This gave me a double take

I’m updating the cases of Peggy Parmenter and Bernard Rusness, a couple who disappeared in 1976 after a house fire that claimed the life of their son, and found the following quote in an article:

“Also discovered amidst the debris were the remains of the two family dogs and a skull (which had been given to [Peggy] by her mother and was used as a planter).”

Two thoughts:

  1. WHAT? Who uses a SKULL as a planter? That’s morbid and weird even by my standards.
  2. Are they 100% sure the skull was the one used as a planter? I hope they didn’t just assume that and fail to check to see if it was Bernard’s or Peggy’s skull.

19 thoughts on “This gave me a double take

  1. Mischa August 4, 2018 / 5:57 pm

    Tomorrow I ask my mom if can have a skull as a birthday present. The day after tomorrow you’ll see me put up for adoption or admitted to a mental institution.

    • Meaghan August 4, 2018 / 6:17 pm

      Back in the day, soldiers used to bring home shrunken heads and skulls and other body parts from the enemy as souvenirs. They might have been doing that as recently as the Vietnam War, though I’m pretty sure it’s a crime now.

  2. fluttergirl August 4, 2018 / 6:18 pm

    When I was a kid, maybe 11 years old, I knew an elderly person who had a human skull cap that had been used as an ashtray for generations. I was told it had come from a family slave and it was an heirloom. It was named after the slave, although I don’t recall the name. People are fucked up.

  3. Amanda August 5, 2018 / 1:16 am

    http://charleyproject.org/case/jerome-thomas This man is listed as being missing since March 2, 2006, but in the “details of disappearance” his date of disappearance is listed as November 17, 2008. Which is the correct date?

    • Meaghan August 5, 2018 / 1:17 am

      I’ll check it. Probably it’s an error.

  4. Liz August 5, 2018 / 1:51 pm

    It could be something to do with “memento mori”, where people use the skull as a way of meditating on their eventual and inevitable death. It’s a spiritual exercise meant to cultivate detachment from this world and a constant awareness of the afterlife.

    As to why she was using it as a planter, maybe that was her spirituality, or maybe it was like people wearing, say, a crucifix as a fashion statement rather than as a religious symbol. She might not have taken it too seriously.

  5. Alice August 5, 2018 / 5:49 pm

    Was it a human skull?

    • JustinChristoph August 5, 2018 / 6:17 pm

      Yeah, that was my question after I re-read this. It doesn’t say if it was human or not.

  6. marsyao August 5, 2018 / 9:13 pm

    Checking Kristy Thomas’s Facebook page,in her posts, she repeatably said she miss her son and her family, she was obviously estranged from her family, I wonder why ? I checked Facebook pages of her family, her mother never even mention she was missing in her Facebook pages, her brother, sister and aunt only mention her missing once or twice, and there was few following up, it is cold and so sad, is there someone who really care this girl? In one of her aunt’s post saying ‘this is my niece kristy Thomas aka lil bit. she was last seen Tuesday 6-23-15 in east Cleveland. we are very worried about her” from her alias, I wonder how she made her living

    • Meaghan August 5, 2018 / 9:15 pm

      I wondered that myself. I’ve suggested that Ed Dentzel of the Unfound podcast contact Kristy’s sister and see if he can produce an episode about her disappearance. If Kristy’s sister agrees a lot more will become known.

      • marsyao August 5, 2018 / 9:31 pm

        I wonder how close a relationship between her sister and her, her sister only posted one or two posts around the anniversary.

      • Meaghan August 5, 2018 / 9:32 pm

        I am not close to any of my siblings. If any went missing I’m not sure how much I would talk about it in my day to day life. But I would still care deeply.

      • marsyao August 5, 2018 / 9:39 pm

        Of course Meaghan, people has different reaction to this kind of cases, but I may just hope she could receive the same attention, say like another missing girl Brooklyn Peck(https://www.facebook.com/brooklyn.peck.18) who was estranged from her family, I may ask too much

  7. marsyao August 5, 2018 / 9:35 pm

    It’s time to share this again! My sister went missing in the Cleveland area June 2015. It has been way too long since any of us seen her, or had any type of contact. It is not normal for us not to hear from her so we know something bad happened. We know that someone was looking for her, we just don’t know who. The only information we have, is that her purse was found inside of a stolen vehicle(a woman named teresa, took it). That’s it. Nothing more. Our family begs anyone with information to please come forward. We want answers to all of our questions, but the main one we want to know.. where is my sister? Dead or alive, we have to know.

    From her sister’s post on Jun 14 2017, among some of happy posts

    • Meaghan August 5, 2018 / 9:35 pm

      Yes, I saw that post.

    • marsyao August 5, 2018 / 11:49 pm

      I take back whatever I said about her sister after I read her recently posts on her facebook pages,glad at least one family member cares about her.

  8. Vision Jinx August 6, 2018 / 12:13 am

    This is unrelated to this skull story, (how could it be used as a planter btw? Through the mouth and eye sockets!?)

    I found this very detailed article on the disappearance of the Westerfield brothers missing from NC in 1964. It has a picture of the boys I haven’t seen. It also gives a backstory to the step-father’s and mother’s relationship. The stepfather also randomly showed up at her house and asked the babysitter she hired to leave, which is a surprising detail I haven’t seen yet. And lastly, it has the name of the double feature films they were said to have went to see.

    http://www.fayobserver.com/news/20180805/two-fayetteville-boys-went-to-movie-in-1964-they-were-never-seen-again

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