World-renowned forensic anthropologist Dr. William Bass mesmerized an audience of approximately 450 people at Lincoln Memorial University (LMU) last week that included students, faculty, staff and the public.
Bass, famous for being a founder of the “Body Farm” at the University of Tennessee (UT), is Professor Emeritus of the UT Forensic Anthropology Program. Although retired for several years now, Bass, 84, has not slowed down. He is a much sought-after speaker and author, and the audience at LMU’s Duke Hall Auditorium was eager to hear him.
“I think it’s great that LMU offered the community the opportunity to attend a lecture by such a prominent speaker at no cost,” said LeAnn Korth. “I have admired Dr. Bass for many years and am thrilled that I had the opportunity to hear him speak.”
Bass spoke of three specific cases he’s worked on, sharing photos and anecdotes about different aspects of each. He worked on his first case in 1954. His line of work includes helping law enforcement officials identify remains and determine causes of death. One of the most famous cases he worked on was the “Zoo Man” Huskey case, in which several prostitutes were found dead on Cahaba Lane in 1992 in Knoxville’s only serial killing case. Huskey was convicted of sex crimes related to the women, but was never convicted in their deaths. He is serving a 64-year sentence.
“I’ve identified around 700 people over the years,” he said. “I like the cases that teach you something.”
After his presentation, Bass answered questions from the audience. He then made himself available to sign books and take photos.
“His presentation was incredibly informative and entertaining. For someone with so much experience and so much knowledge, he was able to connect with everyone in the audience,” said Jade Gallimore, a student at the DeBusk School of Osteopathic Medicine. “The only disappointing thing about the whole evening was when it ended.”