Meet the Cohens

THE MYSTERIOUS CASE OF THE COHENS
By Linda Maria Frank

Everything is relative. And some of us are finding out that we have more relatives in our lives than we thought. In this article, I would like to point out that everything is relatives. Take, for instance, the story of the Cohens, or Kohanim as they are known in the Jewish faith. The Kohanim are males who can trace their lineage back to the first Cohen, who was anointed by Aaron, the brother of Moses, dating back 3,300 years. The line is patrilineal, which means it is passes from father to son through the Y chromosome.…

CODIS

CODIS, the combined DNA index system, is a data bank consisting of the DNA from violent offenders. When a violent crime like rape, murder or assault is committed, and evidence from the scene, like blood, skin cells or semen is available, a DNA profile from that evidence is produced. …

Why Fire Island and Why The Madonna Ghost

By Linda Maria Frank
One of the first questions anyone asks me about the book is why I chose the title, The Madonna Ghost. Some readers think that it is a reference to the singer, Madonna. It is not. The original meaning of the word, Madonna, is an Italian formal form of address for a woman, meaning literally, my lady. It has come to refer to the Mother of Christ in the Christian religion as illustrated by many works of art. So, a Madonna figure is a mother figure, most commonly a mother with child.

Explosives

AND THEN, IT WENT KABOOM!
By Linda Maria Frank

Every high school chemistry student, studying the incredible nature of nitrogen bonds, has heard the story of Alfred Nobel and his creation of dynamite. As the Industrial Revolution chugged along, the need for faster and more powerful methods of construction became increasingly important.

The two know explosives at the time were black power (gun powder), a relatively low grade explosive, and nitroglycerine, powerful, unstable, and deadly dangerous to use. The key ingredient in these two is the nitrogen bonds in the chemical ingredients. When the bonds between nitrogen atoms and the atoms of other elements are broken, tremendous energy is released.

Forensic Trivia – Smithereens

Forensic Trivia: “Smithereens”
January 19, 2014
images (7)On Dec. 21, 1988, Pan American flight 103, originating in Frankfort, Germany landed at London’s Heathrow Airport, and after loading passengers and luggage, took off for New York’s JFK airport at 18:25 p.m. At approximately 19:02 p.m. air traffic control lost contact with it. A few seconds later the radar showed the plane’s blip on the screen fracture into five separate ones, trailing away from each other. The plane had exploded and the debris rained down on the Scottish town of Lockerbee.

243 passengers and 16 crew, dead, as well as 11 residents from Lockerbee.

This was one of the most famous plane crashes in history, both for the horror it was, the subsequent political implications, and the forensic investigation that ensued leading to the arrest and conviction of one of the terrorists involved.

The USA’s FBI, and the British equivalent of our NTSB, the Air Accidents Investigation Branch, laboriously collected every piece of wreckage from the plane, and pieced together the smithereens they found into a whole plane.