On April 27, 1986, Wayne B. Tease and a friend were exploring private property south of Cripple Creek, mountainous land pockmarked with abandoned mine shafts. While they were separated, Wayne fell into the Mary McKinney mine and was killed. Emergency crews tried for five days to recover the body, then it was decided it was too dangerous to continue.
His parents, Theodore A. and Janet Kunz, then living in Oreland, Penn., appealed to their senator for help to confirm that Wayne's body was in the mine. The Bureau of Mines and Land Reclamation used a special camera to locate the body, which was at about the 800-foot level. The mine was declared a burial site in 1986 and it was filled and sealed.
The mine is located about 2.2 miles south of Bennett Avenue in Cripple Creek on the left side of Highway 67, above the high timber retaining wall. The property is owned by the Cripple Creek and Victor Gold Mining Company, which requires visitors to be escorted to the gravesite. Visitors should check in at the CC&V security office.
According to GPS-derived geolocation (accurate to within 10 meters), the plaque's coordinates are 38°43'44.5"N and 105°09'45.8"W. The now-sealed Mary McKinney mine is several yards beyond the plaque, which reads:
Our Beloved Son, Brother, and Fiancé‚
WAYNE B. TEASE
©2014 Pikes Peak Genealogical Society