August 20th, 1955
Imagine it’s your birthday. You’re 7 months pregnant. You’re standing at your husband’s grave site, watching as his body is lowered into the ground. Family all around is watching you with side eyes, wondering if you’ll make another scene.
See — three days earlier he was killed. Not in any war, the way widows at the time were usually made. But randomly, on his lunch break from the auto shop. You called him to ask if he could stop and bring home milk. The baby in your belly was active and hungry. Not an hour later there was a sheriff at your door. When the words left his smug mouth you slapped the cigar right out of it and were subsequently whisked away in a car to the hospital for shock. When they had to drive you past the scene of the crime they ducked your head down so you couldn’t see his body. Laying there in the middle of route 8, five shots to the head. Twenty-six years old.
This isn’t some fictional nightmare.
This is the story of my grandmother, grandfather, and an unsolved family mystery that needs to be told.
Maybe it was too long ago to achieve any real absolution. But there is a still a wife and a daughter out here in the world who never received justice.
There are many facets to the story that have emerged over the years, and I see this platform as a chance to organize it all, connect with others who may be able to point me in the right directions, and simply tell it. For her. Her name is Olive.