I ran across this while researching something else.
On Valentine's Day in 1975, the body of a 16-17 year old white male was found in Belle Chasse, Louisiana. He had committed suicide by hanging himself from a persimmon tree using a bedsheet. He was wearing a maroon and yellow knit shirt, blue trousers and unmatched socks. He was not wearing shoes. A jar laying against the tree trunk was filled with note paper.
He left a suicide note, addressed to "mom and dad" which read in part: "When you stop growing you are dead. I stopped growing long ago. I never did develop into a real person and I cannot tolerate the false and empty existence I have created".
He included this notation for the police who would eventually find him: "You are bound to preserve domestic peace and order. If you pursue who I was (and spend hundreds of dollars) you will accomplish little. There are no legal consequences of my death or any kind of entanglements. All that can happen is that you will shatter the domestic peace and order of two innocent lives. Do not deprive them of the hope that their 'missing' son will return . . .Let me be, let it be as if I wasn't ever here. Simply cremate me as John Doe."
He goes on to say "It is best if I cease to live, quietly, than risk that later I will break and shatter by violence or linger years under care. I implore you to see a psychiatrist in order that you might understand my death and my life. Ask thoroughly about what I was and you will see that it is not tragic that I am gone, but more natural than if I continued."
In a section entitled "why you should not feel responsible", the young man wrote: "I was born with a definite pervasive melancholy . . .what frustrated me most in the last year was that I had built no ties to family or friends. There was nothing of lasting worth and value. I led a detached existence and I was a parody of a person - literally and figuratively. I didn't tell jokes - I was a joke".
The suicide note is quite lengthy, and cites the writings of Emile Durkheim, a philosopher and psychologist. The young man said Durkheim called suicide "an inner direction of homicidal feelings against someone else."
He ends the note by saying "I am no longer interested in the world and know that it is not interested in me. When you stop growing you are dead. I stopped growing a long time ago."
On a separate scrap of paper, he wrote this note to his parents: "You have provided me with excellent advantages and privileges and experiences. I am extremely grateful for all of your sacrifices, time and support. I am now repaying you with an arrogant act. In this light, I do see it as criminal. I can only hope that you see that it was me who caused it."
This young man's description and fingerprints were circulated to police throughout the U.S., but he was not identified as of March 1975. I am hoping by putting this here on the cold case thread, it might trigger someone's memory about a missing young man.
This "John Doe" seemed to be intelligent and was extremely philosophical for a teenage boy. He refers to the advantages and privileges his parents provided, which could mean he was from a well-to-do family. There was no car found in the area, so he must have taken the bus or hitchiked to the wooded area where he ended his life.
If you are interested, the complete story is in the March 27, 1975 Post-Crescent, Appleton-Neenah-Menosha, Wisconsin.
If anyone knows anything about this young man, I'd love to hear it.