Summer of '71 Chapter 14

So here we were watching the Vineland/Millville area's finest investigate what appears to be a murder at the Menantico Sand Wash. The sandy soil is making life difficult for the patrolmen and detectives. They slip and slide down the incline towards the body, and several of them lose their footing, and they tumble towards the water's edge. They take photographs and scour the scene for clues, and then they wait for the coroner to arrive.
The coroner is an elderly gentleman with a pronounced limp, and his limp makes it even more difficult for him. He falls once or twice trying to reach the body, and we are trying really hard not to laugh, but by now we all need some comic relief. The coroner finishes his examination, and slowly makes his way up the hill, trying hard to keep his balance.

Now the real fun begins. The cops put the corpse in one of those body bags that we see so often on the evening news when stories about Vietnam are aired. Then they try to carry it up the sandy incline. Well, they slip and slide, and go back for every step they go forwards. They drop the body bag once, then twice, so they stop and try to figure out what to do, all at our amusement. We try really hard not to laugh out loud.

There are two girls riding their horse bareback nearby, so the detectives get a bright idea. They commandeer the horse, which is reluctant to go down the slope, but somehow they manage to coax it down. The poor horse is skittish, and when they try to put the body bag on it, it jumps, so the bag falls off and slides back into the water. They try this one more time, but the horse is having none of it, and it is desperate to break free and return to its owners. The police wisely abandon their efforts. After a while they come up with a solution. Slowly, ever so slowly they crab-walk sideways up the slope, and after a few agonizing minutes they reach the top of the hill and get the body bag into the ambulance. More of them slip and slide their way back to their cars, and then they're gone.

We all break up.

The day is pretty much shot for us by now, so we all agree to call it a day. Our fun in the sun is over, so we pack up and head for home.

In Dave Yurkow's orange VW the jokes and puns about the whole thing are coming fast and furious.

We all cope with what happened in different ways, but the same thoughts are in all of our minds.

What really happened? How did this guy who looks to be the same age as us end up like this?

Two young boys who walked out of the Menantico Sand Wash by the light of the moon a few evenings before knew the answer.