50 years ago: Van accident a bit of a mystery

West bayIn the April 13, 1966 edition of the Caymanian Weekly, a precursor of the Cayman Compass, the paper reported:

“On the morning of Tuesday, April 5, the Volkswagen Micro Bus CI347 owned by Mr. J.D. Macdonald was to be seen parked outside the home of Mrs. Adelade Hydes on the North West Point road at West Bay. This was damaged with a badly dented roof, shattered glass, grazes to both sides of the bodywork and a blown-out right front tire.

“Upon enquiry, it was ascertained that Mr. Macdonald, a resident of Crewe Road, had reported to the police that at 3 a.m. the same day he had been driving his Volkswagen along the West Bay road in the vicinity of Mr. Lear Grimmer’s new house, heading toward George Town, when the right front tire blew out and the vehicle overturned and ended up facing in the opposite direction.

“As the vehicle landed on its wheels, he had restarted the engine and drove very slowly back into West Bay with the object of returning to the house occupied by Mr. Jack Graham and Mr. Bill Bennett where he had earlier been visiting.

“He reported that he had been able to drive as far as the home of Mrs. Adelade Hydes where the vehicle had stopped, and he had walked the rest of the way to Mr. Graham’s house, where he received attention to minor injuries and was then driven to his own home.

“Mr. Macdonald told the police that he was alone in the vehicle at the time of the accident. A handbag belonging to Miss Pansy Gay Bush was recovered from the micro bus where it was found parked by Constable Parchment of West Bay police station. When this was returned to the owner, she said that Mr. Macdonald had given her a lift to her home prior to the accident and that she had, inadvertently, left the handbag in the vehicle.

“A curious feature of this accident is that no one who has investigated the scene where the vehicle is reported to have overturned can find any marks of any kind pinpointing the spot where the accident happened.”