Murder Sheet

You Never Can Forget: The Remembrance

January 12, 2021 Mystery Sheet Season 1 Episode 9
Murder Sheet
You Never Can Forget: The Remembrance
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Murder Sheet
You Never Can Forget: The Remembrance
Jan 12, 2021 Season 1 Episode 9
Mystery Sheet

In this episode of "You Never Can Forget," Áine Cain and Kevin Greenlee will share their opinions on all the theories discussed in this miniseries on the Burger Chef murders. We'll also share our thoughts on the reasons why the crime has gone unsolved, how investigators can heat up this cold case, and why this all still matters today.

If you have questions about the Burger Chef case or the miniseries "You Never Can Forget," please email [email protected] Next Tuesday, we'll be doing a Q&A-style show where we'll tackle your questions.

To learn more about the unsolved murder of Ann Harmeier, follow Who Killed Ann? on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Follow the Murder Sheet on social media for the latest on the Burger Chef murders and future episodes: 

And send tips and thoughts to [email protected] 

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode of "You Never Can Forget," Áine Cain and Kevin Greenlee will share their opinions on all the theories discussed in this miniseries on the Burger Chef murders. We'll also share our thoughts on the reasons why the crime has gone unsolved, how investigators can heat up this cold case, and why this all still matters today.

If you have questions about the Burger Chef case or the miniseries "You Never Can Forget," please email [email protected] Next Tuesday, we'll be doing a Q&A-style show where we'll tackle your questions.

To learn more about the unsolved murder of Ann Harmeier, follow Who Killed Ann? on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Follow the Murder Sheet on social media for the latest on the Burger Chef murders and future episodes: 

And send tips and thoughts to [email protected] 

Áine Cain: This past October, we pulled into Roselawn Memorial Park in Terre Haute, Indiana. We were there to visit the grave of Jayne Friedt. And we weren’t alone. Retired Indiana State Police Major Jim Cramer went along with us. Like Jayne, he’s originally from Terre Haute. His parents are buried in another cemetery, not too far away. 

The grass was brown from the frost, and the leaves on the trees were falling. We didn’t immediately find Jayne’s grave, so we split up to examine the names on the stones. After a few minutes of searching, we found her resting place. She lies near a tree, alongside her baby brother and her parents. It’s haunting to see the familiar name and date right there, carved in stone, on a grave.

We visited Jayne just before the 42nd anniversary of her death. 42 years, she and the other victims in the Burger Chef murders have waited for answers. We hope that they won’t have to wait 42 years more.

*Eerie music plays* 

Áine Cain: My name is Aine Cain.

Kevin Greenlee: And I’m Kevin Greenlee.

Áine Cain: And we’re the Murder Sheet. We’ll be taking a multi-part look into the Burger Chef murders. We’ll be presenting you with a new theory about what happened each week as part of our miniseries, "You Never Can Forget."

On a weekly basis, you’re going to hear from figures you’ve never heard from before. You’re going to hear about facts that you’ve never heard before. And hopefully, you’ll walk away with a better understanding of the sheer complexity of this awful crime.

Kevin Greenlee: We don’t just rely on what we’ve been told or what we’ve read. We have worked this case ourselves. 

We decided to do this podcast so we can tell you what we’ve learned and even clear up a few misconceptions. In this miniseries, we will give you the top theories about the crime. After we’re finished covering the Burger Chef case, the Murder Sheet will continue to investigate different restaurant related homicides for the rest of season one. 

Kevin Greenlee: We’re the Murder Sheet, and this is “You Never Can Forget: The Remembrance.”

*Eerie music based on the Burger Chef jingle plays* 

Kevin Greenlee: We began this podcast on November 17, 2020 — exactly 42 years to the day after the day that four young employees vanished from the Burger Chef in Speedway, Indiana. 

In this episode, we’re going to talk about three things: What we think are the strongest and weakest theories in the case, what we think law enforcement needs to do in order to potentially solve the murders, and why this all still matters. 

Áine Cain: To begin, let’s recap some of the theories we’ve discussed this season — and offer our own analysis of them. We’ll even be honest about the areas where we personally disagree with one another.

Kevin Greenlee: We started our season by devoting two episodes to the story of Allen Pruitt — who, as you’ll recall — stood outside the Burger Chef restaurant as the kids were being abducted and was therefore in a position to see everything. He told authorities the perps were Jeff Reed and Tim Willoughby, a man who had allegedly been murdered half a year earlier. We covered this in great detail in "The Creek."

Áine Cain: Pruitt is a deeply frustrating witness. Because both an unrelated witness and his best friend placed him at the scene, both of us are convinced that he was definitely at the restaurant that night and therefore could theoretically have seen everything he claimed. He is therefore potentially the single most important witness in the entire case.

Kevin Greenlee: The problem, of course, is that he has changed the details of his story so many times that he has severe credibility problems. So, while he could have seen what he claimed, he also very well could have seen something else entirely, or even nothing at all. When a person alters his story as often as Pruitt has, it makes it difficult — if not impossible — to believe anything he says.

Áine Cain: I also have some problems with the details of the story he offered in his statement. For instance, he says he saw Mark being violently slammed against the side of the kidnappers’ van before leaving the restaurant. Based on descriptions of Mark’s wounds, I don’t necessarily see him being beaten at the restaurant.

Kevin Greenlee: I can’t entirely agree with that. If the top of Mark’s head was smashed into the van, I don’t believe it would cause injuries that are inconsistent with what we’ve been told are in the photographs. I am not ready to say that Mark was not hurt at the restaurant — just that his more severe injuries likely happened later.

Áine Cain: In "The Backbone," we discussed what Pruitt said happened the day after the murders. According to him, Jeff Reed and Tim Willoughby lured him into a van, drove him to a secluded wooded area and then tried to kill him — forcing him to run for his life. 

On the surface, that story seems wild and even outlandish — something out of a thriller. I have a lot of doubts about the incident unfolding like that. But I can’t say it’s definitely not true. The bigger question here is whether or not we believe it’s plausible that Jeff Reed and Tim Willoughby could have committed the murders.

We do know from multiple sources that Reed told several people after the murders that he was the guilty man. Of course, we don’t know what — if anything — Willoughby may have told people after the crime because he was allegedly deceased. The key question is — do we believe Tim Willoughby was in fact murdered months before the Burger Chef murders? 

Kevin Greenlee: Frankly we go back and forth on that question.

However we both find the statement from the woman who said she saw Tim in the Avon area, alive and healthy, a couple of weeks before the murders to be highly credible. And we both agree that Karen Tucker’s statement describing the supposed killings of Tim and his girlfriend Mary Ann contains details that are difficult to believe. 

If Tim was alive at the time of the murders — and was complicit in them — it is likely he fled to a southern state such as Tennessee or Florida. Authorities there would have little reason or incentive to look for him as he was at the time regarded as nothing more than a minor car thief. He could, theoretically, even be alive today. 

Áine Cain: Our next episodes — "The Tank" and "The Confessions" — focused on Donald Forrester, the man who told Marion County Sheriff investigators that he was responsible for the deaths of the four kids.

It is difficult to prove a negative and so therefore we cannot say with certainty that Forrester did not commit these crimes. 

But! 

If Forrester was guilty, then he was a tactical genius who played intricate 4D chess with the police, manipulating them with false information in a successful bid to make a prosecution all but impossible. 

Kevin Greenlee: That seems unlikely. The odds are instead that he bore no responsibility for the Burger Chef murders and that overzealous or inexperienced investigators in over their heads inadvertently fed him information which he used to concoct plausible sounding confessions.

Áine Cain: We feel strongly that Forrester was, however, a monstrous man capable of great acts of violence against women. We believe it is fair to look at him as a suspect in any unsolved rapes or disappearances of women that occurred in areas where he frequented. That — rather than the Burger Chef murders — are the sort of crimes we all should be looking at him for.

Kevin Greenlee: After Forrester, we covered "The Robbers." This is the theory that the murders were committed by a robbery gang that had been operating in the area. The gang had been targeting Burger Chef restaurants. There wasn’t much violence associated with their other crimes — aside from what appeared to be an accidental shooting of a clerk. But in this instance, the theory goes, something went wrong and the decision was made to eliminate the four Burger Chef employees.

As we outlined in the episode, there is a great deal of circumstantial evidence that supports this hypothesis. Unfortunately, there is little direct evidence that does so. On the other hand, there is little evidence out there that would disprove or contradict this theory.

Áine Cain: Of course, If this theory is true — and it may very well be — then some of the men responsible for the murders are still alive and so may still face justice for what they did. For this reason we would strongly encourage the investigators now working on this case to explore this angle and see if they can find more evidence that could help either prove or disprove it. 

Kevin Greenlee: Another figure we discussed was Terry, which is not his real name. This is the man who threw a loaded gun out the window of his car near the Burger Chef when he was stopped by police at about the same time as the abductions were occurring. 

We are, obviously, open to the idea of this man’s presence near the crime with a .38 — which was the same calibre of weapon as used in the murders — could simply be a remarkable coincidence. But this man’s record shows that he was capable of violence and he, like Pruitt, was definitely in the area at the time of the crime. We feel he deserves more attention.

Áine Cain: We would be especially interested in getting more details about the time of the traffic stop. The employees were likely kidnapped no later than around 11:45 p.m. If the traffic stop happened around quarter to twelve, then that seems highly significant. If the traffic stop occurred later — say around 12:15 a.m., then the incident seems less significant. 

Kevin Greenlee: In any case, he is — like some of the members of the robbery gang — a living suspect and so we feel police should make an effort to track him down and speak with him.

Áine Cain: I’m particularly interested in Terry as a potential suspect in this case. I want more information on this guy, and I want to find him and ask him what happened that night.

Kevin Greenlee: We also covered the brothers: Kevin Flemmonds and James Friedt, two siblings of victims who some have long whispered may have been tied to the murders in some fashion. 

For us, Kevin Flemmonds seems a highly unlikely suspect — although we don’t want to rule anything or anyone out entirely. Kevin Flemmonds was African American. Our understanding is that his three co-conspirators in the 1981 murder of Adrian Brown were all African American as well. If you believe George Nichols and his girlfriend, the teens who saw two men behind the Burger Chef shortly before the kidnappings, the perps were two white men.

Áine Cain: But there are circumstantial problems even without that witness sighting. In the African American community around Indianapolis, Speedway was widely known as a racist town in 1978. Speedway police were known to target Black drivers for traffic stops and tickets. What’s more, the killers drove the victims down to a rural area in Johnson County, which was also known to be unfriendly to Black people in that time. Why would Kevin Flemmonds have risked driving a vehicle full of victims down to an area where law enforcement might’ve pulled him over solely based on the color of his skin? 

Kevin Greenlee: Jimmy Friedt seems like a far more interesting possibility, although there’s little direct evidence against the man. If you find the witness sightings credible, he does resemble the bearded man — or at least he did in 1981. We’ve heard stories that indicate he may have not been especially protective of family members, and the records show he was having financial problems in the late seventies and early eighties.

The biggest mark against Jimmy Friedt is his 1981 arrest as part of a big cocaine ring. Is it possible that Jimmy Friedt’s activities prompted other criminals to target his sister Jayne? Could he have recruited her to participate in the drug trade? We do wonder if Jimmy Friedt could have had a hand in what happened in 1978 — or at least carried guilty knowledge that could’ve helped investigators crack the case.

Áine Cain: It’s fair to say, though, that his arrest on cocaine charges might have made a ripple through the criminal element in Indianapolis, prompting men like Pruitt and Forrester to tie him into their stories on the case. 

Kevin Greenlee: Speaking of major drug gangs, we also spoke about convicted Speedway bomber Brett Kimberlin, the Sons of Silence motorcycle gang, and the buttoned-up drug ring called the Company in our episode called “The Others.” 

We are intrigued by the possibility that a large drug organization was behind the killings. There’s no real evidence supporting this, but lots of conjecture from people familiar with the Indianapolis underworld in the 1970s.

Áine Cain: We’d be curious to know more about the different drug businesses that could have been connected to whatever happened. A lot of them seemed non-violent, or at least not capable of a crime this egregious. 

We don’t understand what would prompt a large drug ring would kidnap four employees from a restaurant. If some of the employees had been targets, why not just go after them when they were alone and vulnerable? And why would a savvy drug operation entrust such young people with enough money or drugs to lead to a situation resulting in murder?

Kevin Greenlee: If the restaurant itself was a target, then we’d want to know what drug operation would’ve used such a business model. If a drug ring had been hiding contraband in the restaurant and found that it had gone missing, it might make sense that they’d panic and kidnap all of the employees on duty that night.

Highly-respected Indianapolis News reporters Skip Hess and Paul Bird reported that the Burger Chef in Speedway was a drug front. They even said that police had investigated the ring in the months before the killings. And, in fairness, there did seem to be a ton of drug smuggling and car theft in Speedway and the Westside of Indianapolis back then.

Áine Cain: The Bird-Hess reports are very tantalizing, but I can’t help but feel they were fed a line by a trusted law enforcement source. Maybe their sources were investigators attempting to flush out information on the Burger Chef murders, and threw this scenario out there to see if it prompted any reaction. I’m also baffled that no one ever seemed to follow up on this lead in the press.

Kevin Greenlee: Bird and Hess were excellent journalists,, and we know from talking to law enforcement that they were exceptionally well-sourced. I believe that what they printed about the Burger Chef drug ring could’ve been true. We’d love to talk to someone involved in investigating this angle.

Áine Cain: When it comes to theories about one of the kids being targeted specifically, there tend to be three separate camps.

Kevin Greenlee: There are a few rumors out there about how Ruth Shelton may have targeted because she once gave the police information related to something she had seen in connection to the Speedway bombings. She did indeed phone in a potential lead but there is no indication that anyone associated with the bombings ever had the ability to identify her as a tipster. So those rumors don’t seem very convincing. 

Áine Cain: Many theories center Mark Flemmonds as the killers’ intended target. Mark’s friend and former coworker Ginger Anderson told us that she switched shifts with Mark that night. It’s possible that he inadvertently saw someone that he recognized during a robbery.

Others hold that Mark was involved with drugs. There is some evidence for this. We’ve heard from police and coworkers that Mark likely smoked — or even sold — a bit of pot here and there.

Kevin Greenlee: Then again, the possibility of Mark being so immersed in drug culture has some key problems. Press reports had the 16-year-old telling a friend that he feared for his life over a $7,000 drug debt. What kind of dealer would give a teenager such a significant line of credit? To be clear, that would be approximately $28,000 today. Perhaps an inexperienced or irrational dealer. Other than that, the debt story only makes sense if Mark inadvertently took some kind of drug or money cache that he came across, but there’s no indication that something like that happened.

Áine Cain: There’s a third possibility that’s been raised regarding Mark: that there was a racist element to his murder. Mark was the only Black victim of the four. He was killed by some kind of blow to the face, that prompted him to fall back and choke on his own blood while unconscious. It seems possible that the more personalized violence that this kind of strike could have necessitated could have been motivated by racism. But it’s impossible to say based on the information we currently have.

Kevin Greenlee: There have also been allegations that Mark and Jayne were in a relationship, and that the killing was therefore racially motivated. That seems highly unlikely. We know that Jayne was in a relationship at the time of the killings, and — from what people have told us about her — it seems unlikely she would date a much-younger employee. 

Áine Cain: If the murders occurred because one of the employees was being targeted, we believe that Jayne seems like a more logical target. She had family connections to the drug trade through her older brother Jimmy Friedt. Pruitt and Forrester — who, to be clear, have serious credibility issues — single her out as the target of the killings. Jayne seems to have drifted away from her boyfriend and some friends in the year or so before the murders, and it seems possible that — out of isolation or desperation — she turned to selling drugs. But of course, there’s nothing concrete pointing to that. 

Kevin Greenlee: We believe that it’s also possible that none of the kids were being targeted, and that they were all simply at the wrong place at the wrong time. Regardless of whether any of them were involved with the drug trade, they are victims. And very young victims at that. None of them deserved to die, no matter of whatever was happening in their lives.

Áine Cain: So that’s where we personally stand on each of the issues raised in this miniseries. There’s so much information out there, but in some ways, it feels like we’re barely below the surface in this case.

*Podcast promo*

Áine Cain: Let’s take a quick break from The Murder Sheet Presents: "You Never Can Forget” to tell you about a podcast investigating yet another unforgettable crime. 

The Orange Tree is a seven-part series about a 2005 homicide that happened near the University of Texas at Austin. The murder of 21-year-old Jennifer Cave, who was shot, dismembered, and left in a bathtub at her friend Colton Pitonyak’s apartment, continues to haunt the area to this day.

Kevin Greenlee: Like the Burger Chef murders, this case features plenty of twists and turns, including Colton’s flight to Mexico with another UT student Laura Hall. Both were later convicted in connection with the crime, although Colton has continued to appeal his verdict and claim innocence. The business student-turned-convicted-murderer now says that he doesn’t remember much about the night Jennifer died. 

Áine Cain: The Orange Tree is reported on and produced by Haley Butler and Tinu Thomas, who were both seniors at the University of Texas when they started the project.

Together, Haley and Tinu strive to piece together this tragic story in an in-depth podcast that features audio from courtroom scenes and interrogation rooms, prison phone calls, and exclusive interviews with both perpetrators and the victim’s family.

You can binge all seven episodes of The Orange Tree today on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen to podcasts. And now, back to the Murder Sheet.

And now, back to the Murder Sheet.

*End of podcast promo*

Kevin Greenlee: Now let’s get into two of the biggest questions we get asked about this case: Why is it still unsolved? And how can we change that?

Áine Cain: Answering the first question — why did the Burger Chef murders go unsolved — is complicated. We’re not looking to criticize 1978 law enforcement tactics based on modern investigative procedures and technology.  Things like DNA analysis were still a ways off back then.

Nonetheless, the sloppiness of the Speedway Police Department is perhaps the biggest reason this case went unsolved. The incompetence demonstrated by that department went far beyond anything that could be attributed to hindsight. 

Kevin Greenlee: The lack of drive and caring that this case was shown is immensely frustrating to behold. The Speedway police detective who apparently allowed the Burger Chef to be cleaned up after the disappearances was later revealed to be an alcoholic, who was forced to resign after he killed a woman with his car. The Speedway police chief was a disaster at the time, dealing with outright rebellion among the force’s rank and file. Speaking to people familiar with the situation, one gets the sense that the murders prompted a collective shrug from the Speedway police.

Áine Cain: But the Speedway Police weren’t the only agency to bungle a crime scene here. Forces from Marion County, Johnson County, and the state police convened on the murder site in Johnson County, potentially destroying evidence in the process. We’ve heard of one crime scene technician who carelessly handled the victims’ Burger Chef uniforms.

Kevin Greenlee: It is fair to say that crime scenes were processed differently in the 1970s. But it doesn’t appear that basic care was taken with either the abduction site or the murder site. And the result has been 42 years of pain and uncertainty for the families of the four young victims. 

Áine Cain: The Burger Chef murders is still an open case with the Indiana State Police. Since the 1990s, the ISP has assigned the case to a single lead detective: first Stoney Vann, then Bill Dalton. We appreciate the efforts of these investigators, who both seem to care deeply about the case and the victims. But these men have both had administrative duties on top of the case. We can’t help but feel that the Burger Chef case — and other cold cases like it — would benefit from the establishment of a cold case unit. 

Kevin Greenlee: When we speak to people in Indiana about the Burger Chef case, so many cling to this idea of the “good old days.” That “back in the day,” violent crime simply didn’t happen. This is a form of selective blindness, and it’s simply untrue. Look at the cold cases that occurred in Indiana in the 1960s and 1970s and the 1980s. The “good old days” start to look like they were engulfed by a wave of violence — one that washed through Indianapolis, the state of Indiana, and the United States as a whole. 

Áine Cain: To act as if Burger Chef murders represented the “end of innocence” for Speedway or Indianapolis or Indiana is to ignore all the crime and drugs and violence that marked that time. It also gives a pass to the leaders tasked with keeping the community safe back then, who utterly failed. 

We’re not alone in seeing the pattern of horrific unsolved cases in Indiana from that time.

Kevin Greenlee: In 1977, veteran crime reporter Larry Incollingo spoke to the Richmond Palladium-Item about an recent murder. 

"What I fear most is they'll soon get tired of a stagnant investigation, drop it, and go on to something else. That would be a sad and terrible thing,” Incollingo said. 

Áine Cain: He was talking about the disappearance of a 20-year-old Indiana University student named Ann Harmeier. She vanished on September 12, 1977, about a year and a few months before the Burger Chef murders. Ann was driving back to Indiana University when her car broke down on Route 37, two miles north of Martinsville. Sometime after that, Ann disappeared. 

Here’s Scott Burnham, Ann’s cousin. He was only 10-years-old when she vanished.

Scott Burnham: HER BODY WAS FOUND ABOUT FIVE WEEKS LATER, ABOUT FIVE MILES EAST OF WHERE HER VEHICLE HAD STALLED. AND A FARMER WHO WAS CUTTING DOWN HIS CORN CROPS HAD COME ACROSS HER BODY. HER PURSE WAS NEARBY. ONE OF HER SHOELACES WAS USED TO TIE HER HANDS AROUND HER BACK. AND THE OTHER WAS USED TO TIE AROUND HER NECK. AFTER SHE WAS RAPED, HER ASSAILANT USED HER HAIRBRUSH TO TWIST THE KNOT AROUND HER NECK SO SHE WOULD SUCCUMB TO ASPHYXIATION MORE QUICKLY.

Kevin Greenlee: Her brutal killing remains unsolved although, like in case of the Burger Chef murders, a number of suspects have arisen over the years. 

Áine Cain: Speaking to the Palladium-Item in 1977, Incollingo pointed out that multiple women had vanished in the Bloomington area throughout the seventies, with little progress on their cases.

Here’s what he had to say.

Kevin Greenlee: "There is something missing in our investigative process here when all these girls can disappear and never be found. It makes me sick. Christ, I feel these kids are entrusted to us, this community, by some implied contract when they come down here. We've got to be responsible somewhere.”

Áine Cain: Today, Scott is doggedly researching Ann’s murder. We’ll include a link to the Facebook page dedicated to his cousin’s case in the show notes. Scott said he’s struck by the fact that there were so many unsolved murders in Indiana — especially unsolved rape-murders of young women. By his count, there are over 400 unsolved murders on the books in Indiana, and also a backlog of untested rape kits. 

Scott Burnham: THERE WERE SO MANY WOMEN WHO WERE MURDERED, RAPED, AND ASSAULTED. AND NOT ONLY WAS THERE AN INORDINATE NUMBER OF VICTIMS BUT THEY APPEARED TO BE AN EXTRAORDINARY NUMBER OF UNSOLVED CASES.

Áine Cain: Scott is now pushing legislation that would allow the state police to form a cold case unit to tackle older unsolved cases. Burnham said the state police have been receptive to the proposal, and we’re thrilled by that. We believe that the Burger Chef case, along with all Indiana cold cases, would benefit from the formation of such a squad. 

Kevin Greenlee: A lot of large police institutions around the country have implemented permanent cold case squads with success. We personally feel that not only would a cold case unit be a boon to the families of victims and society as a whole, but it would be a great chance for state police to partner experienced investigators with rookies, to allow for hands-on investigative training. We hope that this legislation receives the support and bipartisan backing it so richly deserves. 

Let's revisit what Incollingo said all the way back in 1977. The community, police, reporters, politicians and everyday civilians, owe it to the victims of violent crimes to work to solve these cases. If so many cases are allowed to go cold, then something is indeed “missing in our investigative process” and that needs to be corrected. 

Áine Cain: Budgetary issues shouldn’t hinder the investigation of heinous murders and rapes. Political considerations shouldn’t block families off from receiving long-awaited answers about their loved ones’ murders. Anybody who cares about justice in the state of Indiana should be on board with dedicating resources toward elevating these unsolved mysteries. 

Kevin Greenlee: We have the good fortune to encounter many people like Scott — people who are concerned with justice and finding the truth. We believe that this is why the story of the Burger Chef case has resonated with so many people. 

Áine. Cain: Around 4,000 people have joined Facebook groups associated with the Burger Chef case. These individuals discuss the case everyday online, debating key theories and turning up new leads. And the moderators responsible for the groups facilitate keeping this conversation alive.

Kevin Greenlee: Retired ISP detective Todd McComas ran four episodes on the Burger Chef murders on his 10-41 podcast — you can hear our conversation with him in the episode “The Robbers.” Ashley Flowers of Crime Junkie covered the story of the ongoing investigation in Red Ball. The murders have even attracted attention from around the world — including from Australian documentarians Adam Kamien and Luke Rynderman.

And you — you listening to this show right now — have all cared enough to go on this deep dive with us. We appreciate you all for listening. Next week, we’ll be doing a Q&A on the Burger Chef case, so please send your questions to [email protected].

Àine Cain: Sometimes, we think about what Jayne and Ruth and Danny and Mark would’ve been doing now, had they not been so killed. Their memories are also never far from the minds of their surviving family members.

Here’s Theresa Jefferies, Ruth’s younger sister. She told us about living with the daily reminders of her older sister. 

Theresa Jefferies: MY NEIGHBOR HAS LILY OF THE VALLEY ACROSS THE STREET. AND THAT ALWAYS REMINDS ME OF WHEN WE LIVED ON LUPINE AND THERE WAS LILY OF THE VALLEY THAT GREW BESIDE THE HOUSE. AND RUTH HAD ASKED ME TO PICK SOME OF THE FLOWERS BECAUSE SHE WANTED TO PUT IT IN HER HAIR. SO THAT, IN MY MIND, BECAME HER FLOWER THEN.

Kevin Greenlee:
While we’ll be wrapping up our coverage of the Burger Chef case by answering some listener questions next week, we will continue to work on this case and others like it. When we receive updates, we will share them with you. And we will never forget what happened to Jayne and Ruth and Danny and Mark.

Áine Cain: Before we go, I'll share one story with you. In the fall of 2019, I visited Indiana for the first time, to research the Burger Chef case. During my trip, Kevin and I visited St. Christopher, the Catholic Church in Speedway Indiana. It's a little church located on West 15th and Lynhurst Drive, just up the road from Speedway Police headquarters. A short walk away from the spot where Jayne’s Vega was found on the morning after the disappearances. 

It was November then. In Christian tradition, November is the month of the dead. 

St. Christopher had set out a Book of Remembrance, and invited congregants to write the names of the deceased within its pages.

Kevin Greenlee: Áine and I approached the book and wrote out the four names: Jayne Friedt, Ruth Shelton, Daniel Davis, and Mark Flemmonds. 

Áine Cain: We never will forget.

Kevin Greenlee:  Thanks for listening to this episode of the Murder Sheet Presents: "You Never Can Forget." Special thanks to Kevin Tyler Greenlee, who composed the music for the Murder Sheet, and who you can find on the web at kevintg.com.  

Áine Cain:
To keep up with the latest on the Murder Sheet, make sure to follow us on Instagram and Twitter @murdersheet and on Facebook @msheetpodcast or by searching Murder Sheet. For exclusive content like bonus episodes and case files, become a patron of the Murder Sheet on Patreon.

If you enjoyed listening to the Murder Sheet, please leave us a five star review to help us gain more exposure. And send tips, suggestions, and feedback to [email protected]. Thanks so much for listening.

And please stay tuned for word from our friend Nina at the podcast Already Gone — a great podcast you should be listening to. She actually introduced me to the Burger Chef case with her 2016 episode on the crime. 

*Melancholy music plays*

Nina Innsted from “Already Gone”: Murder, missing persons, unsolved mysteries — ”Already Gone” explores lesser-known cases from Michigan and the Great Lakes region. I’m Nina Innsted, the voice behind the “Already Gone” podcast. Join me for a look at stories that will have you looking over your shoulder and locking the doors at night. Listen to “Already Gone” on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, or your favorite podcatcher.