CLEVELAND, Ohio - Twenty-five years has passed, but Lou Gentile still wonders about what he really found inside the walls of Wexler's Tavern in Ohio.
While stringing electrical wiring through the walls to the basement, Gentile -- the former owner -- and his partner made a startling discovery.
"The very first bag that he opened, that had split, I looked in and it had a hand in it," he said. "It was as white as my shirt."
Seven football-sized packages neatly wrapped in red butcher paper were found.
"These are human bones, and then all of the history of the place kind of came rushing to me that there might be some connection between Hoffa's death and some of the people that were around at the time," Gentile said. "I'm thinking we're going to be rich if this is Hoffa's bones."
Could there be a connection?
Hoffa vanished in July 1975 and his body has never been found.
Gentile said he called Cleveland police, but was told to "Get whatever else is up there out, and sweep all of that stuff out and throw it away."
So, Gentile said, he took their advice and threw the bones away.
If the bones were to be tested, and the bar become a crime scene, Gentile said he would have faced losing thousands of dollars.
"I just made a business decision I guess you could say," he said.
Then, last March, the current owner decided to tear out part of the wall to try to find more bones.
He found an old matchbook from the Palm Desert Lodge in California.
"I checked it out on the Internet and ironically it said, 'The house that Jimmy Hoffa and the teamsters built.' Unbelievable," said Doug Graziano.
Local 4 Defenders investigate Hoffa mystery:
- Alleged Mafia boss talks about where Hoffa's buried
- Secret meetings advance Hoffa investigation
- Zerilli's Hoffa burial site gains some credit with old map
- Was Hoffa tipster involved in family feud?
- Is former underboss telling whole story about Hoffa?
- Former Hoffa friend wants case solved
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