who come across bodies feel. Here in UK it is often children playing in the woods who find such things. We are all waiting to know what those bones were - or who.

-K- said...

Yes, that would certainly be both exciting and sad. I wonder if this will ever be solved.

Countess Von Blogula said...

Bobbie: Oh, I know about the Johnny Meadows serial killer in Odessa from the late 60's and early 70's. Unfortunately, this looks too recent to be from that era.

jomamma said...

Countess, I remember that, I think I was maybe in the second grade... seems like his kids went to the same school as me and my brother. I was too young to know the full extent of how scared people were, but not to young to realize it was a big deal, everyone was on edge about it.

Countess Von Blogula said...

Jomamma, are you the same Jomamma who knows the famous GodinLA? There can't be too many of you!

I was a senior at Permian when the Odessa American was covering that case. That was back in the day when the local papers weren't in Rupert Murdoch's harem, and actually did some investigation. There's a lot to this story, including some shady local officials.

Okay, I'm waiting to see what Debi finds out from these bones.

jomamma said...

Yes Countess I'm the same Jomamma. Odessa has always had it's shady officials and law keepers.

Anonymous said...

i.have.to.hand.it.to.you

j.ohn

Maya said...

Yikes! Now, THAT is creepy!