• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

In all seriousness, what does a body look like after being soaked for 43 years?

shortylickens

No Lifer
Jul 15, 2003
80,281
13,090
126
Or for that matter, a car?




I read various news sites and not one report can tell me specifically how they know it is this woman. Seems they are guessing based on the car ID.
 

kage69

Lifer
Jul 17, 2003
19,518
13,152
136
Depends on the water temp. A lake in New Hampshire? That body will look like a skeleton.

A couple Lake Superior wrecks still have bodies in them. Decidedly not skeletons.
 

A///

Golden Member
Feb 24, 2017
1,026
750
136
They can determine the gender from a skeleton.
Yep. From what I recall in biology, a trained eye can figure gender in a matter of seconds based on hip size and angle among other things in the spinal and pelvic area. Shoulders/clavicle too, IIRC.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Pohemi420

Pohemi420

Diamond Member
Oct 2, 2004
4,456
1,894
136
I never said they couldnt.

My question was, how did they know for sure it was that specific person.
The article didn't explain that, but...I would guess by comparing her daughter's DNA with that of the corpse. If that weren't possible, by dental records would likely be the first go-to. They didn't exactly have DNA recordkeeping DBs in the 1970s, not sure how else they would match it.

If the woman had no dental records...then I'm not sure how they might ID the body with a high level of certainty, and not leave it to deductive reasoning.

As far as condition of the body after that amount of time submerged...besides water temp and salinity (it was fresh water, obviously) affecting decomposition, it'd also depend on how much water was able to circulate through the interior of the car. If all the windows had been down, it'd be only bones.

The car is likely a cage of rust and glass by now.
 
Last edited:
Feb 4, 2009
31,492
11,883
136
Body Farms exist. People donate their bodies to be left outside or under water or whatever other combination.
People study how the bodies decay.

Spoiler because it is a kind of gross video but don’t be afraid it is from National Geographic HOWEVER you will see dead people.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Pohemi420

ASK THE COMMUNITY