Friends, family and police lit tapers in the gathering dusk Sunday, sharing stories of William "Huey" Huson, and vowing to bring his killer to justice.
The Talent cab driver was killed a year ago Sunday on his 58th birthday. The anniversary vigil was held at dusk in the field near the Medford International Airport where Huson's body was found.
Her husband was the love of her life, a diehard Oakland Raiders fan, an excellent cook and a "kind, caring person who would give you the shirt off his back," said his widow, Susan Huson.
"I want it to be known that I am not going to rest until this person is caught and brought to justice," she said.
Valley Cab lost radio contact with Huson after he picked up a passenger at Howiee's on Front and reported him missing at 1:02 a.m. Oct. 21. Huson's cab was located at Ninth and Almond streets four hours later. His body was found in a field off Helo drive, near East Vilas Road just west of Highway 62. He had been shot in the head.
Medford Police Chief Tim George and Det. Tony Young also attended the ceremony. The officers wanted show respect to Huson's family, and see if they could scare up new leads. George and Young expressed frustration the case hasn't yet yielded a suspect.
But that "frustration keeps the fire burning," George said.
"This case will get solved. We're still chasing this. We're still working every tip we get," he said. "We don't have a suspect at this time, but that could change any minute."
Huson picked up a fare at 10:41 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20, 2012 in front of Howiee's on Front in Medford. He reported he would be taking that fare to an unknown address on Vilas Road. The cab company dispatcher did not hear from him again and contacted police.
Officers responded and found Huson's cab, parked and unoccupied, in a parking lot near Ninth and Almond streets at 5:02 a.m. Oct. 21. Later that morning they found Huson's body.
In addition to finding her husband's killer, Susan Huson said she is determined to create a "Huey's Law" which would mandate all cabs to carry a video camera with a live feed back to the dispatch center.
"Every cab must have a camera in it," she said, adding if such a camera had been in her husband's cab "he might be here today."
Police have three times canvassed the neighborhood where the car was found. But so far no one has offered information that could lead to an arrest, Young said.
"Humans are creatures of habit. There's a reason that cab ended up in that neighborhood," George said.
Massive amounts of DNA evidence seized from more than a week spent performing a forensic analysis of Huson's cab is still being analyzed, Young said.
"It took us eight days to process the cab," Young said.
George likened the number of fingerprints pulled from the heavily-used vehicle to what might be seen on the front counter following a bank robbery.
Police believe the killer also stole a black leather shaving bag that Huson used to carry personal items in, including an electronic Cig2o vapor cigarette, a brown, bifold leather wallet, which held Huson's identification and some paperwork, and an undisclosed amount of cash.
Police have three times canvassed the neighborhood where Huson's cab was found. They are also still seeking an anonymous person who wrote the agency a letter shortly after Huson's murder.
Young said the letter was uniquely written. It was written in pencil on ribbon paper like that used in cash registers to print receipts. The paper has pink ink on one side, which commonly signifies that the end of the roll is near. The envelope, addressed to the "Police Cheif" (sic), is made out of notebook paper and taped together. It is not signed, and there is no return address.
Huson's family members repeatedly asked that anyone with information come forward.
Anyone with information on the case is urged to call 541-770-4783 or visit www.tipsubmit.com.
Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or firstname.lastname@example.org.