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  1. #1
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    AL - Bobby Kellum, 19, Marshall County, 15 May 1977

    Warning - article contains a graphic photo of deceased. Can anyone find this guy on Doe? I can't get the website to come up for me right now.

    30-year-old cold case heating up

    Marshall County, Alabama

    After publicity on the case's 30th anniversary, a Limestone County family believes they know who he is.


    In May of 1977, a man's body was found burned, spray painted and his throat slashed in the Martling Cemetery.


    Marshall County authorities heavily publicized a photo of the deceased man hoping to identify him, but there were no matches. He was eventually buried in the Arab City Cemetery. The tomb is marked "unidentified."

    As Dean Kellum works in his machine shop a few counties away in Athens, he hopes the same thing but for a different reason.


    30-years-ago his brother, Bobby, left for a trip to Talladega with his girlfriend and never returned.


    "As the years past, we just sorta excepted the fact that he was gone," Dean Kellum said.
    He didn't know what happened to Bobby, whether he was dead or alive.


    But now, decades later, Dean Kellum believes he could know the fate his brother suffered.
    "There's a lot of resemblance you know in the face and the forehead and all that. It's possible. But I'm 75 percent sure, but not a 100 percent," Dean Kellum said.



    Authorities seeking ID of victim in '77 murder plan exhumation


    Dean Kellum of Athens said he feels like the body is that of his brother, Bobby Kellum, who disappeared at age 18 after leaving his home in Limestone County 30 years ago. Kellum saw a recent report on the decades-old killing on WHNT-TV and contacted Marshall County officials.

    Kellum said he and his mother, Wilma Hicks, have agreed to provide a DNA sample to see if it matches DNA to be taken from the remains, buried at Arab City Cemetery with a grave marker that has no name, just a date of death.

    Kellum hopes authorities can find the killer if the remains are found to be those of his brother.

    "They need to be brought to justice," he said.

    Bobby Kellum was never seen again after he and a girlfriend from Anniston told relatives they were going to the race track in Talladega, Kellum said. When Bobby failed to return, Kellum said he figured his brother was in trouble with police because he was on probation for writing bad checks when he left.

    A few weeks after the May disappearance, he said, Kellum's girlfriend wrote Hicks saying he had left her by hitchhiking and wanting to know if he made it home.

    Meanwhile, on May 18, 1977, passersby found an unidentified murder victim at Marling Cemetery near Albertville. The victim had been covered in yellow paint, his throat had been cut and a liquid had been poured on him that burned off his fingerprints, said former Marshall County chief deputy Lacy Galloway.







  2. #2
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    That certainly looks promising. I wonder what "heavily publicized" meant if his brother lived in the state and never saw the picture? I also love the statement that DNA test results could take anywhere from 6 weeks to 2 years.

    I would be shocked if this was not the right identification, since the brother identified a tattoo.

  3. #3
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    Evidently this guy was never reported missing. That's sad.

  4. #4
    timetravel is offline care giver of all stray and feral cats who come my way.
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    he said his brother was in trouble for writing bad checks....wonder if it was someone he double crossed???

  5. #5
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Body of 30-year murder victim exhumed

    Picture of exhumation at link

    Marshall County Sheriff Scott Walls said he's "95 percent sure" that it's the body of Bobby Kellum of Athens, who disappeared after he and his girlfriend left to go to Talladega in May 1977.

    Walls said he began working on the case as an investigator in 1988. "This is the oldest (unsolved) homicide case we have in modern times," he said.


    Identifying the remains could take eight to 10 weeks if forensics experts have tissues to examine, Walls said. If not, he said, the remains will be sent to the Federal Bureau of Investigation's laboratory in Quantico, Va., for nuclear DNA identification. That process could take 24 to 36 months, he said.

  6. #6
    timetravel is offline care giver of all stray and feral cats who come my way.
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    let's hope there is enough tissue left for examination....8 to 10 weeks is long, but not as long as two to three years...

  7. #7
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Quote Originally Posted by timetravel View Post
    let's hope there is enough tissue left for examination....8 to 10 weeks is long, but not as long as two to three years...
    I hope so too. This was such a gruesome murder, and the body is not even listed on Doe.

    Former Marshall County Coroner P.T. Williams said he believes that the remains of a murder victim dead 30 years and exhumed Tuesday morning are those of Bobby Kellum of Limestone County.

    "I'm 95 percent sure it's him," Williams said shortly after the remains were taken from Arab City Cemetery to Heritage Funeral Home for state forensic experts to examine.

    Sheriff Scott Walls said samples of bone and teeth will undergo DNA testing. That could take up to three years if the remains are sent to the FBI's laboratory in Quantico, Va., or 10 weeks if up to $5,000 can be raised for a company to do the job, he said.


    Walls said Kellum's mother, Wilma Hicks of Athens, and other relatives will be contacted soon about providing DNA to see if it matches DNA taken from the remains.


    Exhuming the remains could have cost the Sheriff's Department $5,000, he said, but Carr Funeral Home of Guntersville did not charge for that or the reinterment.


    Williams, 74, of the Ruth community near Arab, was coroner from 1975 until 1979.


    Williams recalled examining the body of the victim. He died May 18, 1977, after his throat was cut "from ear to ear," Williams said.


    The cut was done in such a manner that the man "either had to be unconscious or had several people holding him down when it was done."
    Williams said the victim was also stabbed in the chest, and his body was burned and covered with yellow latex paint.

  8. #8
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Digging for answers

    Digging for answers

    Walls called the case Marshall County’s “oldest unsolved homicide in modern times.”

    “In 1977, I made a picture of him at the funeral home and his features are very similar to Kellum’s. And, the boots and the jeans the victim was wearing are of the type Kellum was known to wear.

    “The remains of a belt with two letters H and A can be seen, and Kellum was known to ride a Harley [Davidson] motorcycle.”

    As the body was being returned to its resting place — marked by a gray marble plaque stating: “Unidentified, May 18, 1977, Thou Only Knowest Who He Is,” — Walls said, “The remains were not in good shape and might have to go through a nuclear mitochondrial testing at the FBI lab at Quantico, Virginia.”

    Walls later said, “The FBI has said it would take six to eight months to obtain results, but we have been waiting more than a year for results in another case. I believe it would be more like 24 to 34 months or more because the shorter time is in reference to high profile cases.

    “This is not a case they are going to push. We could send the samples to a private lab for testing, but in both cases the cost might be prohibitive. We will be looking at our best options.”

    The greatest hurdle will be acquiring the money to pay for the testing once a testing lab is chosen.

  9. #9
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Donations for DNA testing

    Body's identity may be learned in weeks

    Authorities could know by August whether the body of a murder victim exhumed last month in Arab is that of a Limestone County man who disappeared 30 years ago.

    Marshall County Sheriff Scott Walls said Thursday that DNA test results could be known in six to 10 weeks.

    Walls had said it could take up to three years if the tests were done by the FBI at its laboratory in Quantico, Va., or in about 2 1/2 months if $5,000 could be raised to hire a private company to do the job.


    But he said that his department had recently received $4,000 in donations from local businesses and other private donors and that a private lab had agreed to give a $1,000 discount.


    "These are very generous people who are interested in what we're trying to do," Walls said. "We greatly appreciate their interest."

  10. #10
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Marshall sheriff to announce DNA results on exhumed man


    Marshall County Sheriff Scott Walls said this morning he will announce Friday whether DNA test results have identified a murder victim exhumed in May as a Limestone County man who disappeared 30 years ago.

    Walls said he will hold a press conference at 9 a.m. at his office.


  11. #11
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    Wow, this is an amazing story. Please post an update after the press conference!

  12. #12
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    OH wow. It will be great if it's a match! I hate all these UIDs being out there
    I can't complain but sometimes I still do. Life's been good to me so far. - Joe Walsh

  13. #13
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Confirmed!

    Investigators confirmed today that it is Bobby Kellum, who disappeared about that time.

    Murder on the Mountain: DNA test results on exhumed body

    DNA test results released today by the Marshall County Sheriff's Department indicate that the identity of the man found murdered 30 years ago is Bobby Kellum.


    However, the people who killed him will not spend one day in jail for the crime.


    Kellum was found murdered in 1977 in the Martling Cemetery near Albertville.


    Investigators say the two murder suspects in the case have since died; and, the only witness is terminally ill.

  14. #14
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    Thanks, Marie for posting the results of the press conference. It's unfortunate no one can be prosecuted but at least his family have some answers now.
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  15. #15
    Marie is offline Daughter, if you don't remember us...who will?
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    Excellent article about the case

    Reporter George Jones has written an excellent in depth article about this case. All the details are given - why and how Bobby was killed and by whom. It's well written and a good read, but it's also a sad and gruesome story.

    [Marshall County Sheriff Scott Walls] based on information developed by the investigation and interview of a surviving witness of the murder, described the scenario of events surrounding the murder.... much more in the article.

    And this is another article, mostly about Bobby's brother who says,
    "I have no bitterness in my heart, because, you know we've got judgement coming when we leave this walk of life." There's also video at this link.

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