As Jorge Miranda was searching through a dumpster for recyclables in Merced, California, early one fall morning in 2004, he heard something moving. As he was lifting a few pizza boxes away to take a closer look, he got scared. Then the neighborhood heard him screaming and shouting. He just could not believe what he saw lying at the bottom of the trash receptacle.
Luckily, local resident Jimmy Alvarez and his wife, Annette, were among those neighbors who heard the commotion. After hearing Jorge’s screams just before 6:00 a.m. on October, 7, 2004, Jimmy ran out to the dumpster. It was located in the parking lot outside his home in the Sunnyside Apartments complex in South Merced.