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View Full Version : MI MI - Little Lake Harbor, WhtMale 94UMMI, 23-30, Scoliosis-Rod in Left Femur, Oct'87


hoppyfrog
01-15-2006, 11:46 PM
The Doe Network:
Case File 94UMMI

http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/94ummi.html

Unidentified White Male Located on October 24, 1987, 0.2 miles south of Lake Superior and 1.2 miles WSW of Little Lake Harbor near the Blue hiking trail. In Chippewa county, Whitefish Township, Michigan.
Cause of death: No evidence was noted on the remains that indicated cause or manner of death.
<LI>The victim has been deceased since January 1987 to September 1987.



Vital Statistics


Estimated age: 23 - 30 years old (born between 1957 and 1964).
Approximate Height and Weight: 5'8" - 6'0"
Distinguishing Characteristics: Reddish brown, short, recently cut hair and a short mustache. He had a possible scar or lump or discoloration on his left cheek. Possibly due to an accident, the left side of his face was fractured and depressed. The left femur displayed a healed fracture which had been treated with a metal rod implant. The injury probably occurred when the individual was an adult. He had moderate scoliosis (spinal curvature) and may have walked with a limp.
Dentals: The condition of his teeth were good.
Clothing: The clothing suggests moderate to warm temperatures.


Investigators
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
D/Sgt. Robin Sexton at MSP St. Ignace
906-643-8383


I highlighted the sentence about the metal rod implant in the left femur. My question is this: would a metal rod such as that have a serial number or other identifying mark that could be traced back to a manufacturer and then to a particular hospital and patient? I would think that manufacturers, hospitals and doctors would want to track such things in case of a recall of a medical device.

Thanks,

Hoppy

Paradise
01-16-2006, 12:36 AM
You bring up a good question. I can see your point about it being kept track of due to recalls but on the other hand, it was only a rod, it wasn't a hip or knee replacement. I'll try to check into it further.

hoppyfrog
01-16-2006, 10:05 AM
You bring up a good question. I can see your point about it being kept track of due to recalls but on the other hand, it was only a rod, it wasn't a hip or knee replacement. I'll try to check into it further.
Thanks for your help. And I see your point that it wasn't a joint replacement or a pacemaker. Still, even metal rods could be mis-manufactured and you'd think for liability reasons the manufacturer would want to notify everyone who received one.

Remember the case in the news last week where tainted dog food had to be recalled? They put identifying marks on bags of dog food, so I hope they'd do the same for medical devices!

Hoppy

PonderingThings
01-16-2006, 03:55 PM
It is my understanding that there is a move on to put a serial number on ALL products that are incorporated into someone's body. Even the smallest screw will have an identifying code.

Problem is currently not all components have that identifier. Some who do refer back only to a lot number, not an individual patient who got the component. Yes, it would be possible to trace shipments BUT in some cases the products are shipped in purchases that last quite a while, or are then shipped to a wide variety of offices/hospitals (depending on the product), so tracking it to an individual becomes too difficult.

Imagine a specific tire that only fits on one car. Lets use, for example purposes only, a 2005 Honda Accord. These cars are sold all over.

So lets say its a recall and somehow there is an identifying batch number. You know that these tires were sold with the cars that were shipped only to New York State. Because of the sheer number of cars, that were sold in New York State, even for that short time period, the possibility of running down all the owners, and all the people that the car switched title to, would be extremely difficult.... not impossible... but difficult.

In the case of a medical product, it might have been shipped to multiple States... therefore, impossible to trace backwards... but perhaps possible to confirm once a potential match to the victim is identified.

Make sense?

hoppyfrog
01-24-2006, 08:49 PM
You bring up a good question. I can see your point about it being kept track of due to recalls but on the other hand, it was only a rod, it wasn't a hip or knee replacement. I'll try to check into it further.
Have you found out anything yet?

Thanks,

Hoppy

gatetrekker44
01-25-2006, 12:04 AM
the composition of the rod maybe a clue to id'ing the victim. Each company has a specific "formula" of metals in specific %'s that are unique to a manufacturer. A metallurgical analysis could very well lead to the manufacturer, and then to the time frame when the rod was created and sold.

Something in the overall description makes me wonder if this person may have been in the military at one time? Has anyone checked that possible source of info?

hoppyfrog
01-25-2006, 12:55 AM
Something in the overall description makes me wonder if this person may have been in the military at one time? Has anyone checked that possible source of info?
What makes you think military?

Paradise
01-25-2006, 01:57 AM
I didn't forget about you. I was trying to get in touch with someone from a hip replacement/problem forum I belong to. Hopefully I'll hear back by tomorrow. I'll let you know as soon as I hear something.

hoppyfrog
01-25-2006, 01:13 PM
I didn't forget about you. I was trying to get in touch with someone from a hip replacement/problem forum I belong to. Hopefully I'll hear back by tomorrow. I'll let you know as soon as I hear something.
Thanks! I really appreciate it.

Hoppy

Paradise
01-25-2006, 10:25 PM
Ok so far everyone on the totallyhip.org forum thinks that there should be some sort of identifying mark or number on the metal rod. I'm going to e-mail the area director on doenetwork to see if this was ever checked into. I've also e-mailed a retired orthopedic surgeon who sometimes posts on totally hip to see what he has to say.

gatetrekker44
01-26-2006, 12:40 AM
I don't know exactly what makes me think military-I guess the fact that:
the age, the short hair and mustache, the teeth in good condition, and the fact that the leg fracture was repaired with a rod, but the injury to the face
was not well-repaired. That kind of goes with the military mentality of "fix 'em up well enough to serve", but the facial injury wasn't dealt with.

Just something about the description made me think of a military member who may have recently gotten out on a medical discharge-wonder if the authorities that have jurisdiction checked VA hospital records in the area?

Paradise
01-26-2006, 02:10 PM
I can't believe it but I got an e-mail from the orthopaedic surgeon this morning! What he said was pretty much what I was thinking, but there is some small possibility that he could be ID'd through this. I'm still waiting to hear back from the Michigan area director on doe. I know she's a busy lady.

Hello, Kristen
Thank you for your question
1) I cannot connect to the above webpage, the message says that "The bandwidth of the page server is exceeded".
2) You speak about "a metal rod" inserted in a femur - a metallic device in use since 1940's, produced in millions of exemplars by very many manufacturers, many of them no longer on the market. 20 years (1987-2006) is a very long time period in the development of orthopaedic devices.

Moreover, it is not clear if you have the extracted rod (nail) available, or if you have only x-ray pictures, or only know hearsay way that the person had this device once.
Don't forget that it is usual to remove the intramedullary nail after some 1 -2 years, especially if is causing problems, when the fracture healed.
The only way to know if a metal rod had a serial number etched is to look at the rod. Big manufacturers are etching serial numbers on its femoral rods today, but to know if they did it in the 1980's, you should ask them. And very probably many of the manufacturers disappeared from the market since then.

The easiest way to know is to look at the intramedullary nail (your name "metal rod") directly.

If there is such number you may then proceed further.
You may then take a photography and ask the manufacturers of orthopaedic device if they manufactured this type of the femoral intramedullary nail, and when you find the right manufacturer you may ask to know the local dealer. The local dealer would know the hospitals to whom he sold this individual nail .
Then it all depend on the hospital and surgeon if they annotate the serial numbers of the nails in the patients journals.
I very much doubt that one did that in the 1980īs, whereas it is a standard practice today.

Moreover, the dealers changed, the patient journals may disappear (they do it although they theoretically should not) etc.
It must be a nice detective work to locate a person from an orthopaedic device, and unless you are not writing a mystery novel I think that the probability of success is not big.
But if you wish, go on. If you will succeed, please, let me know - it is an interesting theme.
Best wishes
Valdemar Surin, MD, PhD

hoppyfrog
01-26-2006, 08:22 PM
I don't know exactly what makes me think military-I guess the fact that:
the age, the short hair and mustache, the teeth in good condition, and the fact that the leg fracture was repaired with a rod, but the injury to the face
was not well-repaired. That kind of goes with the military mentality of "fix 'em up well enough to serve", but the facial injury wasn't dealt with.

Just something about the description made me think of a military member who may have recently gotten out on a medical discharge-wonder if the authorities that have jurisdiction checked VA hospital records in the area?
I see what you mean. I wonder if there are any VA hospitals in the area.

Hoppy

hoppyfrog
01-26-2006, 08:24 PM
I can't believe it but I got an e-mail from the orthopaedic surgeon this morning! What he said was pretty much what I was thinking, but there is some small possibility that he could be ID'd through this. I'm still waiting to hear back from the Michigan area director on doe. I know she's a busy lady.
Thanks for the follow-up. When you hear from the Michigan area director on doe, let us know.

Hoppy

mtrooper
11-10-2009, 07:45 PM
Unidentified Caucasian Male

Chippewa county, Whitefish Township, Michigan
# Located October 24, 1987
# No evidence indicating cause or manner of death.
# This individual has been deceased since January 1987 to September 1987

Vital Statistics

Estimated age: 23 - 30 years old -- born between 1957 and 1964

Approximate Height : 5'8" - 6'0"

Distinguishing Characteristics: Reddish brown, short, recently cut hair and a short mustache. The remains displayed a number of pathological lesions, some of which may have been related to a single incident. The left femur displayed a healed rotational fracture which had been treated with a metal rod implant. Alignment was good and the trauma might not have caused later problems. The injury probably occurred when the individual was an adult. Possibly related to the same accident were injuries to the left side of the face and nose. The left cheek bone and orbit displayed comminuted fractures. The left side of the face was depressed posteriorly and the left cheek bone displayed a mass of exostosis (bony growth). The bridge of the nose displayed severe fractures. Possibly the injury to the tooth occurred at the same time the left side of the face was injured. The spinal column displayed a moderate amount of scoliosis. A possible old fracture was noted on the right clavicle. This individual possibly walked with a limp.

Dentals: Teeth were in good condition. The dental treatment and care of the individual suggested that he was neither indigent nor a vagrant. The treatment had been rather thorough and there were no serious pathologies that had gone untreated. Nor was there more than a moderate amount of accumulated tartar. The left central maxillary incisor was capped with a composite and displayed a root canal.

Clothing: The clothing suggests moderate to warm temperatures.

Circumstances
This individual was located north of Newberry. The exact location was 0.2 miles south of Lake Superior and 1.2 miles WSW of Little Lake Harbor near the Blue hiking trail. Chippewa county Whitefish Township.

Investigating Agency

Michigan State Police: St. Ignace Post
D/Sgt. Robin Sexton
906-643-8383
Agency Case Number: 82-1102-87

Source: Michigan State Police

mtrooper
11-10-2009, 07:47 PM
Possible match?


Endangered Missing Adult

If you believe you have any information regarding this case that will be helpful in this investigation please contact:
Miami Township Police Department at (513) 248-3721

Name: Ronald Allen Vonderheide
Classification: Endangered Missing Adult
Alias / Nickname: Ron
Date of Birth: 1964-01-23
Date Missing: 1987-05-05
From City/State: Cincinnati, OH
Missing From (Country): USA
Age at Time of Disappearance: 23
Gender: Male
Race: White
Height: 70 inches
Weight: 160 to 185 pounds
Hair Color: Lt. Brown
Eye Color: Blue
Complexion: Light
Identifying Characteristics: Quarter size scar on back of upper left arm, quarter size scar on back, bullet lodged in back in ribs, missing crown on upper front tooth, previously fractured ankle.
Clothing: T-shirt, shorts, athletic shoes.
Circumstances of Disappearance: Unknown. Ronald was last seen at approximately 9:00am at his residence in the vicinity if of the 6200 block of Cambridge Ave. in Cincinnati, OH.
Investigative Agency: Miami Township Police Department
Phone: (513) 248-3721
Investigative Case #: 06-5493
NCIC #: M-865873838

http://www.theyaremissed.org/ncma/gallery/ncmaprofile_all.php?A200604060S

mtrooper
11-10-2009, 07:50 PM
Here is the link for john doe:

http://www.michigandoes.com/UID/Chippewa1.html

mtrooper
11-10-2009, 07:56 PM
Ok the looks are strikingly similar but really gets me is the injures. I spoke with the mother she confirmed that when her son was 16 he was hit while he was riding his moped and there was a lot of damage done to the left side of his body. Let me know what you think.

distracted 1976
11-10-2009, 08:14 PM
Looks good to me mtrooper. Hope you call it in, you never know!

Spurser
11-10-2009, 08:33 PM
What about that bullet Ronald has lodged in the back of his ribs? I don't see that being mentioned for the John Doe.

not_my_kids
11-10-2009, 08:54 PM
Looks very good to me.
I'd submit it, or contact them for a rule out list. Is he on NAMUS?

mtrooper
11-10-2009, 08:58 PM
No he is not on namus. I am not sure about the bullet, I am wondering if they think that it might be part of his death, so they are not releasing it. I am not sure, the MSP are really weird about releasing info. I submitted it this evening, the detective is off tomorrow so maybe I will hear from him on Thursday. I did speak with the mother and she also mentioned the tooth. I am very interested to see what they say. I am wondering if they have run DNA on him, or if they will have to dig him up.

mtrooper
11-10-2009, 09:08 PM
There is not much more info on either of them but here is another link,

http://z13.invisionfree.com/PorchlightUSA/index.php?showtopic=8502&st=0&

JoeDean
11-11-2009, 06:02 AM
The shape of their nose and jawline is very similiar. Good work, looks like a very close match

kitbits
11-11-2009, 06:48 AM
looks pretty darn close to me...I was thinking about the bullet, as well, but perhaps you're right that they may not want that info out there.
wtg!

PFF
11-11-2009, 07:27 AM
Hmmm-I no expert-but when I read of those injuries on the left hand side-motorcycle or car accident came to mind--after all a moped-mini motorcycle! Try to Connect with Mich about Missing Ohio Persons and connect with Ohio about John Doe at same time!

dreamweaver
11-11-2009, 10:08 AM
I say go for it. Submit it for a possible match.

mtrooper
11-11-2009, 11:54 AM
So apparently the MSP dont work on Veterans day. I will call the LE and see what they have to say.

mtrooper
11-11-2009, 04:18 PM
OK update, I am meeting with MSP tomorrow. They think that it is pretty close! I am going to try to get fingerprints for the missing person, and compare them to the DOE. Apparently they have 3 finger prints from the doe. Wish me luck!

mtrooper
11-11-2009, 04:19 PM
I also found out that they were skeletal remains (all but some of his feet, and some of his pelvis and organs) , what do you think the chances are the a bullet would fall out?

kitbits
11-12-2009, 07:22 AM
oooo GOOD LUCK!!

and...hmmm...I guess it depends on how well the bullet was lodged, but it's quite possible, I'm guessing--no expertise in these things, mind.

mtrooper
11-12-2009, 09:25 AM
Ok thats what I get for getting excited. They cancelled the appointment, so I guess they are just going to let me know when they know somthing. I have to tell you how frustrated I get when I find a good match and then they ditch me. Very frustrated right now<--------

Spurser
11-12-2009, 10:10 AM
I know. It is very frustrating. But you are doing a great job and making things happen!

mtrooper
11-12-2009, 02:16 PM
Just spoke with the LE, the denals are a match. They are now looking to fingerprints. I guess if thoes are a match then our job here is done.

chaddylex
11-12-2009, 02:47 PM
Great work mtrooper!!!! Keep us posted on those fingerprints!!

maggieo
11-12-2009, 09:42 PM
Dentals are a match?? Wow! I've had my eye on this thread -- thought you made an excellent match here... fingers are crossed!

JoeDean
11-13-2009, 07:00 AM
Great work Mtrooper, now his family can finally know where he is.

Guinevere
11-13-2009, 07:46 AM
Awesome Job :thumb: If dentals were a match then the finger prints should be a match too. I'm sure the family will be thankful they can finally have some closure. Still this only opens the door to the hows, whys, and whats surrounding his disappearance.

MommaD
11-13-2009, 09:24 AM
Way To Go MTrooper !!!!! What a great gift you gave this family.. Truly a Blessing .... Very Nice work.. Bless you MTrooper...

Terrilynn
11-13-2009, 09:25 AM
This is so weird, the U.P had two murders in the same county within months of each other, both were around the same are, same height, weight, and hair color and very similar in appearance. The one difference is eye color. My brother Rod Allen Ribble was missing on Nov. 14 and found in Jan he had apparently drifted in the Edison power plant from the water in Sault Ste Marie. He had on the palm tree sweat shirt that he bought in Florida on a visit with me but it wasn’t on him when he was found. Death was undetermined but in the paper it said his face was contorted on one side. Rod was originally from the Lapeer/Metamora area in Michigan. A friend of Rod’s hired a psychic who said they saw him in a wooded area with picnic tables…wonder if the psychic was picking up on this guy. There are some people that think my brother is still alive and that this other guys body was used to end the case as there was a picture in the Detroit news a year later of a crowd at a boat show with a guy the splitting image of my brother and the person even stood exactly the same way, his shirt was off and he had the same developed muscles. Another person said he saw Rod at some gambling casino. Personally I think he’s dead but there are so many suspicious things surrounding that time.

kitbits
11-13-2009, 09:27 AM
Well done, mrtrooper!!!!! :woohoo:

mtrooper
11-13-2009, 11:32 AM
OK oddly enough I recieved an e-mail this morning saying that the prints were not a match. I am not really sure how they were able to get prints off of skeletal remains. They used prints that the FBI had on the missing person instead of the ones that I had sent from the Sherriffs department when he was arrested in 1986. So I have a few concerns. They are going to try to get a hold of the guy who examined the bones and get his opinion. I will keep my finger crossed, but I really would feel more comfortable with DNA.

Guinevere
11-13-2009, 05:41 PM
OK oddly enough I recieved an e-mail this morning saying that the prints were not a match. I am not really sure how they were able to get prints off of skeletal remains. They used prints that the FBI had on the missing person instead of the ones that I had sent from the Sherriffs department when he was arrested in 1986. So I have a few concerns. They are going to try to get a hold of the guy who examined the bones and get his opinion. I will keep my finger crossed, but I really would feel more comfortable with DNA.

Wow thats is very strange :waitasec: How would you get prints from skeletal remains? Possible even? DNA would be a much better indicator.

mtrooper
11-13-2009, 10:01 PM
No more news today. I am SO out of the loop. I really despise the LE some times. Ungrateful comes to mind.

kitbits
11-14-2009, 05:49 AM
No more news today. I am SO out of the loop. I really despise the LE some times. Ungrateful comes to mind.

hang in there, mrtrooper...

yeah, waiting is a drag...am waiting to hear back about my submission...

and that fingerprint thing...WHAT? mmmkay...somebody must be confused. DNA all the way!

mtrooper
11-15-2009, 09:07 PM
I have the tune from jepardy playing in my head.....I guess it being the weekend and all.

Donjeta
01-25-2011, 12:49 PM
http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/94ummi.html
http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/images/94UMMI.jpghttp://www.doenetwork.org/cases/images/94UMMI2.jpg

webrocket
03-21-2011, 05:08 PM
I was going to send in a message to a moderator to change the heading to a rule out. I decided to look at Namus and oddly they have the UID listed as found in a different town and county (McMillan Township, Luce County) than the original link from the State of Michigan (Whitefish Township, Chippewa County). Clearly it is the same UID.

here is the Namus link and no one is listed as being ruled out:

https://identifyus.org/cases/6754

Namus also says there are fingerprints on file but I am doing my own head scratching as to how one can obtain fingerprints from a skeleton.

to Mtrooper, why don't you try the contact listed on the Namus page. you might get a different response especially if you were told the dentals were a match.

webrocket
10-22-2011, 03:21 PM
UID is in Namus, no rule outs:

https://identifyus.org/cases/6754

the rod had been removed before his death:

"The skeleton displayed a healed spiral fracture to the left femur which had been treated with a temporary metal rod implant. The rod had been removed prior to death."

webrocket
10-22-2011, 03:33 PM
this guy makes the most sense in terms of a possible match, David Thomson:

https://www.findthemissing.org/cases/1890/1/

last seen July 04, 1979 in MN, traveled about, was between 5'8-5'11" and had brown hair. in terms of skeletal information, while not exactly the same as the UID is the closest I could find:

In a car accident in 1964 resulting in a fracture in his growth bone of left shoulder, foreshortening his left arm, serious left leg fracture resulting in leg being 3/8 of an inch shorter. Subsequent diagnosis of scoliosis.

so Thomson had both a prior leg fracture and scoliosis.

ETA - I should add that Thomson was older than the upper range, but they are only estimates anyway.

Harmony2
10-22-2011, 05:35 PM
this guy makes the most sense in terms of a possible match, David Thomson:

https://www.findthemissing.org/cases/1890/1/

last seen July 04, 1979 in MN, traveled about, was between 5'8-5'11" and had brown hair. in terms of skeletal information, while not exactly the same as the UID is the closest I could find:

In a car accident in 1964 resulting in a fracture in his growth bone of left shoulder, foreshortening his left arm, serious left leg fracture resulting in leg being 3/8 of an inch shorter. Subsequent diagnosis of scoliosis.

so Thomson had both a prior leg fracture and scoliosis.

ETA - I should add that Thomson was older than the upper range, but they are only estimates anyway.

for comparison- David Thomson:

http://i922.photobucket.com/albums/ad64/SoulShynz9293/missingDT.png http://i922.photobucket.com/albums/ad64/SoulShynz9293/missingDT2.png

https://www.findthemissing.org/cases/1890/1/

http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/images/94UMMI1.jpg http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/images/94UMMI2.jpg

http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/94ummi.html

webrocket
10-22-2011, 05:48 PM
thanks Harmony.

if the hair on the UID is accurate, the Thomson was balder when he was last seen and I don't see the match.

if the hair is a guess, then it is not helpful.

the UID's chin looks smaller but neither of their faces both have a rounded look. they both appear somewhat elongated to me.

CarlK90245
10-22-2011, 06:02 PM
The foreheads are what is hanging me up on this one. David has a high forehead with a prominent brow ridge. The UID has a short, sloping forehead.

webrocket
10-22-2011, 06:25 PM
Thomson's neck appears longer than the UID.

it is not everyday you can find a possible match with two conditions like a prior leg fracture and scoliosis.

probably the biggest downside is that Thomson also had a prior left shoulder fracture which is not mentioned with the UID.

reasypeasy
03-29-2012, 02:18 PM
There are a few points of similarity between this John Doe and Jackie Larry Letney

http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/340dmak.html
http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/l/letney_jackie.html

Pros: height, hair, timeframes, known to wear similar looking moustache, has a scar on forehead and photos show a difference in left/right sides of face, has a limp, one picture of him shows him wearing a khaki-green jacket
Cons: Jackie is 4 years older than top end of range. Michigan is quite a way outside the Fairbanks to Texas journey we think Jackie was attempting. The recon resemblance isn't wonderful.

mtrooper
07-13-2012, 12:01 AM
BTW- MSP said my previous submission (Ronald Vonderheide) was not a match. I am not sure how they came to that conclusion as I lack both a certain male anatomical part and a badge (sorry for sounding snide... Just tired of LE crap) throwing this out there for a second opinion.

Steven Tuomi- supposedly a victim of Dahmer. The hair color on the reconstruction should be auburn. Apparently they didn't have that color wig available.
http://www.doenetwork.org/cases/629dmwi.html