A movie bought at a garage sale turned out to solved two mysterious deaths at once. It all began on the clear, cool morning of May 22nd, 2006 when a small gas station in South Dakota burst into a massive ball of flames. By the the time the volunteer fire department assembled and drove the tractor pulling a water tank into town, there were only the smoldering remains of an import car, the cash cabin, a burned body and a collapsed roof among blackened concrete pillars, walls and melted metal.
Unfortunately, the body was determined to be the attendant who perished in the fire. Due to the extend of the damage, there was no video surveillance to review. The burned out import vehicle was registered to 74 year old Harold Greenburg, who despite extensive searches and a plea to the public, police failed to locate. The case was never solved and cause of the tragedy and disappearance remained a mystery until many years later when an old VHS movie tape was purchased from a local garage sale.
It seems that five years after the tragedy, Henrietta Houser had been out for a stroll one morning when she noticed a garage sale happening a couple of blocks from the station’s former location. Curiosity getting the better of her, she decided to check it out. And while browsing through clothing, books and knick-knacks, she came upon a box of old movie tapes, most still in their original boxes. Being old school, Henrietta still hadn’t upgraded to a DVD player, so she purchased the whole box of movies for a dollar, took them home and then promptly forgot about them for over a month.
Then, one evening she popped some corn and decided to finally watch one or two of the old tapes. Lying on the top was an unmarked one, so she put it in to see what was on it. At first she was puzzled because it seemed to be taken by a security camera at a gas station. She became engaged when she realized it was the local gas station that had burned to the ground years before, killing the attendant and resulting in a missing senior citizen. The movie showed the young man who had died in the fire opening the place and an older gentleman driving an import car pulling up to the self-service pump. Placing his credit or debit card into the pump, he entered his info, selected his grade of fuel and then attempted to put the nozzle in his tank.
Realizing that his gas tank was on the opposite side of his car, he decided to ‘stretch’ the hose in order to make it reach. Another vehicle pulled in to wait just as the stretched hose decided to detach from the pump, allowing fuel to gush forth like blood from a deep arterial wound. Panicking, the driver of the newly arrived vehicle sped backward. And as it it did, one of its tires threw a small bolt that had been caught it its treads toward the pump, striking it and causing a tiny spark. The spark caused a massive explosion that blew the old man into an adjoining field and then the movie ended with a white static filled screen.
Realizing the movie’s significance, Henrietta took it to local police. After officers watched the tape, they searched the field next to the former station and there discovered the skeletal remains of Harold Greenburg. His family was subsequently located and notified to make arrangements for his burial. And the young attendant’s family finally found out what happened to their loved one that horrific morning so long ago.