The late summer of 1988 brought flash flooding to Saline Valley. On Nov. 12, 1988, a hiker stumbled upon a human skull. He marked the spot with a cairn and carried the skull to camp.
Tom Ganner, the new campground host, called the sheriff on his two-way radio. Sgt. Lucas found the skull jauntily arranged atop a picnic table with flowers in its eye sockets and a patch of moss for a hairpiece. "I quickly took care of that," he says.
Lucas, Mottweiler, Ganner and the hiker drove up the Corridor for miles, beyond where most of the searching took place in 1986. The hiker led the way up a dry wash, and Ganner soon found the second skull.
Then, in a narrow side channel of the wash, which easily could have been overlooked, the men discovered a grave-sized pile of rocks.
The next day a forensics team unearthed human remains, the underwire from a bra and the waistband from a pair of underwear. There was no sign of Louise's wedding ring or Barry's silver belt buckle, unique pieces that Korb, the jewelry maker at El Capitan, had handcrafted. And the forensics team found an item of spine-chilling significance: a handcuff key.
Dental records confirmed the remains were Barry and Louise. "Barry was our only child," the grieving Jules [Berman, father of Barry] said in a Nov. 16, 1988, Los Angeles Timesarticle. "It just leaves our lives completely empty."
...Some of Barry and Louise's fellow spiritualists believe that, in the truest sense, they are still alive. Healer-acupuncturist Mary Sullivan says, "We have a living master, his job is to take you back home — it doesn't matter how you die."
Jules Berman, who died in 1998, didn't enjoy such peace. Three years before he died, Berman told UCLA's oral history program that, because of the brutal killings of his son and daughter-in-law, "My philosophy is, if there's a God, he's not for me; he's for someone else."
Michael Westerman says his mom and Barry "were two souls headed in the same direction." That direction led them to the vanishing point.
Sant Mat teaches that the Bermans had the radiant form of the guru implanted in their consciousnesses at the time of initiation. This form supposedly was aware of everything that happened to them, and could communicate with the physical form of the guru at any time.