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Unsolved: Baby Doe (1963)

On June 11, 1963, a man was out fishing in the Keene Creek Reservoir, about 12 miles east of Ashland.

Posted: Mar. 2, 2017 3:03 PM
Updated: Nov. 8, 2017 9:24 AM

NEAR ASHLAND, Ore. -- On June 11, 1963, a man was out fishing in the Keene Creek Reservoir, about 12 miles east of Ashland.

The man thought his hook got caught on "just" a blanket.

But the blanket and quilt were wrapped with wire, and inside, was a young boy's body.

The medical examiner determined the boy likely had downs syndrome, was 1 to 2 years old when he died and had been dead less than a year.

They couldn't determine a cause of death, but classified it a homicide.

In 1963, dental records were seldom used. But this case helped change that.

"Having that resource alone has been huge and that came out of a result of this Keene Creek boy case,” says Detective Sgt. Colin Fagan.

Records show baby John Doe had unique teeth, which could have made him easily identifiable.

One of his front, bottom teeth was split in two, so it had two roots and an uncommon drove at it's top.

Many think the toddler was well cared for because he was found wearing clothing likely purchased at JC Penney.  

The store location used to be housed inside the Medford historic building. He was also wearing shoes purchased from the Norris Shoe Store in downtown Medford.

The body was buried in Medford at Hillcrest Cemetery. His grave marker reads, “John Doe – name only known to God.”

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