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Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake 

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Old 09-18-2013, 05:57 AM
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Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nati...icle-1.1459085

The remains of at at least five people have been found in two cars at the bottom of a western Oklahoma lake, authorities said Tuesday.

The vehicles, possibly missing for more than 40 years, were removed from Foss Lake in Elk City and might help solve cold cases from decades ago.

A submerged Camaro matches the description of a vehicle that went missing 1970 along with three teenagers. The other, a Chevrolet, has been missing along with two people since the late 1950s, the Daily Elk Citian reported.

"It's just been under water for 40 years. It's a mucky mess," Sheriff Bruce Peoples of Custer County told KWEY radio.

Dive teams found the rusty cars last week while training with sonar in the lake, said Betsy Randolph, an Oklahoma Highway Patrol spokeswoman.

"So they went back and did a scheduled dive today and were going to recover the cars," she said. "When they pulled the cars out of the water, the first one that came out, they found bones in the car."

The second car also contained bones. The divers went back in the water and retrieved a human skull.

These skeletal remains were taken to the medical examiner's office.

The Oklahoma Bureau of Investigation, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, the state medical examiner's office and the Custer County Sheriff's Department were all at the site Tuesday.

Authorities have not yet identified all of the remains. Randolph hopes that the discovery will bring closure to the families.

With News Wire Services

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Old 09-18-2013, 06:05 AM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...old-cases.html


They had lain undiscovered under an Oklahoma lake for over forty years.

And now the discovery of two rusting vintage cars containing six bodies has reignited the mystery of how three teenagers and three other people vanished more than four decades ago.

Highway patrol officers testing their sonar equipment Foss Lake near Elk City, Oklahoma on Friday stumbled upon the rusting 1969 Camaro and a Chevrolet dating back to the 1950s.

Inside the Camaro were three bodies believed to be of local teenagers who vanished after going out for a drive in 1970. Inside the Chevrolet were three more bodies – thought to be a 69-year-old man and his two friends who went missing in the state in the late 1950s or early 1960s.

Authorities have not formally identified all of the remains belong to but the local paper has made a clear connection between the discovered Camaro and the teens.

The latest reports by local station KFOR states that one of the victims in the car thought to have belonged to the teenager has been identified but they are waiting to notify all of the relatives of the victims involved before releasing any names.

Jimmy Allen Williams 16, Thomas Michael Rios, 18, and Leah Gail Johnson, 18, all went missing after going for a drive in Jimmy’s blue 1969 Camaro on November 20, 1970.

They are still listed as missing persons and were thought to have been headed to a football game in nearby Elk City but also could have detoured to go hunting at Foss Lake.

'It's just been under water for 40 years. It's a mucky mess,' Custer County Sheriff Bruce Peoples told KWEY radio.

In addition to the Custer County Sheriff's Department, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, the Oklahoma Bureau of Investigation, and the state medical examiner's office were on scene Tuesday.

Authorities discovered the accidentally as Betsy Randolph, spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, said dive teams were at Foss Lake conducting training with sonar when they came upon the vehicles last week.

'So they went back and did a scheduled dive today and were going to recover the cars. When they pulled the cars out of the water, the first one that came out they found bones in the car,' she said.

When they pulled the second car out, another set of bones was discovered. The divers then went back in the water and searched around and found a skull, she said.

The remains were turned over to the medical examiner's office m who are expected to use DNA from surviving family members to identify the skeletons.

'We thought it was just going to be stolen vehicles and that's not what it turned out to be, obviously,' Randolph said.

Custer County Sheriff Bruce Peoples said he also believes the bodies found in the Camaro are those of the three teens who went missing in 1970

He said: 'The decomposed nature of the cars makes it difficult to positively identify here at the scene.'

Local woman Kim Carmichael was a friend of the Camaro's owner, 16-year-old Jimmy Williams.

She told Oklahoma's Newsnine.com: 'I just remember how devastated everybody was

'We lived in a little town ... Nothing like that ever happened in Sayre.

At the time of the disappearance, Ms Carmichael's father was the undersheriff in nearby Beckham County where the teens were last seen. He died in 2003 never knowing what happened.

Ms Carmichael added: 'He said there was nothing ... There were no leads, no nothing. He said it was just like they vanished into thin air.

'I can't imagine what [Williams'] family was going through if I could see what my dad was going through.'

Oklahoma Highway Patrol said they are hoping the discovery will offer some relief to families who may have gone decades wondering where a missing loved one was.

Spokesman Betsy Randolph added: 'We're hoping these individuals, that this is going to bring some sort of closure to some families out there who have been waiting to hear about missing people,' she said. 'If that's the case, then we're thrilled we were able to bring some sort of closure to those families.'

The medical examiner had called a number of relatives of possible victims to the scene, many of whom said that they never lost hope.

'We never gave up. We always wanted some clue that somebody knew someone,' said Debbie McManaman, a possible victim's granddaughter.


**********pictures

1-Driver: Jimmy Allen Williams went missing along with two of his friends after they went for a drive in his 1969 blue Camaro

2- He was with friends Leah Gail Johnson

3- Thomas Michael Rios

4- Missing: Jimmy Williams poses next to his then brand-new Camaro as a 16-year-old in 1970

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Old 09-18-2013, 06:47 AM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

2 cars with the remains of missing people found in the same lake... I find it hard to believe that it's just a coincidence, i guess there may be some link between the two. Hopefully, this will bring some relief to their relatives.
Definitely an interesting cold (and wet) case, thanks for sharing.

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Old 09-18-2013, 02:06 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

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Originally Posted by gatagato View Post
2 cars with the remains of missing people found in the same lake... I find it hard to believe that it's just a coincidence, i guess there may be some link between the two. Hopefully, this will bring some relief to their relatives.
Definitely an interesting cold (and wet) case, thanks for sharing.
No problem! I saw it and thought it was interesting. It seems though that they went missing decades apart. That is really weird. I imagine we will never know the whole story but at least the family will get to properly bury the loved ones they spent so long looking for.

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Old 09-18-2013, 03:06 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

I love reading this stuff. so, thanks.

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Old 09-18-2013, 03:27 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

Cool story

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Old 09-18-2013, 04:44 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

I thought it was interesting too. Glad you guys enjoyed it.

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Old 09-18-2013, 05:38 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

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Originally Posted by gatagato View Post
2 cars with the remains of missing people found in the same lake... I find it hard to believe that it's just a coincidence, i guess there may be some link between the two. Hopefully, this will bring some relief to their relatives.
Definitely an interesting cold (and wet) case, thanks for sharing.
If there was a road or dirt track by this lake then it may be reasonable to assume they drove into it by accident at speed.

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Old 09-18-2013, 06:11 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

Seeing the photo of the young boy stood proudly next to his new car and then the image several decades later of it being raised from the lake, his body inside, is quite creepy.

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Old 09-18-2013, 06:30 PM
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Re: Decades-old Bodies Found in Sunken Cars in Oklahoma Lake

Easily one of the coolest posts yet! Poor 69' Camaro

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