Alibi V.24 No.44 • Oct 29-Nov 4, 2015 

Newscity

Stolen Headstones Returned to Cemetery, Dianna Duran Pleads Guilty and a New National Park is Born

Head Trip

It’s not unusual for people to claim that souls can wander after death, but it’s far rarer to hear the same said about headstones. But that’s just what happened to two markers from Albuquerque’s Historic Fairview Cemetery that somehow wound up in an outdoor police evidence lot in Scottsdale, Ariz.

According to Susan Schwartz, historian at HFC, the headstones marked the graves of two women who died well over a century ago: Nellie Hoover, a 16-year old who died of tuberculosis in 1902, and Celia Morgan, a school teacher who passed away from fever in 1890. Schwartz says their stones disappeared from the cemetery at least 15 years ago. There is no record as to when or why the markers were taken into the Scottsdale evidence lot, but when police officer Gessica Boone recently found them she decided to research the names on the headstones, which led her to Fairview.

After discovering the headstones’ original location, Officer Boone and her husband, Sgt. Eric Boone, drove them to Fairview where they were returned on Oct. 15.

“We are so amazed at the dedication of the two officers to search out the home of the markers and then to drive them to Albuquerque,” said Schwartz.

Dianna Duran Takes the Plea

Dianna Duran resigned her position as Secretary of State on Friday, Oct. 23. Not only that, but the embattled politician, who faced 65 counts of criminal charges related to her misuse of campaign funds, pleaded guilty to six of those counts, including two felonies. According to the Attorney General’s recommendations, in exchange for the plea and her resignation, Duran, a Republican, will face no jail time and will retain her pension. However, she will have to make full restitution of up to $14,000 of campaign donations and will serve five years of supervised probation. The judge can accept or reject these recommendations at sentencing in December, though Duran can withraw her guilty plea if the terms are changed.

A Little Piece of Manhattan

A new National Park is coming to New Mexico, but this one is unique in that it will be spread over three different states. The Manhattan Project National Historical Park will encompass three sites: at Los Alamos, N.M., Oakridge, Tenn., and Hanford, Wash. Each of these locations played a pivotal role in the creation of the atomic bomb, with New Mexico’s Los Alamos serving as the “brain trust” of scientists and technicians who worked to develop the theoretical framework and designs that would allow a weaponized fission reaction to take place.

The park will be officially established on Nov. 10 of this year with a signing ceremony in Washington, D.C.