November 21, 2018
Column

New Sweden poisonings in focus on ‘Mystery ER’

Pretty good for a state that normally doesn’t get much attention from national media: Maine is drawing film crews again.

Now in its second season, the medical mystery show “Mystery ER” offers a look at what doctors go through as they’re up against the clock while they try to solve real-life emergency room cases.

A 2003 murder mystery in northern Maine was described at the time by one resident as something that would happen only on TV.

Well, now it’s going to be in living rooms across the country as part of the Discovery Health series.

Five years ago, residents of New Sweden were left in shock when someone spiked the coffee with arsenic at a Sunday social at the Gustaf Adolph Evangelical Lutheran Church. One man died and more than a dozen people were hospitalized at Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor.

At first, no one was sure what had happened. The FBI was called in to assist with the investigation, and eventually arsenic was identified as the cause of the illnesses.

Five days after the poisonings took place, Daniel Bondeson committed suicide and left a handwritten note saying that he was responsible and had acted alone.

The story is the perfect medical mystery for a show that re-enacts such cases and also informs viewers about dangers that could be lurking.

The filming crew is expected to be on the ground in Aroostook County next week and the show likely will air this summer.

To check out an episode of “Mystery ER,” tune in to Discovery Health at 8 p.m. Monday, March 31, to see how a tapeworm can mimic a brain tumor.

The History Channel also is about to debut a show that might hit close to home for many Mainers.

“Ax Men” is a spinoff of sorts of “Ice Road Truckers,” which followed six truck drivers as they navigated the frozen roads bringing supplies to Canadian diamond miners just miles from the Arctic Circle.

After you watched the first show, there wasn’t much left to see or learn, but the idea was interesting and “Ax Men” will be even better.

The show airs at 10 p.m. Sunday, March 9, and will follow four different logging crews through a season in northwest Oregon’s remote forests. The loggers are responsible for retrieving timber perched on mountainsides with too steep of an incline for access with machinery.

As a Maine girl from a family with plenty of loggers, I admit that I’ll be making the Man on the Couch watch this one.


Have feedback? Want to know more? Send us ideas for follow-up stories.

comments for this post are closed

You may also like