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Subject:  Mesa cemetary Date:  7/29/2013  1:13 AM
Author:  salaryguru Number:  50916 of 58870

This is the time of year when I spend a lot of time in the house in the air conditioning. It's really hot out there. I get out early to ride my bike and I mow the lawn periodically, but I still get a little stir crazy. SGSpouse and I have gone to a couple of Diamondback baseball games. This is a nice diversion because you can hike around the stadium which feels like being outside, but the stadium is air conditioned. Last week we went to a Sangria tasting event at a nearby olive mill that makes and sells their own olive oil.

Anyway, I recently learned about the City of Mesa Cemetery. It is kind of interesting. The cemetery was established in 1891. It includes graves for many of the city founders. Since they were Mormon, some of them had multiple wives and several have very elaborate headstones. Since I've lived here for awhile and know a little bit about the city history, that was interesting to me. But the surprises were the graves of Ernesto Miranda (the guy that Miranda rights are named after) and Waylon Jennings.

I had never read the Miranda story before this visit. It would be funny if it weren't true. Miranda was a fairly shady character - in and out of jail from the time he was in 8th grade. At some point he confessed to kidnapping and raping a girl and was convicted based on his confession. After a long string of appeals that outlived his attorney, he was let off because he had not been advised of his rights - even though the paper he wrote his confession on included a statement across the top of every page that stated he was confessing of his own free will without coercion or promises and that he understood that everything he wrote could and would be used against him in court. So Arizona re-tried him without the confession and convicted him again, sentencing him to 20 to 30 years. He eventually got out on parole, violated his parole and went back to jail, then finally got out again only to be killed of a knife wound in an Arizona bar fight.

The Waylon Jennings story is equally sad for different reasons. Jennings was a diabetic with cocaine addiction problems and a six-pack a day smoker. He finally quit the cocaine and smoking, but the diabetes got him.

It's kind of strange finding this cemetery with these somewhat famous people only about 4 miles from home. It was a good diversion on a hot day.
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