Authorities Believe Gary Haas, N5VGH, and Wife Killed by Escaped Convicts
The burned skeletal remains of Gary Haas, N5VGH, and his wife Linda were found in a charred camper on a remote ranch in eastern New Mexico on the morning of Wednesday, August 4. Authorities believe they were killed by escaped convicts, along with an accomplice, who had escaped from an Arizona prison on July 30. Authorities said that the Haas’ bodies and camper were found by a rancher on his property, not far from Santa Rosa, one of the New Mexico cities that the couple frequented; their truck was found in Albuquerque, 100 miles away.
Married about 35 years, the couple started out as high school sweethearts. They wed while Linda was still in college and Gary was in the US Air Force. Both followed career paths that led them to work at the General Motors plant in Oklahoma City, leaving when it closed down in 2006. After retirement, the couple took to camping, frequenting places in Colorado and New Mexico, often staying at state parks. According to Linda’s younger sister, it wasn’t unusual for the couple to take off for a month or so and go to Colorado with their pickup, travel trailer and dogs.
Two of the three escaped convicts have been captured: Tracy Province, 42 -- who was serving a life sentence for murder and robbery -- was captured Tuesday, August 10 in Meeteetse, Wyoming; Daniel Renwick, 36 -- who was serving two consecutive 22-year sentences for second-degree murder -- was captured August 1 in Colorado. The third escaped convict -- John McCluskey, 45 -- was serving a 15 year sentence for attempted second-degree murder, aggravated assault and the discharge of a firearm. He and accomplice Casslyn Welch, 44, are still on the loose; Welch is McClusky’s fiancée and cousin. -- Thanks to The Oklahoman, the Tucson Citizen and the Phoenix New Times for the information