Writespiration: Two mummies from 1942 found in a Swiss glacier

Marcelin and Francine Dumoulin left to hike in the Alps on a summer day in 1942, never to be seen again for 75 years when a worker on a ski lift noticed two mummified bodies in the melting ice.

Today NPR published a story about the two bodies dressed in WWII-era clothing and discovered last Friday within the shrinking Tsanfleuron glacier. The story itself didn’t captivate me nearly as much as the photo: Eerie without being overly graphic.

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GLACIER 3000/Keystone via AP

The Dumoulin’s youngest daughter, now in her 70s, said the discovery gave her a sense of relief, but I can’t imagine how she feels seeing the photos. She’s not the only one to experience finding a long-lost loved one in shrinking glaciers: NPR listed a few other cases, including three brothers who disappeared in 1926 and found in 2012 on the Valais’ Aletsch glacier; two Japanese climbers who disappeared in 1970 and found at the foot of the Valais’ Matterhorn glacier in 2015; and a German skier missing since 1963 and found in the Graubunden’s Morteratsch glacier just last year.

Centuries-old glaciers begin to disappear and decades-old bodies reappear: As climate change threatens our future, it’s also helping us connect with our past.

Sounds like a good theme for a story.

 

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