Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Tara Calico: An Unsolved Missing Person Mystery

by Chris Chaos

Tara Leigh Calico was born February 28, 1969 and mysteriously disappeared on September 20, 1988 at the age of 19 near her home in Belen, New Mexico. Her case was extensively shown on A Current Affair, Unsolved Mysteries, America's Most Wanted, The Oprah Winfrey Show and also 48 Hours. Although still unsolved, most came to the conclusion that she was kidnapped.

Tara left about 9:30am on September 20th, 1988 for a bike ride and never returned. Patty Doel, Tara's mother began searching for her along her bike route when she failed to return home at noon like she stated that she would. After failing to find Tara, she contacted the police. In the search, police found her walkman and cassette tapes along her bike route. A handful of people did see Tara riding her bike and her bike also was never found. No witnesses ever came forward with any eyewitness accounts of her possibly being kidnapped but some did state that a 1953-54 Ford pickup was following her. This is all circumstantial and the pickup truck was never located either.

On June 15th of 1989 a Polaroid photo was found in a parking lot in Port St. Joe, Florida with two unidentified people in it, a young male (who appears to have minor bruising around his neck) and an older female thought to be Tara. Both the male and female portrayed in the photo were bound and gagged appearing to be sitting on a bed together. Many thought the the female in the photo was Tara and the boy was Michael Henley, also of New Mexico, who disappeared in April of 1988. Investigators of the case placed the time of the picture taken was after May of 1989 since that particular film was not available to the public until that time. Police state that it could not have been Michael since his remains were discovered back in 1990 in the Zuni Mountains which is about 7 miles from the campsite that he disappeared from and 75 miles from where Tara disappeared. Police speculate that Michael must have gotten lost in the mountains and died of exposure.

Patty, Tara's mother, does believe that it is Tara in the photo due to the scar on her leg which Tara acquired in a car accident. Also V.C. Andrews' My Sweet Audrina, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Sweet_Audrina) which was Tara's favorite book, appeared in the photograph. Further analysis of the photo came back with mixed results. Scotland Yard stated that the woman in the photo was indeed Tara, the Los Alamos National Laboratory stated that it was not and the FBI claimed that it was inconclusive.

Over the years supposedly two other Polaroid photos surface of Tara, but they have not been released to the public. In 1988 and 1989 there were several supposed sightings of Tara in the southern United States but nothing confirmed or proven.

In later years, about 20 years after Tara disappeared the Sheriff of Valencia County, Rene Rivera, stated that he knew what occurred to Tara. Rivera claims that two schoolmates followed her in a pickup truck and an accident occurred causing her death. The two boys then covered up the crime and the rest is history. Knowing the names of the people involved, Rivera states that without a body, a case cannot be made. No evidence supporting this conclusion has ever been released. There has never been an arrest made and the case is still open. John Doel, Tara's stepfather disputes these claims made by Rivera stating that these claims should not have been made if he was not able to arrest anyone. He also contends that strong circumstantial evidence should be enough for an arrest.

The girl in the photo is wearing an Egghead Software T-Shirt.

There has been much speculation as to what happened to Tara and what the source of this photo is. Some think that the photo has nothing to do with Tara ans was totally unrelated. Possibly kids playing around with a camera in mock kidnapping scenarios. Police state that the photo was taken inside a white van. The white van which has been the source of many jokes concerning pedophiles is very likely since they can have no windows and provide room for deviant sexual acts. Others state that during this time frame and area white children were being kidnapped in droves and being prostituted at truck stops. Supposedly the other photos of Tara turned up in California and hinted at pornography.

Also the two people in the photo do not appear to be terrified as you would expect being bound and gagged in the back of a van. More so the girl appears to be bored and the boy simply tired. You can see the tape over their mouths but can only assume that their hands are tied or bound behind them. Also if they were abducted and being held against their will, why would the girl be allowed to read her favorite book. She would also need her hands free to read it. Why would the photo be left in the parking lot, sounds like an amateur mistake going against the alleged abductor going undetected for all these years. Also based on previous abductions, MOST abductors stick to a certain profile, they hardly ever abduct children/people of different ages or sexes.

An excellent video on the topic by Alana G:
Tara Calico Video

(Chris Chaos is a long time resident of South Jersey who once again resides in and writes from Gloucester City, New Jersey. He is a filmmaker, a business owner, writer, urban explorer and investigator of the odd and weird, a proud parent, happily taken and a connoisseur of hot wings. Chris can be reached at AxisVideo@aol.com)

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Edward Mordrake: The Man with Two Faces

by Chris Chaos

 A well disputed case concerning Edward Mordake or Edward Mordrake was a documented fact but embellished with fictional tall tales as do most people from histories past. Edward was a doubtful heir to English peerage who was the source of these legends. It appears that he may have suffered from a form of diprosopus (craniofacial duplication, is an extremely rare congenital disorder whereby parts or all of the face are duplicated on the head). According to writings of the time period, they stated that an extra face was attached to the back of his head. This second face could not eat or speak out loud but was allegedly credited with the abilities to laugh and cry. Claiming that his demon face whispered to him at night, Edward begged to have it removed, but no doctors would even try. Sadly, when Edward was 23 years old, he committed suicide.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Fear of the Dark: Nyctophobia

by Chris Chaos

Dictionary.com defines fear as: a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.

The Dark...why are so many afraid of it? Many children fear going to bed due to the dark and need to have a night light left on. Some adults even experience this fear of the dark. The dark symbolizes the unknown and it conceals what MIGHT be there. Some of the greatest and most widespread fears to man is of the unknown. The darkness provides the perfect cover and cloak for the imagination to run wild. Could a monster be lurking under the bed or in the closet? Could a robber or rapist be hiding in the darkness of the parking garage?

Fear of the dark is not totally irrational, it is inbred into us, it protected our ancestors from the unseen dangers of the night, wolves, venomous snakes and spiders...cliffs. Usually the fear of the dark presents itself after the age of two. When rational fear becomes irrational and impairs a person it is called achluophobia, nyctophobia (from the Greek "night"), scotophobia ("darkness"), or lygophobia ("twilight").

Sigmund Freud considered the fear of the dark as separation anxiety disorder.
CLICK: Sigmund Freud

Many movies up the scare by making the scary parts take place at night, in dimly lit areas and also during rainy thunder storms.

Many scientists try to understand and isolate what causes fear and conducted many experiments. One such experiment took place in the 1960's and used rats, which are naturally nocturnal, to look for a molecule responsible for memory. The test rats were conditioned to fear the dark and the claim was that "scotophobin" (http://www.yourdictionary.com/scotophobin) was extracted from these rats and injected into unconditioned rats (transferring fear) proving that memory was chemical based. There is much debate concerning this and other experiments claimed to have debunked this experiment.

As a child becomes an adult and learns that there are no such things as monsters, part of the irrational fears of the dark diminish as the adult becomes acclimated to the concept of the dark. This holds true in known areas such as the house, but rational and real fears still linger, such as an attacker in a dark parking garage. Real dangers can present themselves in the dark and some take advantage of this fact.

The Process of Fear:

1) The thalamus collects sensory data from the senses
2) Sensory cortex receives data from thalamus and interprets it
3) Sensory cortex organizes information for dissemination to hypothalamus (fight or flight), amygdala (fear), hippocampus (memory)

(Chris Chaos is a long time resident of South Jersey who once again resides in and writes from Gloucester City, New Jersey. He is a filmmaker, a business owner, writer, urban explorer and investigator of the odd and weird, a proud parent, happily taken and a connoisseur of hot wings. Chris can be reached at AxisVideo@aol.com)

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Raymond Robinson (The Green Man)

by Chris Chaos

Mr. Ray Robinson was born in Pennsylvania on October 29th, 1910 and was also known as The Green Man and Charlie No-Face. When Robinson was eight years old he was attempting to view a bird's nest when he was severely injured and disfigured by an electrical line on the Morado Bridge. A year earlier a boy was killed on the same bridge which carries a trolley with electrical lines of 1,200 and 22,000 volts.

Despite doctor's expectations, Robinson survived but lost both his eyes, nose, one ear and his arm leaving him severely disfigured.

Ray, a resident of Koppel, became an urban legend when he went out for his late night walks on State Route 351 feeling his way around with a walking stick.. He chose the later timed walks to prevent a panic when he ventured out into public due to his appearance. Many people feared his disfigured appearance and created stories about him. Other local residents gathered and drove along the road that he lived on in the hopes of meeting him face to face. Many thought that these tales about Charlie No-Face were just legends and were very surprised when they found out that they were real and many locals liked Robinson. He was hit by cars several times on his nightly walks, but nothing was going to stop him from doing what he wanted to do.

Robinson became a local myth in the Pittsburgh area, and his real story was obscured by urban legend. In the stories, he was the Green Man, an employee of a power company who was hit by a downed power line or struck by lightning, after which he died or hid in an abandoned house. To the disfigurement Robinson suffered in reality, legend added an open hole in one cheek and glowing green skin. Through several generations, Robinson's story has been passed on so many times that his name and his real history have been overshadowed by the ghost story that grew out of them.

He was very productive and passed his time by making doormats, wallets and belts that he would sell. Robinson usually hid from the public's eye, but on occasion he was known to pause for a photo in exchange for a beer or cigarette.

He stopped his walks during the last years of his life, and retired to the Beaver County Geriatric Center, where he died  June 11th 1985 at the age of 74.

(Chris Chaos is a long time resident of South Jersey who once again resides in and writes from Gloucester City, New Jersey. He is a filmmaker, a business owner, writer, urban explorer and investigator of the odd and weird, a proud parent, happily taken and a connoisseur of hot wings. Chris can be reached at AxisVideo@aol.com)