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Amy Umble is health reporter for The Free Lance-Star

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An unusual request: Would the cancer center at MWH do a CT scan of a dinosaur egg?

Jon Bachman of Stafford County believes his dinosaur egg may be 70 million years old.

The request was an unusual one: Would Dr. John Chinault and the staff at the Regional Cancer Center do a CT scan of a dinosaur egg?

Chinault, radiation oncologist at the center at Mary Washington Hospital, said this week that he had never scanned anything other than a human being and was curious about the egg. He found an open spot on the CT schedule and volunteered to do the scan for free as a kind of community service.

Jon Bachman describes himself as an “active amateur paleontologist.”

“It was very exciting for me,” he said. “Ever since I was a little boy, I’ve loved dinosaurs.”

The egg belonged to Jon Bachman, a Stafford County resident and self-described “active amateur paleontolgist.” He had owned it for 28 years and had long wondered if anything was inside.

Turns out there was. The CT scan showed what appeared to be pieces of bone inside the fossilized egg. Apparently, it contained the remnants of a 70 million-year-old baby dinosaur.

Chinault said about a dozen people, including Bachman, were huddled in the control room at the cancer center last week when the CT images began to appear. Chinault said that when it became apparent that the egg had a prize inside, Bachman got excited.

“He was like a 10-year-old,” Chinault said. “It was great.”

(For more on Bachman and his dinosaur egg, see the story soon in the paper.)