I am absolutely thrilled to have been nominated for this Mystery Blogger Award by Rory, A guy called bloke, who is a fantastic blogger and definitely a blogging friend of mine, click on the link to check out his post:
“Mystery Blogger Award” is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging, and they do it with so much love and passion.
-Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog
-Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well
-Answer the 5 questions you were asked
-Tell your readers 3 things about yourself
-You have to nominate 10 – 20 people
-Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog
-Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question
-Share a link to your best post(s)
3 Things About Yourself!
I’ve been to the Isle of Wight about 20 times.
I have never been to New York
I often sing Patsy Cline songs at the top of my voice.
My chosen post:
Last year, I thought I would try my hand a writing a story in the style of Agatha Christie, that brilliant crime writer of the 20th Century. Click on the link below to read my take on the Murder Mystery genre.
I’ve been crying a lot lately. The world has been turned upside down and inside out. Chaos is everywhere. I don’t want to see anyone else lose their life. No more murders at the hands of the police. No retaliation killings of officers that are only guilty of wearing that uniform. No more hate mongers driving the races apart.
I understand the anger. I feel it too. It’s time to stop burning buildings and start building bridges.
When the weight of the world is too much to endure. I give it to God. I pray with much regularity. More so when my heart is heavy. My heart is so very heavy.
We believe people have hearts like ours. But that’s a dangerous fantasy. There’s a lot of hate in the world.
I want to pray for you. Yes you. If you have been discriminated against. I pray for things to change for the better so that you never must endure that again.
If you have lost someone to violence. I pray for you and your family.
If you’ve taken and taken and cannot take much more. I pray God shows you how strong you really are.
If you were raised to hate I pray that you see that you can make a change within.
If you believe we must stand against injustice and stand up for change. I pray God gives your voice wings to fly out into the world. I pray God gives your knees the strength needed when you feel weak. I pray God carries your message of love, equality and justice to open hearts.
There’s always hope. When it is too much to endure, give it to God.
I got up and checked my Facebook this morning. First thing I saw was an article about the CNN reporter and crew being arrested in Minneapolis. CNN reporter, Omar Jimenez along with his producer and photojournalist were arrested early this morning during a live report in Minneapolis.
Jimenez had his credentials on him. His fellow CNN reporter, Josh Campbell who was also on the scene reporting was told he was “okay and permitted to be in the area.” I’m appalled and saddened by the things I’m seeing in our country.
I cannot speak as anything other than what I am. I am a 50 year old Caucasian woman. I can’t walk in anyone else’s shoes. I can empathize and try to understand where another human being is coming from. To be perfectly honest, I knew prejudice still existed. But it was at one time easier to spot. The racists were loud and proud to spew their hatred. At least with skinheads or Neo-Nazis you could see them coming and knew who they were. I did naively think with not seeing or hearing much about these rallies of late that race relations was improving. I guess I was wrong.
It seems to me that many bigots are hiding in plain sight. They are quiet in the way that they are not out marching and leading hate rallies. But when they strike it is hard and it is devastating.
Now I feel that most people agree that George Floyd was murdered. It’s on video for all to see. He was subdued and there was absolutely no reason for what happened. None.
That being said, I admit I am seeing some things in a different light. One being, taking a knee during the National Anthem at sporting events by professional athletes. As a daughter of a retired military man who served over 20 years and a tour in Vietnam, I found it disrespectful. I understood it was within anyone’s rights that wanted to, to do so. I may not have agreed but I will fight for anyone’s right to freedom of thought, speech and expression. I understand what Kaepernick was trying to do now. He was leading a non-violent protest of injustice. A non-violent protest.
Look where we are today. The protesting has escalated into rioting and looting. Seems we have been here before. How many must die before we stand in solidarity against injustice? I do not condone the violence or looting. Do not take what I’m about to say as if I do. I want every Caucasian American to imagine what it is like to see injustices being perpetrated on your fellow man of color. I want you to imagine watching them for years, decades plus being murdered for no other reason than that they were black. I want you to imagine driving and getting lost only to end up in a dominantly white area and being pulled-over. I want you to imagine having to raise your children to be leery of law enforcement. I want you to imagine seeing all this and so much more and for it to be ignored for it to only happen time and time again. How angry would you be? At what point would you lash out? I guess we will never know.
It’s time we stand up and speak out! It’s time for our silence to be replaced with speaking up against injustice. It’s time for everyone. Everyone! We cannot allow this injustice to continue. We cannot forget George Floyd. Or all the ones who were killed at the hands of those we put our trust in to protect us. We must stand and see that justice is done.
In closing let me say, silence is deadly. It’s killing our own people. Ignoring what is happening does not make it go away. It keeps it going.
Today I took Clifford to a nearby Historical town. We had a nice walk and enjoyed the scenery. It was a beautiful little adventure to one of my favorite places. Clifford also pulled a Houdini out of his seatbelt. He’s no longer allowed to ride in the front seat as he’s gotten too big. But he had to get as close to me as possible. Smart fellow!
Beautiful girl, when you are finished falling, after you hit rock bottom and watch yourself come apart into a million pieces, no one is staying to help you collect yourself, no one is sticking around to pick through your pieces to decide which parts of you are worth keeping. That’s for you to decide. So stay down for as long as you need to. This is the most important part. Take your time. Pay attention. You already broke. So the easy part is over. Go slow…. I know, you thought the breaking was the most painful chapter. It wasn’t. Turn the page. The next part is much longer. It’s the healing. The rise. The comeback. It’s the birth of the new you. And it’s not easy. But you are strong and brave and worth it. You’ll have to leave a lot of yourself behind, you’ll have to let go of all the parts of you that you’ve outgrown. We’re not making ourselves small anymore. We’re not bending to fit where we don’t belong anymore. Do you hear me? We’re going all in. Count your wounds, every scar ripped open, every drop of blood you bled like a promise, every tear you cried like a bet in the name of crossing your whole heart, your whole soul, was all for this moment. Right here. Right now. You had to hurt like that to get here to this version of you who knows exactly who she is, who she’s not, who she will never be again. Drop the apologies, babe. We’re not sorry anymore for who we are, we’re not sorry for what we had to do to get here, and we’re not sorry for the time it took to learn our worth. Step out of the box of all you were supposed to be, according to everyone who wasn’t you, and walk into the you, who’s comfortable in her own skin. It’s time. You earned it. We no longer wear the expectations of anyone else and we no longer let anyone else decide what we’re worth. Because we know now. We finally know. And now it’s time to celebrate it. Get up, babe. It does not hurt anymore. Now go show YOU what you’re made of.
Once featured on Unsolved Mysteries, a story that seems impossible to believe. One that involves drug smuggling, dirty cops, and crooked political officials. Don Henry and Kevin Ives lost their lives because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.
In Saline County Arkansas on August 23 1987, Kevin Ives and Don Henry went night hunting to never return. The remains of the boys were found on the train tracks just hours later. The local coroner, Dr. Malak ruled the cause of death as accidental. Stating that the boys had smoked over 20 marijuana cigarettes and fell asleep on the tracks.
Their parents never stopped fighting for the truth. They were met with resistance upon every turn. Which made their battle that much more difficult. Multiple pathologists were consulted and examined the evidence and another autopsy was eventually performed and said pathologist found Dr. Malak’s conclusions as he put it, bizarre. In 1988 the cause of death was overturned. After it was determine that Ives had his head bashed in and Henry was stabbed in the back prior to being placed on the railroad tracks. Dr. Joseph Burton performed the 2nd autopsy. He found during the autopsies of the boys that Doctor Malik had mutilated Ives’ skull which made it difficult to determine where the original skull fractures were. He had also completely dismantled Ives’ jaw bones. Dr. Burton is quoted as saying, “I have performed thousands of autopsies and have never seen anything like this.” I feel it is important to mention that Dr. Malak had many unusual rulings in regards to cause of death on multiple cases. One case-a man was found decapitated and his cause of death was listed as an ulcer. So, do I need to say anything more about Dr. Malak?
A Grand Jury investigation into their deaths was held. It was determined that the boys likely witnessed an airplane drug drop and it resulted in their murder. Though the remaining details of the Grand Jury was sealed and kept off the record.
Witnesses were dropping like flies.
Note: This is not a complete list.
Keith McKaskle, Asked to take Aerial Photographs of the scene and later accused by multiple independent witnesses as being present when boys were killed-butchered
Greg Collins, Subpoenaed Grand Jury Witness -3 gunshot blasts to the face
Keith Coney, Subpoenaed Grand Jury Witness that professed to being present when his two friends, Ives and Henry were murdered. -Motorcycle Accident while allegedly fleeing attackers that had cut his throat. Some officers allegedly reported his throat was slashed which was withheld from the autopsy report.
Daniel Beardon, Subpoenaed Grand Jury Witness-Disappeared
Jeffrey Edward Rhodes, Supposed connection to the case-Body found in a land fill shot in the head and set on fire.
These deaths were ruled homicides in 1990 but no arrests were ever made. With exception to the butchering of McKaskle. His mentally impaired, neighbor was accused of the crime. Which seems unlikely as McKaskle was a very large and strong man; by all accounts he would have been easily able to fight off his much smaller neighbor. Needless to say the charges never stuck.
In 2016 Linda Ives filed a lawsuit citing a violation of the Freedom of Information Act. A federal judge ordered the Department of Homeland Security, DEA and the Executive Office of U.S. Attorney to turn over redacted documents for private review. The same judge dismissed other agencies from the lawsuit. In 2019 the lawsuit was dismissed. A witness came forward providing testimony that the boys were killed due to witnessing a drug drop. Which was substantiated in the Grand Jury hearing. This witness is a former WWF wrestler, Billy Jack Haynes. He has also allegedly implicated many individuals that remain nameless publicly. Haynes worked as an enforcer to make extra money to feed his habit. Haynes however, is known to create far fetched stories. There’s no evidence supporting his claims. Many of the officials he accused have since been convicted of unrelated drug crimes or murdered. Little Rock attorney, David Lewis says that the information provided by Haynes does fit with the evidence of the case. He is however, a less than credible source in my opinion.
That being said, let’s talk a bit about Jean Duffy. A more than credible source. After the the murders, Jean Duffy was appointed the head of a drug task force in Arkansas. She was told by her supervisor, Gary Arnold on her first day, that she was not allowed to investigate anything pertaining to any public officials. Almost immediately she discovered many public officials involved in drug dealing. She had to keep her findings to herself with the warning she was given day one. Plus who could she trust? She took her findings to Bob Govar. Govar was assigned to head the Federal Organized Drug and Organized Crime Task Force by U. S. Attorney *Chuck Banks. (*Remember that name).
Three years had passed since the murders. Little did she know her task force was about to be shut down. One of her officers came to her, wanting to investigate the murders. Duffy agreed and took her information to Govar. She tried to do the right thing and suffered for it. Her name was ran through the mud and she was ran out of town. Prosecutor Dan Harmon was the mud slinger aiming for Duffy.
Dan Harmon was the Ives and Henry Grand Jury prosecutor. He was also a drug trafficker. Yup you read that right. He made sure he was assigned the case. Giving him access to everything. Of course he wasn’t known to be a drug trafficker at that time. Jean Duffy never stood a chance. Not with her own people involved in the corruption. Harmon had successfully dismantled her reputation with the help of the press and his clout. She was not fired due to any of the allegations made by Harmon. She was fired due to bad publicity and it made her ineffective according to her superiors. Duffy and her family had moved out of state waiting for the Federal Grand Jury decision into corrupt officials including Harmon. But it was dismissed. U. S. Attorney *Chuck Banks held a press conference clearing all Saline County officials. Stating it was the decision of the Grand Jury. But reports indicate it was shut down prior to voting. At which time all hope to clear her name was gone. Her family endured death threats, her children were followed. Her life was never the same. Shortly after her family moved to Texas.
In the mid 90s Harmon’s ways caught up to him. But not before he had time to destroy the lives of anyone that could link him to the murders of Ives and Henry. The Harmon criminal investigation perimeters were limited to only a specific time frame. Which excluded the murders of Ives and Henry. He got off easy considering.
Drug smuggler and pilot, Barry Seal was linked to the local drug drops. The movie, American Made starring Tom Cruise is loosely based on Seal and his dealings. He allegedly worked for both Pablo Escobar and the CIA. In 1986 he was gunned down after turning informant. This was the year prior to the murders of Ives and Henry. Which means someone else was continuing the drug drops.
Many individuals involved have been forever silenced or blackballed and some allegedly set up and now serving lengthy prison sentences. For years the residents complained about low flying planes in the area. Rumors of drug drops were rampant. Over the years many individuals substantiated those rumors.
There’s no doubt that the corruption was wide spread and high up the food chain. For thirty plus years these families have tried to find justice. To find the truth. I believe they found the truth. Justice however, will never be served.
We have seen in a matter of months the murders of two Americans. On February 23rd, Ahmaud Arbery was shot multiple times by a father and son that claimed they were trying to make a citizen’s arrest. Claiming that they believed Arbery to be a robbery suspect. I will not post this video. It’s beyond disturbing. As if his murder was not bad enough, it took months before Gregory McMichael and his son Travis were arrested for the murder. Why did they wait months before arresting these two men that were seen on video committing said crime? Was it due to public outcry once the video went viral? They are saying it’s due to prosecutor turnover. The case is currently on its fourth prosecutor.
A third man has also been charged. He is accused of trying to detain Aubrey by blocking him in using his vehicle. This same man is the one whose video went viral. William “Roddie” Bryan Jr. is also charged with felony murder. The murder is now being investigated as a hate crime.
On May 25th, in Minneapolis, George Floyd died while in police custody. Floyd was arrested for suspicion of forgery. The FBI will be investigating his death. All officers present have been fired. The officers already had subdued Floyd but one held him to the ground with his knee jammed into Floyd’s neck. Floyd begged the officer to just place him into the police car and get off of his neck as he could not breathe. This continued for several minutes even after Floyd stopped moving. He was later pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.
It seems the world has gone crazy. But we cannot blame these deaths on the current crisis. Not when they are just two of a long list of deaths of African Americans while in police custody. This has been happening for a very long time in America.
How can we keep this from happening? Children don’t see color. They don’t feel hate. These things are taught. That’s a start. But that’s easier said than done. How do we get through to people whose hearts are filled with so much hatred? How do we make them understand what that hate is creating in this world?
One thing we must do-is hold these men accountable for their crimes. We cannot turn away when we see injustices happening before our eyes. If we do we are just as guilty as the perpetrators.