Posted 04-07-2002 at 18:52:47
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Better look at this:
Mysterious Death of Migrant Farmworkers Explained
Sheriff Carl Fredericks, of Needlebush California, a small farming community just north of San Diego, narrowly averted death last week. He was admitted to the hospital with uncontrollable muscle spasms, drooling, and vomiting.
Fredericks life was saved when a sharp young resident asked for an extended toxicology screen. Imagine the resident's shock when the pattern on the hematological gas spectrograph showed spikes in the cyano-mylenic region. [Cyano myelines are organic chemicals used to make insecticides.]
Carefully reviewing his activities over the last few days, they discovered that he had been the investigating officer in the odd death of the Himacho family, migrant farm workers living in Needlebush. Federal agents, from the antiterrorist division of the FBI, immediately order exhumation of the bodies of the the entire family.
The toxicology reports on the Himachos matched those of Frederick's. A careful study of the Himacho family's home was inconclusive, but an inquisitive investigator was attracted to an unusual 'tire planter'. Obviously meant to be decorative, the planter contained enriched soil and a rare South American orchid. (An unusual find for such poor farm laborers.) An odd smell from the tire, and a sense of caution warned off the investigator, who brought the tire in for investigation.
By now it was not a surprise to anyone that the investigator also became ill.
Laboratory studies showed that the tire was coated with insecticide, not unusual for tires driven on roads in a farming community. What was unusual was that the rubber in the tire was breaking down. Between the enriched soil for the orchid, the bright Southern California sunlight, and (ugh) cat urine, the tire decomposed, and combined with the insecticide to form a deadly myle-synaptic poison.
Thanks to an alert medical resident, the deputy and the investigator survived, the mystery was solved, and the warning went out to avoid making planters out of tires driven on local roads.
Dateline Needlebush - April 5, 2002