This week I've begun work on an essay about the recent discovery of the bodies of four homeless men at the bottom of a manhole. They were found a couple days apart in manholes near railroad tracks owned by Norfolk Southern Railroad, the same railroad my dad has worked for for 30 plus years. My interest in what the police are calling murders is that I can see the railroad viaduct from the front of our apartment here in South Bend. Police believe that the men were murdered while in the act of "scrapping," a slang term for salvaging scrap metal for money. This past May, amid a rash of house guttings in which copper wire, plumbing and aluminium siding were stolen from abandoned houses and construction sites, South Bend passed an ordinance making scrapping a more serious offense. Click on the title of this post for more on the murders.
Above are pictures I snapped of the area near where the bodies were found. Stay tuned for more and excerpts from the essay.