View Full Version : MN MN - Spring Grove, WhtMale Skull UP8772, 20-35, In Basement Fire Pit of Home, Dec'05

12-25-2005, 12:12 AM
NamUs UP 8772
(Link added by Mod)

A workman made a gruesome discovery as he was cleaning a basement fire pit in a house - a human skull.

The skull was discovered Friday while Carlyn and Joycelyn Rostad were having masonry repairs done on their fireplace. The worker found the skull in the pit where fireplace ashes drop into the basement, Carlyn Rostad said.

A preliminary autopsy indicated the remains were from a white man who was at least 30 years old. Police said the bones are thought to have been at the site since before 1967.

A more complete autopsy will take at least two weeks, said Dr. Lindsey Thomas of the Minnesota Regional Coroner's Office in Hastings.
Carlyn Rostad said parts of the skull appeared to be missing, including the top of the forehead and some sections in the back and right temple.
Police officer Linda Coffield said the remains could not be linked to any cold cases.

The Rostads have used the fireplace only rarely in the 38 years they have lived in the home, and it wasn't opened up until 1977, Carlyn Rostad said. When they bought the home in 1967, the fireplace was closed off as a closet, he said.

Previous residents said the fireplace had been closed off when they lived there as well, he said.

12-26-2005, 04:59 PM
I suppose whoever turned the fireplace into a closet would be the most likely suspect.

I sure would like to know the story behind this one. How far back can they trace the ownership of the house and if it was owned by a single man or family or what.

12-26-2005, 05:05 PM
I wonder when the house was built. This could go back a long time.

01-29-2011, 10:16 PM
From Jan. 19, 2006


"Police have learned a doctor owned the house in the early 1900s.

Dr. Melvin Nelson also ran his practice in the home from 1915 to 1931, Carlyn Rostad said. The fireplace is in the room where the doctor did his examinations. It's possible he moved out and rented the property in the last few years he owned it.

Folz said the skull could be from a cadaver, a medical model or remains from a cremation.

Police also are seeking any original photographs of the doctor's office to see if he had a model skeleton that could match the skull.

"There's so many logical possibilities," Folz said. "We're going to try to investigate all of them."

Folz's 50-year-old brother, Mark, was last seen in Minneapolis about three years ago, so he understands the agony of having a missing loved one. He said police will continue to pursue every angle.

He said the department and medical staff also are working to obtain a DNA sample from the skull to send to the National Crime Information Center."