The excavators were digging a trench at Stephanie Cartwright Square in Water Street in Guilford to modernize the power system. That’s when Zach Herrick and his crew found something they hadn’t expected: human remains.
The skulls and bones of two people were eventually discovered, but authorities found it to be an ancient grave site and not an existing crime scene.
“One of our jobs is digging graves for the city.” Herrick, who owns Herrick Construction Inc. in Abbott, said, “We get paid to bury them, and now we get money to back up.”
Herrick noted that the ancient power system was only three feet from the graves.
“So, even though many years ago [they put in the old energy system], they missed three feet,” Herrick said.
Workers from B. Washburn Electric, a Dover-Foxcroft company, were also working on the project when the bones were first discovered earlier this month.
“Everyone shook a little,” said Todd Lyford, Vice President of Piscatiques County.
“We believe a cemetery was moved due to the construction of a road, but these graves have not been moved,” Lyford said. We did not find any records of a cemetery, but it may have been an old family cemetery. Hand exchange, families die or turn away. “
For Lyford, who has been in the law enforcement business for more than 30 years, this was his first.
“It’s very unusual, but according to the coroner, it’s not as rare as we think,” said Lyford.
He added that he was relieved that this was not the result of the Haditha murder.
“When we are called into those, we first have to treat it as a potential crime scene so we can safely dismiss it. These were probably six feet and we also found coffin fragments so we quickly ruled out that it was a crime scene,” said Lyford.
The medical examiner was contacted in Augusta and the examiner communicated with Dr. Marcela Sorge, a research professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Maine. Sorge is also a consultant forensic anthropologist in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Rhode Island.
Sorge said the two bodies were middle-aged men and the cemetery was moved in the late 1950s or 1960s, but the graves are much older.
“Often times, cities need to move graves and when that happens, things like this can happen,” said Sorge. “The other thing that happens is that there are a lot of unmarked family cemeteries. As people use the land and build houses and roads change, you bring these unmarked graves. There are no monuments [to distinguish them]. He is totally innocent.”
Surge said that the remains are in a funeral home and the goal is to “re-burial them in a suitable location.”