Morgan Sanders is many people. The Morgan Sanders who was an American painter, photographer, and author died in 2021. She wrote Alexander and the Magic Mouse. The Morgan Sanders who was a U. S. Representative from Texas died in 1956. Among other activities, he once published a weekly newspaper. Morgan Sanders is an actor who starred in Doctor Death 2 years ago. It is also the name of an actress who has been in The Matchbreaker. But the Morgan Sanders I wanted to know about was none of these. I saw this name on a cross on the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge 10 miles west of Taos, New Mexico, on August 10, 2021. Oh, Oh.
This was the 2nd time that Ruth and I have seen this impressive bridge and lively tourist attraction that spans a gorge 650 feet above the Rio Grande River. Most visitors stop at the bridge’s west end to buy trinkets, like jewelry, from vendors. This bridge is 1,272 feet long and spans a spectacularly deep abyss. Travelers stop at both ends of this bridge for a thrill and a free diversion. The brave walk halfway across it to a very high viewpoint on both sides. Ruth again had vertigo but made it to this vantage point before turning back to wait for me in our vehicle. On my way back to the car I spotted Morgan Sanders name for the 2nd time on a cross and wondered who she or he was.
Fame is fleeting. I found out who Morgan was on Google, page 12. The entry explained that a Taos business owner died at the Rio Grande Bridge on April 6, 2020. This cross was a memorial to her. Morgan Sanders was a 37-year-old massage therapist and landscaping business owner who was originally from Amarillo, Texas. She became an adult who loved the outdoors, traveled widely, and settled in Taos around 2018. Her car was found parked near the bridge and some kayakers found her body. She had apparently committed suicide by jumping off the Rio Grande Bridge in central New Mexico.
Bridges like this and The Golden Gate tend to become suicide magnets. More than 125 humans have committed suicide by jumping off this bridge in the past 20 years. It averages 2 to 3 deaths each year. Morgan’s memorial was one of 2 at this bridge’s east end. Now I know who Morgan Sanders was.