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Dumped in cellar hole 50 years ago, badly burned body has never been identified

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A small gravestone at Fairview Cemetery in Westford marking the spot where the unidentified man was laid to rest in 1973.

The Boston Globe, October 2023

On Jan. 23, 1973, a man interested in buying real estate was checking out property in Westford when he made a gruesome discovery. As he took a closer look at the foundation of what was once a barn or farmhouse on Howard Road, he found a man’s body inside a cellar hole. The victim was a Blackman in his 20s, dressed in blue denim pants and a sleeveless printed shirt. He was shoeless and his body was burned.

Police speculated that he had been killed somewhere else and dumped there. The body had apparently been there for at least four days. Fifty years later, the man has never been identified and no one has been brought to justice. He was buried in Fairview Cemetery in Westford, his grave marked by a tiny square-shaped stone with the number 9 carved into it.

Police in Westford say the investigation remains open but will reveal little about what steps have been taken or if they’ve been able to obtain any DNA from the victim’s remains.

Continue reading at The Boston Globe.

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