The Few, The Proud, The Deceased
Update 8/23/07:  Solved by Val the Nerdy Net Sleuth

Road:                        Hwy 395, 10 miles south of Minden, Nevada
Location:                  Minden, Nevada

Victim #1:                 
Dustin Shawn Boesch
Date of Accident:   
October 14, 1993

Inscription:              "Dustin Shawn Boesch, Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps,  
                                            Born September 26, 1971           Died October 14, 1993
                                         'In memory of a dedicated Marine, an outstanding man, but above all an irreplaceable friend' 

                                            Rest in Peace"

Age:                                 22

Victim #2:                 Jasen M. Swift
Date of Accident:   
October 14, 1993

Inscription:              "Jasen M. Swift, Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps
                                            Born June 8, 1970         Died October 14, 1993
                                            'To our brother, honored and loved by all, from your boys at FAC Maint' "

Age:                                 23

Description:            This is another one that really bothers me.  Two young soldiers cut down in their prime, not by war, but by simple dumb luck.  On the west side of this deserted road, one finds two large, sturdily built, but heavily weathered white crosses, lovingly decorated with lots of fake flowers.  Battered and torn red, white, and blue ribbons drape the monuments.  Each cross has a gold plaque with engraved inscriptions.  It is surprising to see a wood cross last this long (9 years), especially in the miserable desert conditions.

Analysis:                 As with so many other scenes of destruction, these two crosses lie near a dirt road that intersects Hwy 395.  I originally suspected some drunk yocal pulled out of the dirt road onto 395, causing the accident, but thanks to Val the Nerdy Net Sleuth, here's the REAL scoop:


According to Val:         

"Here's the skinny on the accident that took these two soldier's lives.  No drunk yokels involved, but a set of very reckless truck drivers. You were correct about his happening very late at night/morning though! :)

Jasen and Dustin, both corporals in the United States Marines, were driving on Highway 395 near Minden, Nevada in the early morning hours of Oct. 14th, 1993.  Not sure if they were coming from Reno as you suggested, but they were on their way to the Mountain Warfare Training Center near Bridgeport, California where they were stationed. It was on this journey about 5:00 am when they collided with a stalled semi sprawled over NOT ONE, but BOTH lanes of the highway.  The truck was driven by an under-aged driver attempting to make an illegal U-turn while the *legal* owner and operator of the rig slept in the sleeping compartment of the truck. During the illegal U-turn the truck stalled midway. The poor soldiers' car slid right under the center of the trailer, killing them instantly.  According to Dustin's mother, his body was so dismembered after the crash she couldn't even view his body until the funeral. Yeowch!

 Bits of trivia:

 These had to be the BEST darn truck drivers in the world. (Note sarcasm here).  No only did they attempt an illegal U-turn, they:

- Failed to do anything to prevent the crash.
- Drove without valid drivers licenses.
- Failed to register their company for interstate commerce.
- Didn't maintain their mandatory log books.
- Ignored and neglected the hours of service rules for truck drivers.

Oh, and did I mention the owner of the truck who was asleep in the cab had another accident back in 1981 which also resulted in a fatality? Wheee. I bet this guy has a "Best Darn Trucker Ever!" ever bumper sticker on his cab and numerous safety awards littered all over his dashboard.

 More trivia:

 Dustin was in both Desert Storm and Somalia and managed to survive to return home...until he met the best darn trucker ever in Nevada, that is." 

More Images:    Photo One - Photo Two

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