Monday, August 30, 2010

The Pintada Kid on the Case: A Little Background

The Pintada Kid is a unique New Mexican character who has appeared on this blog before (see the Pintada Kid Stories, Tales of Living History from the Center of New Mexico). He has spent a lot of his life exploring many parts of New Mexico and believes that he knows the location of the murdered tourists in the Heberer-Lorius case.

Before we read about his investigation, I asked him to give us a little background on his own life. Here, as always, in an almost exact transcription of the Kid's own words, is what he had to say:

*****

THE PINTADA KID was born in Pintada, N.M. and he remembers his life going back to when he was 2 or 3 years old. [His family lived in a] two room rock and adobe house which still stands in ruin today. 

As a toddler he used to follow the old people into the hills and dark mesas that surrounded his home while they dug up plants for remedies for different ailments or hunted for food. He remembers going on long walks with his dad and a single shot rifle that his dad would shoot rabbits or jackrabbits with for food. When he killed a jackrabbit his dad would take it home and the Kid's sister, older by a couple of years, would skin the rabbits while the Pintada Kid watched. Sometimes the wind carrying a fluff of fur would float into his face or mouth. After the Rabbit was cleaned the Pintada Kid's mom would cook the meat and make a Red chili stew and that would be everyones' supper.

The Pintada Kid's toy was an old car fan that his dad left lying around in the yard. His dad was a mechanic and this fan was perfect for spinning around but if [he] went off balance it would hit the dirt and scrape his small hands against the dirt, which was very painful. The ants all over the yard were constantly biting him, but the insects and grasshoppers were his toys, and the whole landscape for miles was his playground. 

Because he had quick hands, one of his favorite games was to catch a fly and clap his hands together and daze the fly. Then he would walk up to the wall of his Rock Adobe house and find the biggest spider web he could find and throw the fly on the web. Seconds later a big black spider would come out and start eating the fly or covering it up with its web, which was a fun game for the Pintada Kid, along with following his dad out hunting.

When the Pintada Kid was about 6 years old he moved to Santa Rosa, New Mexico where he was enrolled in Saint Rose Catholic School. At the time he didn't know very much English because all he [had spoken] with the old people was Spanish. However, he managed to make his First Holy Communion in the first grade with the Sisters of Saint Rose, which takes lots of studying and lots of Prayers to Memorize. The First grade is also the time his father died and so the Kid was left with his Mom and two sisters, one younger and one older than him. 

The sisters at the Catholic School were very strict and mean but they were very good teachers and the Pintada Kid made it to Fourth grade which was the year that his mom died in a Bad Car Accident with some other people in the car that went head on into a Semi Truck late at night back in '58 or '59. At the Funeral they didn't show his mom because she was buried with all kinds of other peoples body parts and it took the Pintada Kid a few years to finally believe that his mom was gone. 

The Ranch out in the Middle of nowhere where he and his two sisters went to live with his grandparents was a big change from what he was used to in the city. The only things his mom and dad left him were a Guitar and Violin and he would get up on top of this big old barn every night with his guitar and sing and play to all the Wild Animals below; to the horses and cattle; and to the Stars, the Planets, and the Moon; and he Swore he was gonna be the best guitar player and singer that ever was. And today he has now been playing over a half century and he considers himself as good or better than the best at playing guitar and singing in both English and Spanish.

For a couple of years after his mom died the Pintada Kid would stare at the Road into town about a dozen miles way hoping he could spot a glimpse of his mom coming down the road to pick him and his two sisters up and take them back home, but she never showed up.

Ranch work was hard work but it made the Pintada Kid strong and by the time he graduated from High School he had put 8 or 9 years of hard work. After graduation he took on all kinds of jobs in Restaurants, Gas Stations, Motels, Truckstops, and Vocational schools, but he loved being out in the Mountains exploring. Of course, his guitar was always with him wherever he went, and everywhere he went people wanted to hear him play and sing. 

[Some of his friends] loved treasure hunting and exploring New Mexico. They [told] the Kid about a friend who had seen some skeletons in a cave out in the Pintada Canyon area and gave the him Directions to the area. The Pintada Kid [knew] that area well and thought he could probably find [the location] but it wasn't as easy as he thought. Years later he talked to his brother-in-law, who convinced him that if he found that cave with skeletons he would probably end up solving the Heberer Lorius case, one of the Ten Greatest Unsolved Mysteries in the United States. Although it took years to find the right area of the Heberer Lorius peoples' resting place, the Pintada Kid feels sure he has found [both] the right area and important evidence to solve a Great Mystery rivaling [those of] Amelia Earhart and the Lindbergh Baby.


Starting tomorrow: The beginning of the Pintada Kid's 10-part Story on the Heberer Lorius case in his own words.

5 comments:

Jean (aka Auntie Bucksnort) said...

Fascinating man and fascinating mystery. I can't wait for the first installment.

Beth said...

Wow, what an interesting life the Pintada Kid has led! I'm looking forward to reading his story about the unsolved mystery.

JC said...

I'm not awake yet ... more coffee needed and I'll read ALL ABOUT it. You always reel me in don't ya ...

Deb said...

I'm hooked. Come on, give it up!

Droolin' Fo' Mo' in Delawhere

becky said...

Sad that he lost both his parents so young. That would be so hard for a little kid.