What Kind of Real Mysteries Have you Experienced?

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Don’t count the ones where you’ve misplaced something and can’t find it, or something you can’t remember. I want to hear about any kind of mystery you’ve encountered–the kind that could end up in a mystery story.

Years ago, and I mean lots of years because I think I was 9 or 10 at the time, a young man a block away committed suicide by hanging himself in his garage. At the time, the mystery to me was why he’d done it. I really knew nothing about him, although when I heard adults talking about him, no one else seemed to know the reason either. I remember standing in front of the garage and wondering what caused him to do it.

When I was even younger, one of the church ladies and a friend of my mom, killed her husband with an ax by chopping his head open. No one knew exactly whey, though I overheard one of the other ladies say, “He was so boring, if I’d been married to him, I’d have done the same.” That’s really all I know, except for the fact the murderous wife was put into a mental hospital.

Also when I was in grammar school (6th grade),  a new family moved in with three girls, one was my age and she had an older sister and a younger one. Now, looking back, I know they were poor as can be. The house they lived in was tiny, the girls slept in a screened-in porch, and the one who was my age wore dresses that were far too short for her. I romanticized this family. I thought the girls were beautiful, they had wispy blonde hair. I loved going to their house and wondered what it might be like to sleep on that porch. I was never invited, and they didn’t stay in the neighborhood long. I’m sure there is a mystery attached to what little I recall.

Fast forwarding, there have been two murders where I live now. The first was motivated by greed–the murderer dumb as could be. He killed his landlord and stole all the rent money from him he’d collected and left the dead man in his truck on the side of the road. The murderer might have been smart enough to not leave fingerprints, but when he started buying expensive fancy belt buckles and boots in town, it wasn’t long before he was caught.

Second murder was motivated by passion and greed. A woman who owned a mountain lodge was murdered, and her lover shot in the head while they slept. There were no witnesses or clues. A few months later, it all came out when the paid-for-hire murderer tried to get more money for the one who hired him–the woman’s estranged husband. He shot the murderer. Yes, the husband was arrested and is now serving time.

What about you? What real mysteries have you experienced or happened near you?

Marilyn

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About marilynm

Marilyn Meredith is the author of over thirty-five books, including the award winning Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. She is also the author of the Rocky Bluff P.D. series. Her two latest books are Not as it Seems and A Crushing Death. She's a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, Epic, Public Safety Writers Association.
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10 Responses to What Kind of Real Mysteries Have you Experienced?

  1. skyecaitlin says:

    Marilyn, I have encountered many things like this in my life: I dated a man who everyone liked; he was odd and I didn’t want to continue dating him any longer. He later stabbed a fellow teacher to death with an ice pic; that’s why the state of NJ instituted the fingerprint law for all teachers–later the authorities discovered he had been tried for statutory rape. A neighbor whose son went to school with my children, was arrested, charged and convicted in the murder of a woman who owned a cake company in the next town. He had been the ‘hit man’ hired by the woman’s husband. I was also physically ‘stalked’ for seven years—-long before the term became a household word. I later discovered his identity and that is an entire novel. I seem to attract dangerous people and I don’t know why.
    Then there are the ghostly happenstances, but too many to mention.

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  2. amymbennett says:

    The romance of living in a rural area, where no one locks their doors…. about a year ago, my husband had the feeling that someone had been in our house while we had all been at work during the day. His reason being that his Jack Daniels bottle had been moved–about a quarter of an inch off of where he normally kept it. And he claimed the level had gone down (not significantly, but noticeable to him.) It seemed silly, but we couldn’t shake that feeling. Nothing, it seemed, had been taken, although electronics, jewelry, firearms, etc. were out in the open. The only things missing were the Jack Daniels and, in retrospect, leftovers that I blamed my son for having as midnight snacks instead of leaving them for the next evening’s dinner and the occasional pantry item that I was sure I had purchased on my last grocery trip but wasn’t there when I needed it for a recipe.

    A few weeks later, we learned that a neighbor down the road, who owned a trailer he kept on his property, had discovered that someone had broken into his trailer and had been living there for a while. The stove had been used and empty food wrappers, foil, and cans were found in the trash. We started locking our doors. The Jack Daniels hasn’t been touched. And I wish that person had just knocked on the door and asked. I’d have fixed him a hot meal.

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    • skyecaitlin says:

      Now, that is scary when you consider what might have happened. We lock our doors even if we take a short walk outside.
      Please be careful in our society today. I also think it’s very kind of you to have been receptive to the man’ needs.

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      • amymbennett says:

        We do lock up now. There are only a few homes in our neighborhood (we live a mile off the main highway) and most belong to our family and to neighbors who have lived in the area for years. The only “business” in the area is our post office. Guess we’ll have to find a more “civilized” place to live!

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      • skyecaitlin says:

        It’s just society, nowadays, as a young girl, we never locked our home.

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  3. marilynm says:

    I grew up in Los Angeles, we did lock our doors–still someone managed to get in while everyone had gone to evening church–I was brought home early, went to the bathroom, left the door open and in the mirror saw an intruder race past. He went out the back door, just as he’d come in. He’ managed to unlock the door through the place where the milkman left our milk. Scary!

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