Author Topic: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968  (Read 150310 times)

chickapey

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #345 on: August 24, 2015, 06:21:06 AM »
There was also a Bell Station nearby at Oxford and Hyde Park. Its still there. Clara Benton was there as well.

Declan

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #346 on: August 24, 2015, 09:20:55 AM »
As chickapey pointed out, it is quite possible that the green outfit does not point to a particular trade or occupation and could simply have been worn by someone working on their yard, or garage workshop etc.   On the other hand, if the incidents happened on days in the middle of the work-week and during normal working hours, it might push the needle towards someone who wore the outfit as part of their job - and perhaps they had opportunity to be in this area for reasons connected to their trade.  The area has several schools (and thus janitors).  Additionally, as noted on the map of Frankie's route, there was a PUC utility building immediately to the north of the laneway & pathway.  Thirdly, (and I am unsure of the exact time-line), there was the gravel pit on Hyde Park Road in the immediate area (across the road) that was converted into a landfill.  In either of its roles (gravel pit or landfill) workers there could be wearing the work clothes described. 

The laneway that was immediately to the north of the pathway used by the kids seems especially worth further consideration.  As described variously on these threads, the laneway has not yet been described as a typical "lovers lane", but rather as a lane that appeared to attract creepy men in cars....perhaps an alternate venue to Victoria Park.   I think areas of nearby Sifton (Byron) Bog were also used for these sorts of activities.  If so, it is particularly saddening that the many complaints and incidents described by children in this area were written off as simply products of imagination.   

crazycat58

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #347 on: August 24, 2015, 12:44:00 PM »
We lived on Hyde Park Rd right across the street from the main entrance to the gravel pit at that time.  This was the entrance closest to Riverside Dr.   If memory serves me correctly, the pit was closed down during the winter months, or had very little activity.  Remember this as we used to sneak in there and play in the snowdrifts off the hills.

factsfirst

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #348 on: August 24, 2015, 01:45:01 PM »
crazycat58, you must have vivid recollections of the way this area looked prior to the "diversion" of the Hyde Park Sideroad and the filling in of the gulley. I am assuming from your name that you are close to Frankie in age. Do you have any specific recollections of the first small pathway, identified as a "laneway where creeps drove in and hid" and which is clearly visible on the aerial photo on Reply #290 on page 20 of this thread? I went down there for a walk the other day and, even now, it can be emotional visiting "Fergie's Pond" and walking up the old roadway to the P.U.C. pumpstation. You can't escape the feeling that something very bad happened there. I agree with Declan that every bit of information that we could know about that path is a step in the right direction. Almost by accident it looks like there is a car parked at the end of that crooked laneway if you zoom into the December 17th, 1967 aerial.

crazycat58

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #349 on: August 25, 2015, 08:44:51 AM »
Unfortunately my memories are not as vivid as someone who lived there for years after that tragic day.  Our family ended up spending the majority of the next several years living in Florida.  I do remember the paths and lanes though.  The path we took to walk to school was directly after the enclosure for the horses that was the last house in the grouping on Hyde Park.  We walked up an embankment then through the path with descriptions the same as others have posted here.  On the same side of the road up a bit further was what I believe you are calling the "laneway" was more of an area to pull into while being parallel to the road.  I don't have specific memories of it being a lane.  That is the area where the "dirty white" car was parked along the side of Hyde Park that we saw and reported while we were walking to school the morning that Frankie disappeared.  On the opposite side of Hyde Park in that similar vicinity was what I remember being a road to the pits that was blocked for no entry.  As to the old roadway for the pumpstation and Fergie's pond, I remember them being there, but can't honestly say anything about the demographics as I don't remember being there.  We first left the area in 1969-70, and as we weren't there for any extended lengths of time after that I unfortunately don't have the years of being there to help bring back many more memories.

jellybean

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #350 on: August 25, 2015, 07:39:56 PM »
Green Shirt, green pants and green hat.  Could it be drab olive green? There was an Army Base in London Ontario at the time.  This outfit described by a poster, is similar to outfits worn by those in the lower ranks.

The hat was pillbox at the top with a peak at the front.

Oddly, I cannot locate an image of this uniform.

While I am a military brat, (airforce), I had occasion to be on an army base, and would see them all of the time, coming and going about their business on an army base, CFB Griesbach (now defunct) situated in Edmonton at that time.

I may be confused, as I have also been on an American base, but I definitely did see this army uniform (s) - plain shirt, and plain pants with the hat of which I have described.

I was never in London.

Anyhow, it is possibly army.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CFB_London

jb

« Last Edit: August 25, 2015, 08:07:10 PM by jellybean »

Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #351 on: September 01, 2015, 08:27:44 PM »
We lived on Hyde Park Rd right across the street from the main entrance to the gravel pit at that time.  This was the entrance closest to Riverside Dr.   If memory serves me correctly, the pit was closed down during the winter months, or had very little activity.  Remember this as we used to sneak in there and play in the snowdrifts off the hills.
  I just located this site. It brings back some not so pleasant memories. In 1968 I was a kid that was a student at Westdale Public School. The world of innocence ended for us kids back then. We always played in the woods that back onto Westdale and Oakridge.

Hearing the name Fergies Pond is astounding.  If my memory serves me right there were 5 trails made throughout the woods so we kids could walk to school.

The first trail started at the west end of Quinton and Salway. This was a dead end road area.  The next trail ran north and south behind the houses on Larkspur Cres, it then hooked up a hill west towards Westdale. This trail and the one from Quiton met up by a large old Oak tree about 100 feet east of Westdale.  The continued onto the school grounds by the baseball diamond.

The third trail ran south from the south end of Oakridges quarter mile track. It came out down by the shop class room . Another path ran from this corner of Westdale and connected to the south east corner of Oxford and Hyde Park Rd.  the kids from Oakridge used this trail as partof the cross country run. This was the 4th trail.

The fifth trail ran west from the dead end at Valetta .It ran west towards Hyde Park.  It came out by some PUC building.  Off to the north of this trail was Fergies Pond.

This is where things get rather spookie. I remember one of my buddies telling me that area of the woods by Fergies Pond is a bad area.  This memory is now almost 50 years old.  It was something about some guy who yells at kids from the bush scaring them.

I never experienced this, though we did find in the area some old torn Playboy book pages. This must have been about 1967 . The reason I believe this was the year, we kids painted a map of Canada on the play ground.


Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #352 on: September 01, 2015, 09:19:10 PM »
Thanks so much for posting these Rkay.  The gentleman with police is not P.L. Pickles.  Could it be Det. Alsop?

The police officer in the last photo, is Staff Sergeant Shipley. He would later become , years later, Chief of Police for London Police.

Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #353 on: September 01, 2015, 09:43:58 PM »
Green Shirt, green pants and green hat.  Could it be drab olive green? There was an Army Base in London Ontario at the time.  This outfit described by a poster, is similar to outfits worn by those in the lower ranks.

The hat was pillbox at the top with a peak at the front.

Oddly, I cannot locate an image of this uniform.

While I am a military brat, (airforce), I had occasion to be on an army base, and would see them all of the time, coming and going about their business on an army base, CFB Griesbach (now defunct) situated in Edmonton at that time.

There were three gas stations at Oxford and Hyde Park.  The Texeco was at the north west corner. They wore green pants and shirts. Texeco green, later they went to tan shirts but kept the green pants. Those US military caps sound like the ones worn by pump jockeys.  There was a Shell on the southwest and I believe a WhiteRose on the north east corner.

Quote
I may be confused, as I have also been on an American base, but I definitely did see this army uniform (s) - plain shirt, and plain pants with the hat of which I have described.

I was never in London.

Anyhow, it is possibly army.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CFB_London

jb

**edited to fix quote
« Last Edit: September 01, 2015, 10:06:20 PM by debbiec »

jensen

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #354 on: September 02, 2015, 03:51:30 AM »
Welcome and thank you for joining the conversation Bucky.  Your memory certainly serves you well, in fact I'd say it's photographic with regard to the layout of the trails surrounding Westdale and Oakridge.  I walked those paths again as I read your comments.  The green work clothes do indeed resemble the uniform that gas station attendants wore at that time.  The identification of Staff Sargent Shipley is also important to these investigations. It is wonderful to know the names of all the people in these historical photos...people who helped, and people like you who come forward with remembrance.  Please continue to share your thoughts.

Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #355 on: September 02, 2015, 07:42:13 AM »
This case haunted me as a child. I was a kid then. I remember the foot search of the area , as my Dad and I walked many search lines with the police.  I was in Mr Pickles class in 1968 . My grade 8 year. 

The woods around the school were the play ground for many of the kids. The trails were faster to walk then bicycling all around the streets to get to school.  We got to know the area well , as there were tree forts, wild strawberries and crab apples.

The area by Fergies Pond as I remember was surrounded by large growths of thorn bushes , huge dense bushes. You really had to know the area and pathways.  In order to get into the pond.

The pond was used by either high school kids under age drinking or some odd adults drinking in the bush. As the area was littered with empty booze bottles .  Not a lot but enough to make you notice.

I remember Hyde Park Road was a straight north south  road.  Running between Riverside Dr and Oxford Street. Where Hyde Parked dipped into the low area , there was an old white house on the west side of the road. A single old lady lived there.  She backed onto the Byron Bog.  I think her name was Miss Smith but I am not totally sure. I memory serves me right she was what they use to call a Spinster. Not politically correct. 

One thing I remember from Westdale is all the safety stuff that was taught. The stop drop and roll  for fires ,but more importantly , don't talk to strangers , getting into strangers cars was bad. Then the trick or treating cautions about stuff in homemade candies. 

As a kid back then, I remember thinking , Frankie  must have known the person and taken a ride to get out of the weather.  As again thinking like a kid from back then, no adult is going to catch a kid running in that bush. We knew the area well and knew the paths and opening through the thorn bushes were real small.. Tight areas for an adult to go through.

The interaction between the police and us kids back then was good. In fact many of us became police officers later in life because of this situation.  Most now have long since retired.

The fellow walking beside S/Sgt Shipley looks like the late Deputy Chief Fred Bruce. No doubt an Inspector or Superindent rank back in 1968 .

Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #356 on: September 02, 2015, 04:36:14 PM »
Does anyone else remember the search parties taking the neighbourhood kids with them to show them the forts and treeforts to search in?  I seem to remember something of the sort, which goes along with it not being treated immediately as an abduction.

I remember the police search. I was 13 in 1968. Grade 8 in Mr Pickles class. If memory serves me right they expanded the search area days later.  For some reason I remember being at Wonderland Gardens, and walking the field areas from Springbank Drive up to Commissioners Rd with the police. If I recall there were a lot of Dads with their kids walking lines looking for anything.

The area had expanded to Byron and east.  I remember telling Mr Pickles about tree forts, As most of the forts were up in old oak trees surrounded by large growths of thorn bushes. It seemed like every block of kids back then had their own set of forts and territory.

jensen

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #357 on: September 03, 2015, 03:24:05 AM »
I was 16 when Frankie was taken.  Though the concentration was on the field and trails surrounding the school that first day, you are correct, the search radiated out the following days.  It is believed that Frankie got into a car on Hyde Park Rd. and it is my belief that he was forced.  Frankie would not take a ride with a stranger. 
I had Mr. Pickles for grade 8 too.  I don't recall ever seeing him out on searches.  I've studied the pictures posted here and I don't see him.  I do remember seeing lots of fathers out with their kids searching alongside the police for days on end.  That was a time of tree forts and lean-tos, staying out till dark, fishing and building fires at the riverbank....an idyllic time that came to a sudden halt.  I remember skating on Fergies pond and some of the older boys playing hockey there.  The interaction between kids and police at that time was good...we respected, and had a healthy fear of the police...you didn't want them to show up at your door but you knew that they were your friend if you needed them.  Thanks again Bucky.

Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #358 on: September 03, 2015, 01:52:54 PM »
The age of innocence left in the time around 1968 .  Before the murders in west London . We never locked our doors.  After we kids had to have house keys.

No adults talked to us kids about the news. They all seemed to talk in hushed silence, no one mentioned serial killer. My guess they didn't know the term.

Most of the parents on Larkspur were survivors of the Second World War.  Either as kids in Britain or Europe who arrived after the war. Or like my dad a veteran RCAF  1939. -1945.  Though death was no stranger to many of them, the murders upset them.  Ages 30 to 45 as parents.

I guess that's where all the fort building started from.  Cub Scouts , Scouts, Army Cadets. 

Very sorry for your loss. I remember meeting once a sister of Frankie's . Her name was Pia. She was a little older than I was, I felt so sad for her and her family. It bothered lots of us as he was a student at Westdale.

Your right Mr Pickles didn't t go on any searches.  I think my dad told me that he meaning Mr Pickles had some heart issues. The stress of this missing child must have exacerbated his condition.

A strange but odd coincidence.  The area where Frankie was found and where the Leishman boy went missing. The land north of the bridge over the Thames river . Was where the Number 9 Army Cadet Corps camped.  I know this as in I think it was 1969 or 1970 we had pitched tents , and did outdoor training .  Lots of 14 to 16 year old guys there from Oakridge Secondary School.

The area must have been know and surveyed by a member of the Cadet Service of Canada officers Cadre. Before the Federal Governmnt would allow military equipment on that area of land. 

Bucky

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Re: Frankie Jensen - London, ON - Murdered - 1968
« Reply #359 on: September 04, 2015, 02:41:48 PM »
Good Morning Chickapey and Foghorn
As I've stated, Frankie would never have gone willingly with a stranger and I believe he must have been forced into a car.  I doubt that a woman in the vehicle would have made a difference unless she was someone he knew.   At this point, I'd say anything is possible and all avenues should be explored...what is there to lose?  Again, many thanks to all of you for attacking these cases from every angle.

I had to do some serious deep thinking about those times at Westdale.  In 1962 I started grade 2 moving into the area. The right of passage was being shown the trails that lead to Westdale by all the other kids. Very few adults would have lnown about all the trails.

As the years rolled by we all heard about a peeping Tom  in the woods .  Though I never saw him. 

There was almost a dividing line of territory. The kids that lived east of the school hardly ever went west past the school towards Hyde Park.  They use to say you would get roughed up by big kids at Fergies Pond. It was almost a right of passage when you were old enough to catch tad poles at Fergies Pond.

Getting into a strangers car would be a huge NO for us back then.  It was drummed into our heads don't talk to strangers.  Here though is the issue. A lot of us respected someone in a uniform. Like a postal worker , custodian, as we saw them in our schools all the time. A false sense of security.

Oakridge Acres and the surrounding area was a confusing labyrinth of streets. I remember a fire truck getting lost trying to find a house. So who ever was in the area bent on this evil, must have known the area, from residing in or stalking out the area. Who else would have known the trails kids took to School.

The Army Cadets used the area at the junction of Valley View Rd and Thorndale Rd 28 for camping and training.

This area is in the middle of no where hence the use for the military. Unless you resided in the area how on earth would you know where to drop off FJ.  Unless you as a serial killer had taken time to survey disposal areas. 

Which makes me think , in a farm community wouldn't someone notice a strange vehicle.  As kids we noticed other parents cars and that was in a subdivision full of vehicles.

The one thing I keep flashing back to , and it could be my memory playing tricks. Is a white Plymouth fury 4door. I have no idea as to why though.  I  never at age 13 hung in the Hyde Park area. But for some reason I'm thinking the parking lot at the Oakridge Arena.  I was into building model cars and planes as a kid, and will confess I had a huge Match Box collection of cars. I was a stickler for detail , I think it annoyed some people, Hey that's a Fairlane, that's a Galaxy, or that is an Impala.

I wish I could help more .

« Last Edit: September 04, 2015, 02:49:51 PM by Bucky »