Thursday, February 12, 2009

Caylee Makeshift Memorial

On the day of Caylee's memorial service at the First Baptist Church, an alternate memorial was being organized by Leonard Padilla, a California bounty hunter, at the site where Caylee's remains were found. Padilla was banned from attending the service at the church by Cindy and George Anthony. Padilla had posted bond for Casey Anthony, Caylee's mother, but later revoked it saying that Casey was not cooperating the the search for her child.
For some reason I felt ill at ease as I approached the site. This huge pile of toys, cards, flowers and signs decorated the area. The woods where Caylee's body was found were stripped bare and all the refuge was heaved into a compost pile about five feet high. Already a few palmettos were sprouting back up to reclaim the crime scene.
An elementary school is just a half block from where I was sketching. School let out and a large group of about 12 students were walking home on the opposite side of the street. They became curious as to what I was sketching and surrounded me and fired off a barrage of questions. Some of them went up to a board and wrote condolences and thoughts. One of the youngest pointed at my sketch and asked, "Is that Caylee?" Some of the kids wanted to pose for me in front of the toys, but I convinced them that they should get home to there moms. One couple who visited the site informed me that they had driven from Pennsylvania to pay there respects. Several times people getting out of there cars asked me if it was alright to take pictures. It is as if they thought it was my job to guard the site. As one man said, "A picture is worth a thousand words."

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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