Dead Body Found on Site of Dead Memorial Dr. Condo Complex

If it’s, say, 1980, and you’re trying to get rid of a dead body, burying it at the foundation level of a brand-new condo complex going up over the reported site of an ancient cemetery might sound like a perfect after-offing disposal plan. But in Houston, you never know what’s going to get dug up next. HPD detective Carlos Cardenas tells Chronicle reporter Mike Glenn he doesn’t think the partial skeleton unearthed by construction workers yesterday on the site of the recently demolished Park Memorial Condominiums at 5292 Memorial Dr. (pictured above in a late stage of assisted decomposition) belongs to the native American graveyard reported to have existed there previously.

Forensic testing should give a clearer answer, but the circumstances of the body’s burial appear to tell a story on their own: The human remains were discovered along Chandler St. near Arnold, at the far northeastern corner of the complex, wedged between a retaining wall and a concrete slab that workers were taking out. The body was likely concealed there when the Park Memorial Condos were built, police detectives tell Glenn.

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That would be approximately 31 years ago. But dead-body rumors persisted. “I remember the controversy of the condos being built on top of a graveyard,” a self-described native Houstonian wrote Swamplot last month. “Could that be the reason those buildings failed???” At last report the 5- and 6-story, 372-unit apartment structure JLB Partners is putting up on the Rice Military site was planning to keep the name of the doomed courtyard complex it will be replacing. “Park Memorial Apartments” would seem to fit.

Photos: David Hille

15 Comment

  • This story just gets better and better!

  • Damn … I love a good plot twist!

  • Has anyone talked to the owner that balked on selling out? Suspect #1?

  • Next episode of Bones has just been written…you hear me Fox. This complex just set a new story and a travel location to film.

  • It’s Jimmy Hoffa!

  • Dun, dun, dun, dunnnnnnnnnnnnn

    I wonder who the body belongs to?

  • holy crap it’s 2012 people. are there seriously still people who indian graveyards haunt stuff? jeez get a life. it’s all your head. it’s all about one’s perception. stupid uneducated superstitions….

  • *who think indian graveyards….*

  • @redevelop I don’t think “indian graveyards haunt stuff”, but I DEFINITELY think dead bodies stuck in walls do. I bet THAT was the real reason the complex failed … boo.

  • It’s not that dead people’s ghosts that caused the problems. It’s the fact that a dead body doesn’t not have the same structural characteristics of reinforced concrete.

  • All the missing persons reports from 31 years ago should come out of mothballs now.

    And “between a retaining wall and a concrete slab” doesn’t exactly sound like native American bones. Or an accidental fall.

  • And there’s a boy wandering the neighborhood chanting ‘redrum’.

  • @redevelop: Why does the year matter? People are still people. We didn’t all become magically enlightened at some point before now.

  • Pesci voice: “…I’m funny how, I mean funny like I’m a clown, I amuse you?”

  • The site was formerly (how much I don’t know) a cemetery; or the construction crew either hoffa’d a body, or moved bones they dug up in the late 70′s/early 80..