Almost lost on page 16A of the November 2, 2011 issue of "The Oklahoman", Oklahoma City's daily paper, is a brief story about the murder of Kelsey Bransby.
Police have announced that she died of a gun shot wound to the face. In addition the paper noted Ms. Bransby dropped out of Mustang High School five months before she was to graduate in the same class as did the equally ill fated Carina Saunders. The Oklahoman did not reconcile an earlier report that Ms. Bransby was a student at Oklahoma City Community College. OCCC, while not as academically challenging as say, Duke, or Harvard, presumably does require its incoming students to have a high school diploma.
Obviously The Oklahoman was given poor information that it didn't attempt to verify, thus proving once again that outside the sports department it cannot be trusted as a news source. Be that as it may, the coincidence of these two former classmates falling victim to brutal crimes within a couple of weeks of each other still stretches all actuary odds.
At this point the state medical examiner's office, itself under investigation for bribery and abject cronyism, has yet to release the official cause of death in the Saunders' case. I'm no expert, but I'd hazard a guess that the whole decapitation, dismemberment thing played a part in it. However it maybe that Ms. Saunders was all ready dead before the long knives came out. At least, in some dark fashion, we can hope so.
The minor mystery in all this is that why after the sensational and nearly lurid headlines in the Saunders' affair is the that the Bransby murder been relegated to the back pages with only the sort of yawning mention that is usually reserved for the homeless. There have been no interviews with grieving family, no in depth statements by investigators. It would seem there is a conscious effort by police and or media to keep this killing below the public radar and utterly separate from the Saunders' horror.
And the truth is they might be separate. Just a terrible and unlikely coincidence. A gruesome million to one shot that will keep us all wondering about the whims of fate for the next few years.
The terrible fact right now is that despite being in the same high school class, looking hauntingly alike, and having pages on facebook, the only acknowledged connection here is that the police in both cases have no clue as to who did it. Nor do they have the slightest idea why.
Suddenly year book photos and social network pages seem a bit more shadowy than they ever should be. Who knows what sort of deranged beasts are sifting through them at this very moment.
It appears Warhol was right. And so was Morrison. Everyone will be famous and the killer is indeed on the road.