Death & Taxes

First Draft

  There is an old saying, I guess about equality, to the effect, "You can't escape death and taxes". That seems to be true, but there is one more:

  In the general area of Luzerne County, back in the mid 1970's, there was a sensational murder-suicide; a state trooper killed his wife and then himself. (I recently talked to a news reporter who remembered the case and is checking on the exact date.)

  We all come into this world on equal terms: naked and vulnerable. When it comes to family tragedy, something like a murder-suicide, class boundaries are meaningless: rich or poor, bureaucrat or peasant, it doesn't matter.

  Where is this leading? I dedicated this web site to Leslie R. Giannini. (I strive to reduce domestic violence. There is too much of it.)

  Recently, a friend of mine of over 10 years, her son committed murder-suicide on 01-29-2002. The picture below is from the Standard Speaker newspaper the following day. I believe the woman in the picture is the sister of the female victim.


  Breaking sequence for a moment, that day, after work at 2:30 pm, leaving the Garland plant in Freeland, I was heading back to Hazleton when I seen four police cruisers speeding by in the opposite direction towards Freeland within several minutes of traveling. (My first thought was a bad accident on the Interstate.) When I arrived at Bonnie's home, in passing conversation I mentioned it to her. Then, several hours later, on the six o-clock news, came the breaking story of a murder-suicide in Highland Village, near Freeland. (That's were I live.) I was in the kitchen and Bonnie was in the Living Room as the reporter gave sketchy information, claiming it took place early that morning. The names of the persons were not identified but gave their ages and of the three young children who were at school when it happened. All of a sudden I heard Bonnie say, "Oh my God! I think that's my son, Richy". I said "What?" (I didn't know her son lived there.) She called her daughter. A few minutes later a call came back. Her daughter called the State Police and it was confirmed. What a way to hear about personal tragedy.

  In all the years I've known Bonnie, over ten years, I've never met her son. She lived with me for two years, from 1990 to 1992. It seems her son got involved with drugs and she broke off relations with him long before I met her.

  Still and all, it was a shock to her. A detective called. I drove her down to the State Police Barracks that night to speak with him. The following day I was asked to be a pallbearer. Out of courtesy and respect for her family, I accepted.

  During my last visit with my daughter, I mentioned this tragedy to Denise, the chaperon. Why? In regards to my position on reducing domestic violence by speaking out, consider it balanced journalism.

  On this date, 02-28-2002, my one attorney called. In part, besides giving me excellent news, he mentioned that at the next hearing the incident in question will be discussed.

  That got me thinking. Two years ago, Carolyn's ex-husband committed murder-suicide. Did Children & Youth discuss the matter with Carolyn?

  So, why did I volunteer this information to Children & Youth? There are several reasons. Most of all, well, I'll speak about that shortly.

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Updated: 02-28-2002