Ever since the late ’60s, the zombie movie has been the king of the horror-movie heap. Dozens of well-made and very scary movies have been made, and the genre has spread to books, comics, video games, and beyond.
Zombies are so popular, people make up rules about how to survive a zombie apocalypse and fantasize about how long they could last when the dead rise, despite the complete improbability of animated, flesh-eating corpses. I mean, a virus can’t affect a dead person at all. They’re dead, they’ve got no blood pumping or respiration or brain activity for a virus to take advantage of.
Still, bet you didn’t know Lubbock had a zombie connection, didja? Way, way back in the 1920s, there was a small mortuary that, one day, turned up with an unexpected deficit of dead people — they’d had six the night before, but when they got in the next morning, they were all gone.
The initial assumption was that someone had broken in and stolen the bodies — the back door was open, the place was a mess, and it looked like an unusually weird burglary. There were no leads, and the authorities weren’t able to find any of the bodies for a day or two.
After that, all the bodies turned up within hours of each other. One was lying on the porch of his family home, one was lying on her bed at home, one was on the floor of the office he used to work, one was inside the sanctuary of the church she attended, one was found at the home of his mistress (!!!), and the last one was found seated at the wheel of his new automobile.
None of them were ambulatory, none of them ate anyone. No one knew how they got there, and the police never found anyone they could say was responsible for the burglary of the mortuary. The police and the rest of the community wrote it off as a sick prank, and that’s what it might have been.
But it’s interesting that all of the bodies were found at locations that had been important to them in life. That isn’t the type of thing you expect a bunch of high school pranksters to come up with, is it?
Ultimately, there was no real explanation offered by anyone for what happened. Were they zombies? Probably not, I guess — it does sound an awful lot like a really tasteless joke — but there’s no way to be sure, is there?