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Deadly Tales of the Grand Canyon / Open Lines

Date Friday - December 28, 2018
Host Ian Punnett
Guests Michael GhiglieriOpen Lines

The Grand Canyon is one of the most beautiful places on planet Earth - and it's also one of the deadliest. Grand Canyon expert Michael Ghiglieri joined Ian Punnett in the first half to discuss gripping accounts of premeditated murders as well as fatal mishaps in the most famous of the world's Seven Natural Wonders. Ghiglieri remarked that the Canyon is one of the best places to plan a murder because "there are no witnesses and so many places that bad things can happen" that often, no one ever finds out about them. One of the first deaths in the Canyon was discovered by a hiker who found human bones buried next to a trail. Ghiglieri said that forensic investigators noticed an arrowhead "right in the center of this guy’s chest cavity" and deduced that the body was at least 900 years old and likely a member of an ancient tribe.

Ghiglieri also recounted the story of John Spangler, a terrifying serial murderer who killed his third wife on a 1993 Easter Sunday hike by pushing her off of an overlook 160 feet to her death. He was at first believed when he reported it as an accident. Another incident involved a Japanese tourist who was found stabbed to death in 2006 after her killer offered to join the search party, which eventually led to his conviction. Ghiglieri said that during the height of the season, "there could easily be 400 other tourists and 500 native Americans" in that area of the park and the suspect pool is large. Many deaths, he said, also happen when tourists are taking photos or selfies near the edge after ignoring signs or climbing over guard rails.

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Open Lines followed in the second half. Tim called in from Arkansas to ask Ian if he had heard about the findings of "Egyptian artifacts" in the Grand Canyon. Sky in New Mexico wondered if, with all the photos taken in national parks, if there might be "an increase in documentation of UFOs" in the Canyon. Michael in Virginia detailed his view of miracles of the Bible as advanced technology, to which Ian reacted by stating his belief that grounding the Bible in a scientific viewpoint is a mistake. Another Michael called from Kansas with his experience of seeing "spiderwebs" falling from the sky and his concern that it may have something to do with the "chemtrail" phenomenon.

Joe in New York said he believes that disappearances and deaths in National Parks are not surprising because "people are not familiar with the conditions and they’re overconfident to a degree, and they make mistakes." Environmental pollution watchdog "Toxic Reverend" called in to report that "thousands of cities in America have higher levels" of lead and other pollutants than the notorious water contamination in Flint, Michigan. Max in California told Ian about his concern over suspected aerial spraying and the "checkerboard patterns in the sky" over his home in Lake Tahoe. Daniel from Kansas asked how truth can be determined in these times. Ian (who teaches communication in college) replied that he sees truth as “facts over time.”

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