Body Found Near Bridge Not Missing Metallica Fan Morgan Harrington
Rumors started to fly Nov. 18, following the discovery of a woman's body in Roanoke, Va. Was the body really that of missing Metallica fan Morgan Harrington, who'd vanished from a Metallica concert a month earlier? Fortunately for Gil and Dan Harrington, the body wasn't Morgan's, meaning the search for the 20-year-old Virginia Tech student rages on.
Authorities told reporters that the female body discovered on the Norfolk Southern railroad tracks Tuesday morning was not Harrington's, as was rumored earlier in the day. But Roanoke police detectives and a medical examiner called to the scene determined the female's death did not appear suspicious, and that the woman was not Harrington.
According to police, Tuesday's discovery marks at least the third time detectives have checked into the possibility that a discovered body may be Harrington. Soon after her disappearance, a body was found along the Blue Ridge Parkway outside Asheville, N.C., and a badly burned female body was found over the weekend in Kings Mountain State Park in South Carolina. Police are also shooting down reports that Harrington's disappearance is linked to the departures of two players from the University of Virginia's men's basketball team.
Harrington was last seen outside Metallica's Oct. 17 concert, wearing a Pantera T-shirt, a black mini-skirt, black tights and black boots. She was also wearing a Swarovski crystal necklace with large crystal chain links. Harrington went to the concert with friends, but was separated from them when she went to use the bathroom and somehow ended up outside the venue, which has a no re-entry policy. Police believe she was last seen trying to hitch a ride, which her parents say is unlike her.
On Tuesday, Harrington's mother issued another statement on her daughter's disappearance. "People want a happy ending," Gil Harrington writes. "The happy ending might not come. Instead, what they get might be a take home message and a modeling of how people can proceed through a tragedy with dignity. I believe there is a shift as a country towards community: we are seeking and feeling reconnection and intimacy."
She says she knows there are good people in the world, but "I also recognize that evil exists. The trick is to choose not to let it defeat you. And you do so by living well, not letting this tragedy poison your life. Using your pain to open yourself to others' pain and be more compassionate, make more connections rather than pull away from the world. If you let the loss ruin your life, you let the guys who snatched Morgan win, you let evil win. I cannot let that happen. Our planned circumscribed picture of a life has been fractured, but the shards can be re-arranged into a mosaic; different and abstract now, but still beautiful and precious."