I’d like to tell you my story.
Unfortunately, I can’t remember my story; you don’t really know a whole lot when you are dead. I can only tell you what the police who found me and the coroner who examined me have told others about me. I think that I was about nineteen years old when I died. The coroner says that I was between sixteen and twenty one; so, I just shoot for somewhere in between.
The police found the van that I was riding in around 1:30 a.m. on June 26, 1995 on highway 58 near Emporia, Virginia. I was not wearing my seat belt, and riding in the passenger’s seat (that’ll teach me.) The driver, who had picked me up, was killed also. No drugs were found in his or my body, for the critics out there. They pulled my mangled body from the van and immediately began searching my person for identification. They only found two concert tickets, from the June 24th and 25th, 1995 Grateful Dead shows (RFK Stadium in Washington D.C.), a yellow BIC lighter, one dollar in change (4 quarters), and a curious note that read, “Jason, sorry we had to go, see ya around call me (no area code) #914-xxxx (the authorities have not released the last four digits) Caroline T and Caroline O. Bye!!!!!”
They did not know how true that, “Bye,” was.
The authorities called the driver’s parents to come identify his body; he was on the way home to South Carolina and had not attended either show, that’s why they presume that he picked me up as a hitchhiker. His parents examined my body as well; they didn’t know me.
The coroner says that I was 5’8” with naturally sandy blonde/brown hair that had been dyed red. I was wearing a Grateful Dead 1995 tie-dyed tour t-shirt, light blue Levi’s 505 jeans, dark blue Fila sneakers, and two necklaces (one beaded and the other hemp macramé). I had a “home done” 5-point star tattoo on my left forearm.
I’m not sure if I was heading home or to a friend’s house. I wasn’t heading in the direction of the next show. The band was heading west.
The coroner made a remark that I think might be of import. He said that I had all of my teeth and they were perfect. This makes me think that I wasn’t on the road for very long. I must have come from a fairly decent family.
If I could, I would plead with you to tell my story. I can’t.
Jason ‘Grateful’ Doe
P.S. To find out more about me, go to http://doenetwork.org/cases/127umva.html