What’s The Connection Between The Sunday Comics - And A Killer?
Sketches by Pulitzer Prize-Winning Cartoonist Berkeley Breathed to Help AMERICA’S MOST WANTED Solve Murder Mystery Saturday, April 7, on FOX
Sunday morning, millions of newspaper readers will eagerly open the comics section to read the latest adventures of "Opus" by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Berkeley Breathed. But Breathed hopes that a lot of people take a look at another drawing he recently created, a picture of a crime scene drawn exclusively for the Saturday, April 7 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) edition of FOX’s AMERICA’S MOST WANTED. The drawing is part of AMW’s effort to help solve a cold-blooded murder in Austin, TX - a murder that hit close to home for Breathed.
In the late 1970s, Breathed was part of a vibrant community of young artists in Austin who contributed photographs to a calendar project known as "The Book of Days." The community was rocked by tragedy in April 1979, when a talented musician named Michael Cahill was murdered during a burglary. On the same night, someone also broke into the apartment of a "Book of Days" contributor who lived in Cahill’s building. When members of the community began comparing notes, they realized that many contributors to the calendar had recently been burglary victims, among them Breathed. Someone had turned "The Book of Days" into a list of targets. Police believe the same person killed Cahill.
No suspect was ever identified, but Breathed and the other artists touched by this crime have never given up hope that Cahill’s murder will be solved. Now, they’ve turned to AMERICA’S MOST WANTED, in an effort to breathe new life into the 28-year investigation. "I haven’t been involved in many crimes or touched by many crimes," Breathed tells AMW. "When it happens, there is definitely a desire for closure. Nothing is more annoying than murderers getting away with it."
Breathed took a break from preparing for the April 2007 publication of his latest book, "Mars Needs Moms!," to create a drawing for AMW producers of the scene at his Austin apartment the night he became a burglary victim. He hopes it will help jog someone’s memory, and lead police in a new direction. "I don’t have any pictures from that period, but I do have the mental images," Breathed says. "I thought the best way to do it was to put a sketch down. It’s how I do everything now. Give me enough time, I’ll turn it into a photo-realistic rendering and give it to the police."