April 20, 2007

Bird-watcher discovers body on Scusset Beach

staff writer
SANDWICH - A woman on a solitary birding expedition yesterday at Scusset Beach came upon a shocking discovery.

Investigators gather around the body of a young man found yesterday afternoon on Scusset Beach in Sandwich.
(Ron Schloerb/Cape Cod Times)

Kathryn Doyon of Plymouth was busy watching for unusual birds that sometimes appear after a storm when she spotted the body of a nearly naked man lying on the beach in a strange position. The feet were up on the sand and waves were washing over the upturned face, she said.  In a panic, she tried to dial 911 on her cell phone, but was too flustered to place the call. She called her husband instead.

''She was screaming,� said her husband, Paul Mello.

''I wasn't sure if I should try to pull him out of the water or what,� Doyon said.  At 4:30 p.m., Doyon did manage to alert the police.

Investigators don't know exactly how long the man had been dead before the remains were discovered, according to Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael O'Keefe. Last night, officials were still trying to identify the body, as well as the circumstances that led to the man's demise, O'Keefe said.

Two Coast Guard helicopters circled the area for several hours searching for any other mariner who may have been with the deceased man, or any sign of a boat wreck.  The helicopters found nothing, Petty Officer Luke Pinneo said.  The Coast Guard had no reports of a missing person, or a Mayday or a man overboard alert. They could find no flares or any other clues of a maritime disaster, Pinneo said. O'Keefe said a few articles of clothing found on or near the body could help identify the remains.  Doyon said the deceased man appeared to be young, possibly in his 20s. His face was ruddy. But the body was not bloated or decomposed, she said.  She also saw a black, partially deflated raft near the body.  State police Lt. Bill Powers did say the man was not a windsurfer.

K.C. Myers can be reached at kcmyers@capecodonline.com.

(Published: April 20, 2007)


Cape Cod Times
April 20, 2007

College student found dead at Scusset Beach

A body found at Scusset Beach later IDed at Daniel Barclay is put into a coroners van   Frank Paparo 
SANDWICH - A body that washed up at Scusset Beach has been identified as a Massachusetts Institute of Technology student, 22-year old Daniel Barclay (right). His grandmother told the Times he was a third generation M.I.T. student who was excited about a new children's toy he and his class had developed. Officials are still investigating the circumstances of his death. He was said to be an avid bird watcher and officials found a small black inflatable raft he had purchased near where his body was found. 
Meanwhile, officials still have not been able to identify another body that washed up in Edgartown on Martha's Vineyard. They have ruled out the possibility of it being one of the crewmembers from the ill fated fishing vessel Lady of Grace. Cape & Islands District Attorney Michael O'Keefe has refused to release any details on the discovery. Other missing persons cases are being compared to see if the victim is one of them.

April 20, 2007

Grandmother mourns grandson�s death on Scusset

The last time Paula Kayton spoke to her grandson, he was excited about a novel children�s toy he designed with his class at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

He was working with a toy manufacturer and was supposed to present the design the next day.  That was Sunday night.

Yesterday the body of Daniel Barclay, 22, washed ashore on Scusset Beach, according to Kayton. The distraught grandmother said the family received word this morning that the young man�s body was Barclay�s.

The cause of death was drowning, said Cape & Islands District Attorney Michael O'Keefe, who also confirmed the death.

�This kid just won awards all over the place,� she said in a phone interview. �He was just a brilliant, brilliant person.�

Barclay was a third-generation MIT student with more awards than his grandmother could count. She described the talented California native as a brilliant, energetic child with a great sense of humor who went by �Dan� to his friends on MIT�s Parliamentary Debate Team.  Kayton said the family still did not know how or why Barclay�s body ended up in the ocean, but she said he did purchase a black inflatable raft Saturday. The raft was found next to him on the beach, she said.

As an avid birdwatcher herself, she was grateful to the fellow birdwatcher who discovered and reported Barclay�s body.

- By Hilary Russ

April 21, 2007

Body found on Cape beach identified

SANDWICH - The last time Paula Kayton spoke to her grandson, he was excited. He had designed a walk-in doll house made of inflatable pieces - perhaps the perfect project for a quirky, brilliant student who collected wacky travel souvenirs - with his class at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was supposed to present the invention the next day and was working with a toy manufacturer.

Two weeks later, the body of Daniel Barclay, a 22-year-old, third-generation MIT student, washed ashore on Scusset Beach.

The body of MIT student Daniel Barclay, 22, washed ashore Thursday on Scusset Beach.

What happened between the call to Kayton and the discovery of Barclay's body is a mystery.

''His life was set to be great,� Kayton said in a telephone interview yesterday. ''We're all distraught.�

Family members had been searching for Barclay, a lanky kid with a wry sense of humor, for about a week. His parents had flown to Cambridge from their California home to pepper the area with flyers of their missing boy.

Yesterday, the worst was confirmed. Cape and Island's District Attorney Michael O'Keefe said the cause of death was drowning, though foul play was not suspected. The manner of death was listed by the state medical examiner as ''pending toxicology,� O'Keefe said, adding that screens for drugs, alcohol and other substances were routine.

Barclay's body showed no signs of trauma. State police investigators ''will try to track his last movements as best they can,� O'Keefe said.

Kayton said Barclay bought some camping gear and a small, black inflatable raft from Wal-Mart the day before she last spoke to him. A raft was found on the beach near his body. Family members said he had talked of going on an ''adventure,� and they think he may have been making a dry run.  They did not suspect suicide because police also found a bucket near his body, which he could have used to bail himself out, Kayton said.

Though he was an Eagle Scout, he was more drawn to libraries than camp grounds, his aunt Betty Kerns said. A California native, he won a local ''Quiz Kids� tournament four years in a row with his team from Menlo-Atherton High School, in Silicon Valley near Stanford University. He was also on the cross-country team in high school, his family said, and he has a younger sister at the University of California at Berkeley.

At MIT, Barclay had already earned a bachelor's of science in economics last year and was set to get a joint bachelor's and master's of science degree in political science this spring in his fifth year at the prestigious institution.

But he was hardly a stuffy egghead. At a debate in January with his beloved MIT Parliamentary Debate Team, he rapped his response to the question of whether municipal buses should be free. Clad in flip-flops amid debaters in stiff suits, he rapped:

    For the rich 50 cents is a paltry sum
    For the poor it's a higher proportion of IN-come
    THEY can't pay the charge with ease
    For them it's HELL paying these bus fees

''He was a very good debater,� said Adam Goldstein, president of the debate team. ''He had a good sense of humor. He was always joking around.�

''Part of the beauty of Daniel is that he never took himself seriously,� said Kerns, whose twin sister, Sue Kayton, is Daniel's mother. ''He was the most irreverent in the family. I'd always look to Daniel as an example of somebody who could apply himself and do well and maintain a sense of humor.�

''This kid just won awards all over the place,� his grandmother said. ''He was just a brilliant, brilliant person.�  Paula Kayton is an avid birdwatcher and said the family thanked the fellow birdwatcher who discovered and reported Barclay's body in the water.  ''It's very sad. But we're very grateful to this woman,� Kayton said, crying.

As Barclay's mother, Sue, cleaned out his dorm room in Ashdown House, she decided to give away most of her son's belongings, Kerns said. But family members wanted to keep his collection of travel souvenirs. Every time he went on a trip, which he did often with his debate team, he searched hard to find the tackiest souvenirs possible, Kerns said.

''It had to be the epitome of bad taste,� she said. ''He has the most amazing collection of absolutely horrible souvenirs.�  She wanted the bobblehead Dudley Do-Right doll from Vancouver, but she made due with the tam-o'-shanter golf club cover from Scotland that chirps bagpipe music when touched.  ''I want to remember him by that God awful Scottish little bag-piping souvenir,� Kerns said. ''I'm just going to remember that fun kid with a zest for life.�

Hilary Russ can be reached at hruss@capecodonline.com.

(Published: April 21, 2007)