Woman found dead in Heritage Park

Neighbors, police say she was a local transient

She was known to neighbors as the woman who sat every morning on a park bench in Heritage Park in Palo Alto. She was found dead near her bench on Saturday, Dec. 21.

Gloria Bush, 72, the woman whom neighbors described as homeless, died in the shadow of St. Thomas Aquinas Church. A passerby found her at 7:17 a.m. and reported to police that Bush was on the ground. She did not appear to be breathing. She was amid her belongings at the corner of Waverley Street and Homer Avenue.

Neighbors said she frequented the park for a long time, and they shook their heads sadly at her death.

Police said there was no sign of foul play.

"There is no sign of a crime at all," Palo Alto Police Sgt. Kara Apple said.

Bush appeared to be a local transient, she said, but police could not provide further information. Her death is being investigated by the Santa Clara County Coroner's Office, which has positively identified her.

Further information will be posted as it is made available by city and county officials.

Anyone who may have information about the woman is asked to call the Palo Alto police 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413. Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to or sent by text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984.


Posted by resident, a resident of Downtown North
on Dec 21, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Rest in peace. I hope that the newspaper can find out more about who she was and print an obituary.

Posted by Hmmm, a resident of East Palo Alto
on Dec 21, 2013 at 12:59 pm

Hmmm is a registered user.

In one of the richest areas of the planet, close to a church, near the police department, in a neighborhood full of wealthy people in homes with heat, clean beds and plenty of comforts, not far from holiday revelers who've been eating expensive food in warm restaurants, many holiday shopping and enjoying this gorgeous weather, this poor woman passed away alone. May she rest in peace.

Posted by Oh, Please, Hmmm, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 21, 2013 at 1:10 pm

People in third world countries have it much worse. America has so many opportunities which people take for granted. Obviously, even her own family gave up on her. May she rest in peace.

Posted by Hmmm, a resident of East Palo Alto
on Dec 21, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Hmmm is a registered user.

[Portion removed.] It's much easier to blame an older homeless woman for not taking advantage of the many opportunities presented to her living in Palo Alto as someone without resources. Merry Christmas!

Posted by Craig Laughton, a resident of College Terrace
on Dec 21, 2013 at 1:55 pm

[Post removed.]

Posted by Mater Dei,, a resident of Professorville
on Dec 21, 2013 at 2:07 pm

Requiescat in Pace, Jane Doe.

Posted by Barnacle, a resident of Midtown
on Dec 21, 2013 at 3:02 pm

"Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well- warmed, and well-fed."

― Herman Melville

Posted by calling, a resident of South of Midtown
on Dec 21, 2013 at 4:00 pm

[Post removed.]

Posted by PAmoderate, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 21, 2013 at 8:27 pm

PAmoderate is a registered user.

[Post removed.]

If you were a member and logged in you could track comments from this story.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Palo Alto quietly gets new evening food truck market
By Elena Kadvany | 3 comments | 2,625 views

On Tour - The Highly Selective Liberal Arts Colleges: Occidental, Pitzer, and Scripps
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 1 comment | 1,641 views

See Me. Hear Me. Donít Fix Me.
By Chandrama Anderson | 2 comments | 1,442 views

Foothills Park: a world away
By Sally Torbey | 9 comments | 1,383 views

Candidate Kickoff Events: Public, not just for supporters
By Douglas Moran | 6 comments | 809 views