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CA CA - Hinkley, WhtMale UP2510, 12-30, 'DON' belt buckle, Oct'78

Discussion in 'The Unidentified' started by tatertot, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. tatertot

    tatertot Member

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    I tried to recreate Carl's template for this UID, who is not yet listed on the Doe Network.

    NamUs UP # 2510 https://identifyus.org/en/cases/2510


    Unidentified White Male

    Found on October 8, 1978, in Hinkley, San Bernardino County, California

    Vital Stats

    Age: 12-30
    Height: 5'5" (65 inches, "measured")
    Weight: 135 lbs. ("measured")
    Hair: Blonde/strawberry, shoulder length
    Eye Color: Unknown

    Clothing

    * No clothing aside from a corroded piece of metal described as a "possible belt buckle" inscribed with the name "DON"

    Circumstances

    Exactly two words: "shallow grave"

    Body Condition:

    Decomposing/putrefaction

    Identifiers:

    Fingerprints: Not available
    Dentals: Available
    DNA: Sample submitted - Tests complete

    ----------------------

    That's definitely a belt buckle. Here's an identical one for sale on Amazon, also inscribed with "DON" although these vintage buckles can be found with many male first names. The site says it's a brass-colored pewter buckle made by Oden Inc. I emailed this link to the NamUs Regional Administrator.

    Amazon.com: Retro Personalized DON Pewter Belt Buckle by Oden: Everything Else

    [​IMG]

    Every listing for these buckles describes them as being made in the Seventies, and the UID was thought to have died "months" before. His clothing and the belt itself had apparently all disintegrated (unless there was so little of it left it was indistinguishable and this wasn't mentioned in NamUs) and even that large chunk of metal was badly corroded.

    There are no missing Donalds or Donovans in NamUs or Charley Project who even remotely fit the age, height and hair color description.

    Hinkley is an unincorporated town in the Mojave Desert. Could "Don Doe" be a victim of William Floyd Zamastil, who had killed and left other young victims in the desert in early 1978?
     
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  2. annemc2

    annemc2 her name is Suzanne Marie Sevakis

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    Nice job on the buckle (and on the template)!!
     
  3. CarlK90245

    CarlK90245 UID Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That belt buckle is much too disintegrated to only have been there a few months.

    Looking at MP's named "Don" or a variation of "Donald" who are missing in or before 1978, I see Donald Curtiss Jr. missing from Tucson AZ.

    http://www.nampn.org/cases/curtiss_donald.html

    [​IMG]

    But the location and circumstances don't seem to fit.

    The only other Dons missing in or before 1978 are:

    Donald Lee Baker http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/b/baker_donald.html
    Donald George Siskar http://www.nampn.org/cases/siskar_donald.html
    Donald Adams http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/a/adams_donald.html
     

    Attached Files:

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  4. Pinkruby

    Pinkruby Member

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    Forgetting the belt buckle for a minute....I'm going to throw out the name Paul Allard. NamUS 5787

    He was 14 when last seen in August 1976
    64 inches and 110 lbs

    He was trying to get from FL to CT when he disappeared which makes me think he was hitchhiking and could have fallen prey to a predator. :(

    I wish his parents had provided a more up to date pic as the one shown clearly portrays a boy younger than 14 JMO
     
  5. carbuff

    carbuff Well-Known Member

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    If the remains were complete, as it says, shouldn't they have been able to get a better age estimate than 12 to 30?

    Is the soil in that part of California particularly acid or alkaline? That can cause cheap pewter or pot metal to deteriorate very quickly.
     
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  6. Pinkruby

    Pinkruby Member

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    Did a bit more research into those Oden brand belt buckles with the first names on them....seems like they were popular/trendy around 1975. Given that it was a trend, I'd think this is more likely to be a teenager. JMO of course. Especially at 5'5. I find that fairly short for a man of 30--although not impossible I realize.
     
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  7. Pinkruby

    Pinkruby Member

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    Last one for now:

    Edward Nye missing from Oregon in June 1978 at 14 years old. His pic even shows blond shoulder length hair. Was last seen wearing jeans so a belt/belt buckle makes sense.

    I read on his Charley Project page that he was doing some type of outdoor activity outside Butte Falls in Prospect, Oregon with his church group. He told his brother he was going fishing by himself and I guess that was it. I searched and searched to see if his brothers name could have been Donald/Don/Donato/Donny/Donnie but I came up empty handed.:banghead:

    Also with the last name Nye, I wonder if DON could have been initials vs a first name. Or he just found it out there in Prospect and pocketed it. It could have already been in rough shape given the outdoor area his group was at.

    I hope that made sense. I should be in bed!
     
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  8. carbuff

    carbuff Well-Known Member

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    That style of belt buckle has always been popular in the West -- but usually in brass or silver, sometimes gold. These are more likely designed for the tourist trade. Usually there's a rack with buckles or other souvenirs with the 20 or 30 most common first names on them. They tend to be sold in places like gold rush towns, ghost towns, old West sites, etc. That would tend to indicate a younger person as well.
     
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  9. carbuff

    carbuff Well-Known Member

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    I picked up Nye also. Circumstances make it highly likely he drowned, but you never know. In the 70s people did sometimes just pick up and go without telling anybody, particularly if there were family or lifestyle issues. And there were several Dean Corll type monsters around picking up boys to murder.

    I have my doubts whether that belt buckle belonged to the person in the grave.

    http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/n/nye_edward.html
    http://www.oregon.gov/osp/MCC/pages/nye_edward.aspx
    http://www.missingkids.com/poster/NCMC/756709
    https://www.findthemissing.org/en/cases/6458/31
    http://www.nampn.org/cases/nye_edward.html
     
  10. tatertot

    tatertot Member

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    It would be interesting to know if the belt buckle was found at Don Doe's waist, suggesting he had been wearing it when he died. It's described as a "possible" belt buckle, which suggests no trace of a (presumably) leather belt was found or they would have known it was a buckle for certain. If he was wearing jeans, wouldn't at least the buttons and zipper have been found in the soil?

    I wish there was some information about wisdom teeth, at least, to give a possible hint on his age. Twelve to thirty is a big range.
     
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  11. carbuff

    carbuff Well-Known Member

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    Wisdom teeth, bone growth areas -- yeah, with a complete skeleton, you would think they could narrow it down. Mr. Carbuff suggested that perhaps the skeletal remains indicated an adult male but his small stature made them think he could be younger.

    I think we should submit Nye and Allard both. Allard was known to be hitching rides, and the area Nye went missing from is pretty much a straight shot down I-5 and across on CA58 (https://goo.gl/maps/JZuPy).
     
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  12. Jake479

    Jake479 Member

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  13. carbuff

    carbuff Well-Known Member

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    One ruleout: Anthony Allen 1962 Arkansas

    Information added to circumstances:

    John Doe #14-78" was found in a shallow desert grave approximately 2 miles West of Highway 395 near Hinkley, California on October 8, 1978, and in the advanced stages of decomposition. He is described as a White male juvenile, 5 '5 " tall, 135 lbs, with long blonde or light brown hair. His age is estimated to be somewhere between 12 and 17 years of age (but may be as old as 30). There were no visible scars or tattoos. His top left tooth was capped and there were other caps and metal fillings in his teeth.

    Dentals and DNA are available, and the Namus case file has been updated recently.
     
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