Alcatraz: Did Frank Morris/Anglins Make It?
It may have been the most secure site to build a military installation ever conceived, well within sight of land, a small island made up of solid bedrock, alone in a bay of changing sandy depths and a narrow passage to the Pacific Ocean. That narrow passage also creates a venturi effect on the tides coming and going past Alcatraz - once the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons most secure complex; The Rock.
The Titanic was unsinkable, the '69 Mets had no chance at the World Series and Alcatraz was considered escape-proof just because of the dangerous currents in the San Francisco Bay. It must have been extra difficult for those incarcerated in total silence on The Rock, to sometimes hear the sounds of music and laughter wafting over on a cool evening breeze from the many piers and nightspots in San Fran. Fun and freedom, within sight and earshot and they may have well been on another planet. Such was incarceration at Alcatraz.
The May Have Made It
In 1979 Clint Eastwood starred in a prison escape movie based on a real-life attempt carried out in 1962 by Frank Morris (Eastwood in the movie) and the Anglin Brothers John and Clarence.
Their story has also been depicted a number of times on cable television, stations that deal with history, law and so on. Recall they're the ones that picked out a larger hole in their tiny cells at the vent. They stole hair from the prison barber shop and utilized other foraged contraband to fashion dummy heads, electric drills, and a rubber raft and life jackets made from raincoats glued together with rubber cement.
Raise your hand if you've ever messed with rubber cement and whether or not you'd trust your life to it.
Letter From Anglin Appears in 2013
There was always speculation as to whether the trio made it. No bodies were recovered which isn't really unusual in San Francisco Bay drownings, as bridge jumpers and other Alcatraz escape attempts proved. Of course, remnants of the make-shift raft, plywood paddles, and other items were found floating in the bay waters, but no sign of the men who set off a west coastwide alert once guards discovered the dummy heads in their cell beds at breakfast headcount.
In 2013 a letter was sent to the San Fran Police Department (the one Dirty Harry worked for - Eastwood was big on N California stories) from a so-called John Anglin. In the letter, he admitted the 1962 escape. Part of the terse message contained the sentence "Yes we all made it that night but barely!” Chilling.
Anglin also states he has cancer, is 83 (in 2013) and was in bad shape. I suppose if this is the legit Anglin, he just wanted the world to know they did make it.
Kind of makes you think about the whereabouts of America's only unsolved airline hijacking case of 1972 when D.B. Cooper parachuted into the west coast wilderness from a 727 in a business suit with a pair of Ray-Bans a fortune in cash tied to his leg.
D.B. Cooper always gets the most style points, in a league with John Dillinger.
The 1962 Alcatraz escape is an interesting and famous case, and crime buffs may want to check out Anglin's letter and further details here.