Once again, another young man has been found deceased in a nearby lake. It has become such a common occurrence that when I hear that a young man was last seen at a bar, I know that in about a week they will find him in a nearby lake or river.
What this post below:
Martin Gutierrez is the latest case. Martin was with a group of friends in downtown Austin. He was in a very busy area that is frequented by young professionals. He walks off while talking on the phone and goes missing, The family, friends, and authorities search and search. Martin’s phone went dead shortly after his last phone call and, other than the video that shows him leaving a bar, there is no clues where he is. His body was found in Lady Bird Lake, a week later. Martin had no history of depression, was only seen having one drink, but for some inexplicable reason, he ends up drowned in a lake about a 30 minute walk from the bar. Why?
Mark and I began theorizing on this subject, and he brought up a point: “When you and I were young, you knew what the drugs were out there. You had Meth, Cocaine, Marijuana. Whenever you did it, you knew what to expect, but now there are all kinds of new designer drugs that you don’t know what it might do to you.”
I thought back about bath salts and how some people would get a reaction where they would go into a trance and attack and bite people, leading to them acting like they were cast members from the Walking Dead. Instead of getting wired up, because of the manufacturing or the chemical makeup of the person taking the drug, they reacted in such a bizarre way, that it made national news. More and more cases were happening and either it was the way that the drug was made or the way it reacting with some people that turned them into monsters.
But, is there a drug that can cause men, and it seems to be just men, to walk to the nearest lake and jump in and let themselves drown?
Elias has a blog, Boston’s Mysterious Vanishings where she outlines this subject of men who disappear and are found deceased in the water. So, far, this is the list of men that Elias has done research on.
John Daverio (49) 3/2003
Dustin Willis (26) 3/2007
William Hurley (24) 10/2009
Eugene Losik (26) 2/2010
David Mark (24) 2/2011
Franco Garcia (21) 2/2012
Jonathan Dailey (23) 10/2012
Eric Munsell (24) 2/2014
Josue Quispe (18) 10/2015
Dennis Njoroge (21) 11/2015
Zachary Marr (22) 2/2016
This is a lot, but averages out to about one a year found in the water.
From working on missing people cases for so many years, I know that Boston is not the only place where this is occurring. I see reports all over the U.S. and it goes hand in hand with the reports that the person was last seen at a bar. It is all over the U.S., but not specific to one area like Boston’s Mysterious Vanishings is researching.
The United Kingdom is also aware that many of their young men are found in water. According to their research, in 2010, “12 men went missing on a night out who were found dead in water.” All of these people were seen leaving a bar.
There is no hard statistics being taken on this and in fact it is a difficult thing to track. For example, there is no record of how many men are perishing each year in the water, let alone the reason why, i.e., alcohol, drugs or sober. Just like there is no record of how many men go out, drink at a bar and make it home safely.
If doing the research showed that one or two men perish in water after a night out on the town out of 1,000 men that made it home safely then the risk is very low. In other words, going to a bar will not increase your chances of ending up in the water later. But, if it is 4-5 men per 1,000 then the risk is high. Even if we were to generalize it even more and said, 4-5 men are found deceased in water – per 1,000 men that went out for the night and returned safely, is that number still high? How many people do actually perish each night in a city? Looking at a coroner’s report in Austin, Texas, it shows that an average of 1-2 people die each day.
One case that always comes up when this topic is mentioned is the Smiley Face Killer. (The name comes from the symbol that was found near where the drowned victim was found.) Kevin Gannon and Anthony Duarte, two New York Detectives noticed that a number of young men were being found dead in bodies of water across eleven states. They noticed that the men were often leaving parties or bars. Their conclusion is that these men did not accidentally drown, but were victims of a serial killer or killers.
What I did realize is that the more you research and try to find answers the more questions come up. The biggest question is, we really don’t know why these men ending up in the water in the first place. That reason alone is enough of a motivation to delve deeper into the subject, but as I pointed out earlier, the stats would have to be very large for it to prove that there is actually a phenomenon.
Maybe the city will consider putting up cameras along their city waterways so the circumstances leading up to why a person goes from dry land into the water will be solved. Cameras on the waters edge would certainly help to solve this mystery, and would at least help SAR know where to look for someone. To take it a step farther, if the cameras were live it could even save someone’s life.