Today there was a flurry of activity at the lab. We continued our work on skeletal analyses in the midst of many visitors. There were news crews from Corpus Christie and msnbc. They punctuated our work with questions and the clicks of their cameras. But our hope is they will bring more awareness to the issues we face in identifying these individuals. This awareness may lead to funding, which is desperately needed for this work to progress faster. It may also lead to a better understanding of the amount of work, organization and collaboration that go into the identification efforts. In addition to the media presence we had another visitor today, Deputy Don White from the Brooks County Sheriff Department. We used our time with the visitors to teach as much as we could about the process. We showed them what we were doing at every step and answered all of their questions. The Corpus Christi Caller Times spent the entire day at the lab learning the different techniques we use to construct a biological profile, meeting with each task force and really trying to understand our efforts before writing about it.
Deputy Don sat at the analysis table with the UIndy team the whole day. He asked great questions and helped us at every opportunity. He shared stories of his recovery experiences and wanted to use his time at the lab to inform him when he goes on recoveries at the ranches in Brooks County. He looked to see which bones and which features we used to address different questions about the individual. He also provided us the opportunity to ask questions about the recoveries, the process he uses and the environment where the recoveries are taking place. That information helps us better understand some of the patterns we are seeing regarding the bones. It was another great day of collaboration and team effort. As we were nearing the completion of our 7th case for the week, it started to storm. Since the ranch road leading to the lab is prone to flooding we were asked to pack everything up and head out for the day. But the camaraderie was already is full swing, so Don and Dr. Spradley joined us for dinner to continue the conversations about how we can work together as a team during this humanitarian crisis. We took Amanda for her fist visit to Torchy’s Tacos. It was a good way to end a really productive day!