Archive for April, 2012

Lorain, OH- Broken Homes- and Broken People-just plain broke

WHO IS THE BOSS?????????? WHERE IS THE BOSS???? Part One

ED NOTE: Since I started writing this morning and documenting the events of this subject, I realized this is just too long for one post- even by my standards- so it will be continued with part two in twenty-four hours after publishing.

There was an article in the Sunday Morning Journal this day of the 29th of April- 2012 12-year-old attempts to rob woman with revolver

“We’ve lived in that house for 14 years and I’ve never had someone pull a gun on me — and I hope it never happens again.”

The experience seemed unreal, she said. It highlighted the decline of her neighborhood, which once featured middle-class families of all ethnicities often enjoying outdoor barbeques and parties. Now many of the houses sit empty, the grass growing uncontrolled.

“It was a nice neighborhood,” she said. “Not anymore. It’s gotten bad.”

a few days prior- April 10th 2012
Lorain man found dead in vacant duplex
His death-bed only noted by a runaway cat-

If it wasn’t for Cassandra James’ cat, police wouldn’t have discovered a man dead in a second-floor bedroom of a cluttered, vacant duplex at 1629-1631 E. 31st.

James, who lives next door, said her cat went through the basement window of the duplex. She called police to help her get her cat and found the back door was unlocked.

The man, thought to have died sometime last year, was found in the bedroom of a home that neighbors thought was abandoned

Where is the outrage, where is the rallying of community , where are the “candlelight vigils” for the death of quality of life in this city.

As I read these stories and sent out through Charleston Village’s Crime Watch heads up – information OF YET ANOTHER REGISTERED SEX OFFENDER WITH ON THE SIDE EMPLOYMENT OF DEALING DRUGS this week I realized I am no longer shocked at these stories.

I am becoming immune to the ABCD disease plaguing my neighborhood ( Abandoned- Blighted -Criminal Tenants-Deteriorating properties ) .

I can see two derelict homes from my window as I type and other homes are deteriorating at a steady pace. As for the guy walking up the street – well he can be found on the Sheriff’s site .

My icon “empty” home of nearly FOUR DECADES still stands – the windows truly defining the term “OPEN HOUSE HERE!!!” Oh! I have been told there are liens- there are legal issues by Howard Goldberg of Community Development .
How did this house ( built for a bride over a hundred years ago ) get to this latest legal entanglement and of course the excuse “WE CAN”T DO ANYTHING UNTIL……. possibly another 40 years???

I can tell you what has happened for want of a nail- the battle was lost!

It goes back to the first Administration and Building Dept. who did NOT ENFORCE CODES-
this house was in a state of disrepair in the EARLY 1970″s – the buck was passed and NEVER STOPPED!

That is what has been happening for decades- Don’t believe me???? – in 1994 Charleston Village Society put out a newsletter with the headline
FOR RENT – ONE CITY- LORAIN – we could see the way things were going even back then.
Our figures from Hud were “poo hooed” – the city didn’t count rentals the way we did

Example- if house address 1111 on “Dream on Drive” is listed as a rental – it was counted as a rental therefore count is “one rental property”

However, the house may have been made into 5 rental units so the count for rentals should be 5 rental units- you would think but no! can’t have those stats- they would look too bad . Then you have the illegal rental units grandfathered in over the years …….

This is how we got here and there has been “LIP SERVICE” paid over the years to the voter and taxpayer
One Mayor, Joseph Kozuira, did make an effort to “crack down”- ”
city’s Building Department has cracked down on housing code violations in neighborhoods
Chronicle Telegram-August 30th 1998 – Blighted-

However Joe Kozuira lost his bid for re-election and Mayor Foltin 2000 once again was on the Lip Service Platform for Enforcement of Building Codes– telling the punters what they want to hear- because nothing happened to enforce building codes:

the new housing inspectors have gotten only a lukewarm endorsement from Mayor Craig Foltin, who defeated his predecessor in 1999 in part by making an issue of what he characterized as an overly aggressive Building Department.
“We feel that if they don’t have a successful plan and aren’t self-sufficient and nice to people, then we will not continue with them,” Foltin said recently of the inspectors- Source Broken Homes article Chronicle Telegram July 2006


A city employeee whose job takes him into homes throughout Lorain faces numerous felony charges, NewsChannel 5’s Paul Kiska reported.
Olmstead Falls police arrested, Edwin Heyduk Jr., 47, a building inspector, and a 17-year-old family member on several drug charges last week

Under an ordinance passed under the Kozuira Administration some effort was made for “clean -up” at the end of 2007 –

Five Lorain landlords face charges

………But they are the first to face criminal charges under the law, which was adopted by the city in 1997. The law requires landlords to have the exterior and interior of a home inspected before a rental certificate will be issued………….
…………The five landlords own a total of 15 rental properties, a small percentage of the more than 10,000 rental properties in Lorain, most of which Provenza believes are not legally qualified to have tenants………………A July 3 fire at a West 22nd Street rental home triggered the renewed focus on rental property enforcement when fire crews discovered no working smoke detectors in the home. The fire left a single mother and her five children homeless.

photo source Morning Journal

You may have also read in past days about the Lorain’s previous Building Inspector under Mayor Craig Foltin – William Desvari whose “lack of obeying laws” has led him into any number of legal issues lately – you know the one who got his degree on-line from Ireland-


Desvari said the master’s degree included on the resume he gave to the city when he applied for the job was received from a correspondence course in 1979 that cost him $800. The degree was awarded by a nonaccredited university, Shelbourne University in Dublin, Ireland, he said. […]

”The degree cost me $800, and it probably was a mistake to keep it on my resume,” Desvari said. ”I’m probably $800 less richer for having it. I was a lot less wiser at age 27 than I am at 53.”

YOU WOULD BE WRONG BILL!! seems you carried on carrying on and wisdom didn’t come with age! –

Desvari pleaded guilty to a federal charge of theft of government property for stealing $196,992 for cashing the Social Security checks of his deceased great aunt between 1995 and 2010. He is awaiting sentencing in the case.

Lorain’s chief building official arrested Friday on bribery charges

Former Lorain building official William Desvari indicted on additional tampering and theft charges

But “FRIENDLY ( to some) FOLTIN according to Buckeye State Blog August 30th-2006 – continued to stand by his man

William Desvari: Since being hired by Foltin in 2003, Chief Building Inspector William Desvari has lied about having a master’s degree, hid past felony convictions for theft and forgery, and encouraged the hiring of a registered sex offender. To make matters worse, recently it has been reported in the Lorain Morning Journal that Desvari hired a second sex offender, owns a private business despite Lorain ordinances which bar him from doing so, and has unfairly targeted the home of a Lorain councilman for housing code violations. Yet even with this list of deceit and mistakes and a mounting demand from local media, Foltin has yet to ask for Desvari’s resignation. [Lorain Morning Journal, 07/28/2006; 07/21/06; 7/26/05; 10/3/03]



Photo Source Chronicle Telegram

On January 2nd 2008 the Morning Journal ran the article – There’s a New Mayor In Town (Tony Krasienko) and what did he have to say?

During your time on council, you were extremely critical of the city’s Building Department and Chief Building Official William Desvari. Will your administration try to replace him?

KRASIENKO: We’re going to make sure that the building department is going to be user-friendly, they enforce the laws and that they are going to be held accountable. And any employee that can buy into that mission statement is more than welcome to stay. Anybody that can’t live with that, maybe they should look elsewhere.

But it’s an important department for this city. You’ve got significant housing issues and you need to significantly change customer service in the city of Lorain.

And yet Chase Ritenauer was able to use the deteriorating and deteriorated conditions of Lorain’s housing to defeat Tony Krasienko in the primary election


April 30, 2012 at 5:07 pm 9 comments

Lorain’s Sons of Sacrifice- Iraq and Afghanistan – The Proud

Who I am- Freedom Speaks - art work Christopher Ritchey

And I believe we need heroes, I believe we need certain people who we can measure our own shortcomings by. Richard Attenborough

They are the sons of Lorain, these young men who went to war – asked no favor expected no quarter. They may or may not have known one another, as they attended school, participated in sports, music, drama or walked in the sunshine over looking Lorain’s blue Lake Erie, looked out upon her lighthouse, played catch with dads, sat at the dinner table waiting for mom’s cooking, laughed and loved but they were brothers .

A brotherhood, born of a desire to keep free from harm and terror the rest of us who can still enjoy those life giving waters of Lake Erie , sunshine still caressing the flag of their country. The off shore breezes help her to speak proudly and call to us we need to listen and remember . These young men have joined their brothers of so many wars, through the decades, who answered the flag’s call of freedom.

Proud in heart and proud of the spirit of freedom these brave young men – sons of Lorain- who gave everything it was possible for them to give.

A mother and father’s pride as they held their new-born son at his birth, the indescribable happiness as tiny swollen eyes struggled to open and saw the light for the first time , tiny fingers holding on , reaching and hearing a familiar heart beat at their mother’s breast. A dad, taking this tiny bundle into his oh! so big hands, hands that will throw a football, base-ball , maybe even chastise, hands that felt too big and awkward to hold this tiny little being who is his son. A mother’s heart will break and a father’s hands will tremble as they learn of their son’s ultimate sacrifice- for them and for us- the pain mixed with a pride of that tiny child who became a man – a hero .

Lorain, has 4 young men who have given in the Iraq and Afghanistan War- a war started by “terror” that has brought terror to these shores.

Army 1st Sgt. Bruce Horner – Son of Ed and Betty Horner
Died June 1, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom assigned to the 127th Military Police Company, 709th Military Police Battalion, 18th Military Police Brigade, 21st Theater Support Command, Fliegerhorst, Germany; died in Seddah of wounds sustained when his unit came in contact with enemy forces using small-arms fire.

Airman 1st Class Eric Barnes – Son of Tom and Shary Barnes
Died June 10, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom assigned to the 90th Logistics Readiness Squadron, F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyo.; died as result of an improvised explosive device attack on an Air Force convoy about 100 miles south of Baghdad.

Marine Lance Corporal David Hall son of Delmar and Lulu Hall
Died August 31, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; died Aug. 31 in Garmsir, Afghanistan, while supporting combat operations.

Marine Lance Corporal Joseph “Ryan” Giese son of Larry Giese and Connie Wascovich
Died January 7, 2011 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom assigned to 2nd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; died Jan. 7 in Helmand province, Afghanistan, while conducting combat operations.

photo Mark Teleha

We cannot give back the happiness to those that have lost their son, husband, brother, grandchild, nephew but we can show how proud we are of these Sons of Lorain. The area known as Settlers’ Watch has a tribute carving to Airman First Class Eric Barnes , it is the center piece of the green space. Diagonally across the large lot is another tribute space that of Lorain’s Fleet Admiral Ernest J King.

Through the Black Walnut trees and brush of the green space joining Settlers’ Watch and the Admiral King Tribute site, one who walks there, will find glimpses of a lake that mirrors the colors of the Flag of the United States of America.

Lake Erie’s blue sparkling waters kissed with light, the roar of anger as the winds of war whipped about us- the crashing of white capped waves as we fight for our way of life and the red glow of a lake sunset reflected upon a calm that peace can bring.

A flag still flying, given her voice once more by the wind of pride, beckons us to remember those that walked the path of war.

Design by Christopher Ritchey The colors of the pales (the vertical stripes) are those used in the flag of the United States of America; White signifies purity and innocence, Red, hardiness and valour, and Blue, the color of the Chief (the broad band above the stripes) signifies vigilance, perseverance and justice.

The Eric Barnes’ – Walk of Heroes will pay honor and show our “pride” remembering those young men . Along the walkway a tribute space, personal to each son , a place for giving thanks from those that have benefitted from their ultimate gift- their young lives- their bravery , their love of country. And a reminder to those who can still enjoy a game of catch, a sunrise, a child’s cry, as they are born into freedom, by a shimmering lake -a place to look out upon the lake of the colours of freedom. A lake, who at times can be grey with the color of mourning, kisses the shores and gives thanks in her own way.

Contributions to the Eric Barnes’- Walk of Heroes can be made to
Charleston Village Society
1127 West 4th Street
Lorain, Oh 44052
for further information on the project please contact or phone 440-246-6046

April 28, 2012 at 4:42 pm 4 comments

The “Good???” Dr. – Drugs- Trust – Selling of hope- Part 3

UPDATE: The latest FDA information on the drugs mentioned can be found here

Reaching out- art work- Christopher Ritchey

Part One

Part Two

As I stated in Part two – reliving the journey of my experience with Doctors/ hospitals – the medical profession and what ultimately became our tragedy in the loss of my son – Christopher Ritchey – I knew writing the series was going to emotionally take me to places I may not be strong enough to go . So, like a marathon runner in training to get to the main event, I decided to start at the beginning of my experiences hence my memories of a three-year old.

During the course of my journey of grief at the loss of my son I have met so many people , especially mothers, who share my road. I was introduced to Joanne Cacciatore, PhD and her blog where “those in part of the “healing profession , are trying to pigeon-hole and make grief just another disease to take a pill”
and move on. Some of the drugs prescribed for this “illness of grief” can be found here :

Depression is big business for the drug companies- I “STRONGLY” suggest you check and see the side effects of these drugs- but Hey! not to worry if you suffer a few – that is OK – I am sure Doctor MD/DO will have another drug in his repertoire to counteract those symptoms and so it goes…..

All types of media from print to electronic now bombard you with “cures for your ills”

Ask your Dr. about XYZ drug – you can live a normal life – just ask him/her about OUR drug.

The snake oil salesmen of the 21st century meet our with our need to hope and be well and we rush to their call with our little insurance cards in hand –

I have watched the commercial, as probably you have ( the commerce drug of the moment- this drug in the billions of dollars – bigger than some country’s budgets ) HUMIRA for many months and any of number of times a night. I have noted the voice over of the side effects- can cause . Lymphoma/ Cancer Tuberculosis ( this is a CURE!!!!!”) and HOW MANY SERIOUS SIDE EFFECTS HAPPENED? I walked the path of the Curable Lymphoma – Hodgkin’s
Why would anyone take this drug ?
from their own website

Important Safety Information About HUMIRA® (adalimumab)1

HUMIRA is a TNF blocker medicine that can lower the ability of your immune system to fight infections. You should not start taking HUMIRA if you have any kind of infection unless your doctor says it is okay.

ED NOTE: OH OK so according to Humira we put our trust in our Doctor- how many Dr’s ( I bet yours is ) are part of the pharmaceutical sales onslaught- you have seen them with their suits and cases as you wait in the world’s waiting rooms for your turn with the Good?? Dr.

From the Princeton Review – emphasis mine

Pharmaceutical sales is a fast-paced, high-turnover business that rewards assertiveness, persistence, and knowledge. Pharmaceutical sales representatives spend most of their business time on the road, talking with pharmacists, hospital personnel, physicians, patient advocacy groups, and even retirement homes, increasing the visibility of their company’s products and the volume of their sales. “Sell sell sell learn learn learn sell sell sell,” wrote one sales rep, who included his business card with his survey, in case we wanted to purchase any pharmaceutical supplies………………
………..For many, a significant portion of their income is riding on their ability to get the product into the hands of the consumer. So, why is this job so addictive? Perhaps because the “EXCESSIVE PROFIT MARGINS” of many brand-name pharmaceutical products can mean enormous commissions

and for your further reading –
Confessions of a Pharmaceutical Sales Rep

•Serious infections have happened in people taking HUMIRA. These serious infections include tuberculosis (TB) and infections caused by viruses, fungi, or bacteria that have spread throughout the body. Some people have died from these infections. Your doctor should test you for TB before starting HUMIRA, and check you closely for signs and symptoms of TB during treatment with HUMIRA. If your doctor feels you are at risk, you may be treated with medicine for TB.

•Cancer. For children and adults taking TNF blockers, including HUMIRA, the chance of getting lymphoma or other cancers may increase. There have been cases of unusual cancers in children, teenagers, and young adults using TNF blockers. Some people have developed a rare type of cancer called hepatosplenic T-cell lymphoma. This type of cancer often results in death. If using TNF blockers including HUMIRA, your chance of getting two types of skin cancer (basal cell and squamous cell) may increase. These types are generally not life-threatening if treated; tell your doctor if you have a bump or open sore that doesn’t heal.

During my journey, I have met on-line the mother of one of the “SOME PEOPLE”- a mother who trusted – who put the most important person in her life – her child- her son into the hands of the snake oil salesmen – they trusted their medical practitioner to help her son.

This is the face of “SOME people” – he is the reason there is a disclaimer- his life given – His name is Maxx Wendell- a young man with an oh so bright future- a young man full of life, humour and love. WE should all pay attention – because we are the “people” who may also end up as disclaimer as the money rolls in .

His mother, Lisa, wrote a comment on this blog which I have reprised below. Lisa fights through her grief and terror so that no other mother has to walk the path of “induced death” – the some people side effect of this drug . As you look at the side effects of any drug and see some cases , some instances, some deaths remember there is a face behind those side effects who have paid the ultimate price for pharmaceutical profits- Lisa Wendell and her family are “some people”:

Lisa wrote:

For those who read your blog, I am the mom of the son who was prescribed a combination of immunosuppressive medications (what are called biologic TNF blockers) to keep his ulcerative colitis, a non-life threatening chronic autoimmune disease in remission. As a result, Maxx developed Hepatosplenic T-Cell Lymphoma, an aggressive, deadly cancer that killed him in 17 weeks. He was 21.

We were NOT informed of the dangers of this drug precisely because the makers of the drugs (Johnson and Johnson/Centocor and Abbott) had not yet labeled the medication with Black Box warnings advising of the 6 fold increase in risk for this disease in a pediatric population of young men between the ages of 17 and 24. In fact, we were specifically told that the risks for any serious side-effects, including Lymphoma were so low as to be virtually the same occurring in the general population. The combination of the doctor’s ignorance/arrogance and the out and out cover up by the drug industries of deadly side effects (levels of corruption that are unimaginable and occurring across the board all the time with regard to all drugs) killed our boy. Thousands of people a year lose their lives so drug companies can reap profits we can scarcely imagine.

One of the drugs, Remicade, was labeled shortly before he became ill. By that time he was no longer taking Remicade but had been prescribed another medication, Humira, with a different “delivery system” (self-injectible vs. infusion) that was supposed to have a better “safety profile.” Essentially, all this turned out to mean was that the Black Box warning had not yet been required on Humira. As of April, 2011 Humira now carries this warning as well.

Maxx a young man who was proud of his athleticsm- and the results of his training regime

In the meantime, my son is dead. Doctors are still prescribing these medications to people with a variety of autoimmune disorders including Rheumatoid Arthritis, Chron’s, Ulcerative Colitis, and refactory cases of Psoriasis. In the four years since Maxx died, another 41 people have been reported to have died from HSTCL.

We cannot know if they were ever told by their physicians of the dangers, however, we were not informed. We did not consent to taking any risks. Never. We would never have taken such a risk with Maxx’s life. We asked repeatedly about the safety of both Remicade and Humira and were always told the same thing. The drugs are safe. The real information was supressed. Deliberately and for as long as possible to allow the drug makers literally years to make billions. Humira is one the top three selling money making drugs on the market for its manufacturer. What are 40 deaths when compared to billions? The true story’s behind drug company cover ups, lies,marketing scams, and greed are now common knowledge.

I will talk to anyone who is interested in knowing more about Maxx’s story and I welcome contact with other parents who have lost children to medical “fraud” and terminal disease.

I also urge anyone taking drugs for any chronic condition to thoroughly research the medications you or a loved one have been prescribed. Keep reading, keep asking, keep pestering, never stop. Keep fighting to get the information you need to make an informed decision. Our family is not stupid. Maxx was brilliant. We were duped. He lost his life, and I lost my heart

Only those of us who have walked the path of such utter confusion in the medical maze and have lost our reasons for being know how gut wrenching and brave it is for Lisa to write of her journey- she is still giving in the name of her son – and trying to save others from the depair and terrible agony of such a loss- my heart and “knowing” are with her….. LISTEN to Lisa …….. we could all end up as the legal disclaimer one day as one of the ………. “SOME people”

April 24, 2012 at 9:19 pm 15 comments

Begging to Live- the healthcare system fails the patient-once again

This morning I received an email from a reader asking me to check out how the medical system fails the patient: I checked – I was once again angry ( which as readers know can keep me upright) .

His name is Brad Anderson his story is one that is repeated over and over and over again – Brad is local to Lorain County

April 21, 2012

My name is Brad Anderson; I am 43 years old, father of 5 boys, and husband to Amy Anderson for the past 22 years. I have cirrhosis of the liver (non alcoholic) and without a liver transplant I will die!

First let me say- I’m far from perfect, in fact some would say that I am bullheaded, and extremely opinionated. All of my life I was taught to work hard, be a good Father, good Husband, good friend, make good choices, give back to those in need. I have tried my best to teach my boys the same values………

August 15th I went in for a procedure to help with the kidney stones I was getting. The doctor came to Amy with bad news; he wasn’t able to do the procedure because I either had bone marrow cancer or cirrhosis. I didn’t know it then but the day before was the end of my 22 year career at the steel mill. I spent the next few months going through many tests and in December of 2008 I was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver. My mom had died from the same disease in 2004, like her I was never a drinker. For the next couple of years we struggled to adjust to our new life with only about half of my income and me slowly getting sicker and sicker. Over the last year my condition has been steadily worsening. This past January my doctor told me it was time to meet with the transplant team. After all of the tests they told me that I was a perfect candidate that was until we met with financial services.

We were told that I could not be put on the list until I showed that I had $50,000 to $70,000, which was our deductible. To me that was a death sentence. I have been in the hospital all but 3 days so far this month; the nurses at my doctor’s office told Amy to call the transplant team again. They asked Amy if she had $100,000, they said that the higher amount was for any potential complications. They told her that no hospital in the nation would put me on a list without the money.
I am a proud man and it is hard for me to ask anyone for anything, especially money. But now I am begging. I don’t want to die.

I want to finish watching my boys play football and to see the youngest two graduate high school. I want to see them start their own families. Amy and I were supposed to grow old together as grandparents, sitting in the stands at our grandchildren’s games. I don’t know how to go from never missing a game to now having to miss their lives.

Please read his story and the donation information on the website
This the “supposed” greatest healthcare system in the world has a man begging for the funds to save his life…… Can you help where the healthcare system is failing him please go to his website to donate and if any of you know how to get this man the help he needs – If you are an advocate willing to fight for him and his family through the muck and mire of the “insurance” jungle please contact me and I will see the information is passed on –

April 23, 2012 at 3:52 pm 1 comment

The GOOD???? Dr. or Dentist – Part Two
A few weeks ago I wrote the above post and in part of it stated:

This has been brought home to me in ways I never thought I would experience.
Of course YOUR insurance will in most cases dictate “the who, where and how much for your healthcare”… so how do you know the person with the white coat is any good? You are putting your “health” in their hands -and do you even have a choice?

I put the series away in my brain partially because exploring my recent history with “Dr’s.” I AM VERY BIASED as to the “Good” and the Bad’ and the damned well ” Strike them from the register” type. My experiences come from a patient/ patient family member’s perspective not one from medical knowledge.

I realize other patients may have had completely different perspectives and experiences with THOSE SAME Dr’s. and Dentists BUT these are MY experiences and opinions based upon MY personal experiences and there are always two involved in these relationships – the Dr. and the patient. I may not always understand their world and I am damned sure most of them don’t understand mine. So I have hesitated to relive the medical journey of my experiences – some of my remembered experiences of late are too painful and other aspects are too maddening .

The White Coat of Dr. Death- by Chris Ritchey

As I said this series was put on the back burner BUT recently every night as I try to lose myself in the world of television an advertisement for the Cleveland Clinic (Taussig) Cancer Center interrupts my respite – a face- I know all too well appears smiling – with white frame eye glasses to match the beautifully cut hair, a small diamond earring and the tailored white coat smiles

” or a minor miracle”.

Ah! the benevolent

“we will take care of you”

theme of the advertisement as the face flashes across the screen- I remember hands, beautifully manicured , as cold as death itself and a demeanour/ bedside manner to go with them .

As the advertisement continues and I recognize the places and people – I cringe, memories flooding into my over emotional brain, bile rising in my throat and I am jolted back in time to my experience of the obscenity of cancer and refractory Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, the Dr’s. -the cure??? and the journey. As the “commercial” ( because cancer is a commodity ) continues to appeal to those that need the “services

“-( buy our treatment – we care- we are the best- we cure and we may throw in a miracle and give the hopeless hope)

like the fast food come on for disease -. The next commercial for the best new car on the road follows and is in the same vein “Buy Me”!!! I resist the urge to throw something hard and heavy at the TV screen. And I realize that I need to get the “journey” down on virtual paper if only for the sake of my television set.

I also came across a sketch a few days ago drawn by my son whilst searching for something else, completely unrelated ( see above The White Coat of Dr. Death) – I shuddered when I saw it – it was done many years ago when he was very young – but once again his artwork speaks (could it be from premonition?) I too will speak – so here we go :

Do you remember your first Dr.? I do , I suppose I was Gavin’s age– just about three- in London England – under the British National Health Service – I presume we went to this Dr. because were in his catchment area.

I remember his house – his surgery must have been in his home as I recall seeing the open door to his kitchen- his name was Dr. Moriarty ( not of Sherlock Holmes’ fame) I remember his name because there was a game that my Dad used to play with uncles and cousins at family parties, through the years that game would always remind me of the “Dr.” – “Are you there Moriarty?”

The room was shades of brown and smelled of what I now realize was stale cigarette smoke and drink. Dr. Moriarty had a very unkempt look about him – he had whiskers more from lack of shaving than of a deliberate beard – and looking back I believe he must have imbibed quite a lot- he certainly wouldn’t have still been on the lists in this day and age.

He had braces ( suspenders) keeping up rough working man’s trousers that hadn’t seen a pressed creased for many years ( a far cry indeed from the Cleveland Clinics Dr. of the knife creased Armani -like trousers and Italian leather loafers)- I think I remember those rough trousers because they scratched my skin when his lifted me up and they were covered in fallen cigarette ash. In fact I can see him now, him sitting down writing something ( my chart perhaps) at a big wooden roll top desk as a cigarette dangled from the side of his mouth- the ash got longer and longer and I was fascinated as to when it would finally fall off- it did and landed on his trousers, he made no move to brush it away or in fact notice the burning tip of the cigarette ( sans filter) was getting dangerously close to his mouth. He didn’t have a shirt on but sort of a long john underwear top. In later years seeing the photos of Albert Einstein and his hair I would remember Dr. Moriarty.

My mother was very worried because I had very little appetite ( if he could but see me now :)) Instead of weighing me the Dr. picked me up like a sack of flour to judge my weight and looked into my eyes.

Her eyes are clear and she is fine just make sure she drinks her milk and give her a tablespoon of Codliver Oil and Malt( with butterscotch and honey) every night before bed

was the diagnosis….. I can still taste it these many decades later- it wasn’t as bad as you may think and I looked forward to my nightly tablespoon. When Chris was ill and struggling when he came back from Texas I tracked down a place to order some , thinking it might help his strength, but the order was never placed- there was no need…………

I don’t remember ever seeing Dr. Moriarty ever again. The next time I was ill and tucked up into bed the Dr. who came – that is right they made house calls – was indifferent – old – sterner – not patient and smelled like medicine . I remember him putting his Dr’s. bag on my bed and taking out a bottle of horrible white stuff that had to be shaken – it tasted like what I believe disinfectant would taste like. I would have none of it – spat it out all over him- he was not amused -. I refused to take anymore of the vile tasting stuff- he gave my mother a bottle of cherry flavoured syrup for my throat. He said , very crossly,

“It won’t do her a bit of good” but she won’t take what will”

– The bottle of white medicine stayed corked and I don’t believe I ever remember seeing him again .

to be continued……….


All writings are based upon my personal experience , memories and perception of the events.

April 22, 2012 at 11:53 am 13 comments

Lorain Dude- a tuff mudder- NOT- Lorain has “fun”draisers and e books

Lorain Dude- ready to roll- where is the mud?

Although I was ready with my own transportation suitable for the event , my “mudder” ( mother to you) wouldn’t let me attend the Tough Mudder event in Amherst – she said –

” No! this event is not for little boys and anyway you are the “LORAIN Dude”

So then I decided ( thanks to a little help from Nag Nog) to hold my own “Mud Event” in Lorain. Watch out! I am in training for the next one- hmmmm is there a height limit and do I have to be fully potty trained?????

So back to Lorain

I know that Nag Nog’s neighbor Kelly Sagert has been working hard with the Eden Valley Enterprises and Betty Lou Higgins .

GRANDMA GATEWOOD: OHIO’S LEGENDARY HIKER is now available in PDF format delivered right to your e-mail box or for your Kindle for only $5.99! Read about this fascinating woman’s hiking adventures on the Appalachian Trail and beyond.

This e-book is one part of our Grandma Gatewood project which includes a storytelling program (now available for bookings) and a documentary (for which we are currently seeking funds).

The storytelling program is currently scheduled to be presented at the Buckeye TrailFest later this month and at the Willoughby Library on August 6. If you would like to arrange for this or any of our programs to be presented for your group, send us an e-mail! In the meantime, keep track of our performance schedule on our website. We hope to see you at a program soon!

On April 25th Lorain City Schools is having a Friendraiser Hey!!! I have been to those kind of parties…

Citizens for Lorain Schools “friendraiser”

The Lorain City Schools is having a rigatoni dinner “friendraiser” in support of the schools. This event is sponsored by the Citizens for Lorain Schools, Chase Ritenauer, Mayor of Lorain and Ed Branham, Superintendent of Lorain City Schools.
The “friendraiser” will be held at St. Frances Cabrini Parish Hall on Wednesday April 25, 2012 with serving time from 4:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Price for an adult ticket (anyone 13 years and older) is $10.00. The price for children, 12 years old and under, will be $6.00. For your money you will receive rigatoni and meatballs, salad, rolls, dessert, and beverage.

There will be prizes and giveaways!
For tickets, please call Bambi Dillon at 440-288-2592, after 8:00 p.m., or email her at GOSLOVAK@CENTURYTEL.NET.

Come join in the fun and help support the Lorain City Schools!!
Venue Details
Date:April 25, 2012 Time:4:00 pm Venue:St. Frances Cabrini Parish Hall
2143 Homewood Dr.Lorain, OH 44055 (440) 277-7266

April 29th-2012 More Italian fare and fun

Black River Historical Society Pasta Paradise VI

The Black River Historical Society will be presenting Pasta Paradise VI on Sunday, April 29, 2012, from 3:00 to 6:00pm at the Jackalope Lakeside Restaurant, 301 Lakeside Ave. in Lorain.

For $18 per person you will receive a buffet of Chicken Alfredo, Pasta Bolognaise & Sausage Penne Marinara, Tossed Salad, Garlic Bread, Dessert, Coffee, Tea. One glass of wine or draft beer will also be included.

Tickets are available at the Moore House Museum, 309 West Fifth Street, Lorain or from a BRHS Trustee. Proceeds will benefit the Black River Historical Society/Moore House Museum.For more information call 440-245-2563

Venue Details – Date: April 29, 2012 Time: 3:00 pm
Venue:Jackalope Lakeside Restaurant
301 Lakeside Ave.
Lorain, OH 44052
(440) 288-2051

Since eating pasta with tomato sauce can get messy I suggest you follow my lead and take a “poo bah” along with you to help you out – he was terrific in getting me cleaned up from my “mudder event” (especially when it gets in your ears) and as for my own mother she isn’t so tough- 🙂

April 18, 2012 at 11:11 am 3 comments

Titanic Tale ?- The Shame of Lorain’s Forgotten Maritime History

All week there have been programs and events “remembering ” The Titanic- it is a story that has touched the hearts and minds of people all over the world for 100 years.
Dan Brady has run the local coverage of 100 years ago on his blog

But as I relived the story this weekend , the thousands and thousands that flocked to exhibits I thought how neglected this little corner of the world and her maritime history. And yet there is another connection to Titanic and the people who archive her – She lies in Lake Superior near the resting place of the Edmund Fitzgerald – The John M Osborne

Source Photo Bob Emerson

The fact that the State of Michigan deems the story of the shipwreck and the preservation of the wreck as important to the history of the Inland Seas and the archiver of the Titanic- Ken Marschall has also archived the Osborne but Lorain knew not the worth of her people to the maritime history………

The story of The John Osborne and those heroes of yesterday in 1884 can be found here:

Suddenly, the Alberta itself loomed out of the fog, all lit up, like a great big factory…”

Fannie Wilford’s terror can only be imagined as she stood with her husband, her children asleep below decks, a cruel ending to such a lovely day as the steel-clad Alberta towering above the little freighter bore down upon the hapless couple

“Tom! That boats going right through us!”

Very Quietly Captain Wilford answered


and almost as he spoke the Alberta struck the Osborn square in her side, slightly aft bursting through her steel hull into the engine room and filling the Osborne with escaping steam”

“Keep your nose in the Gap”

Capt Wilford shouted to the Alberta and the Alberta did.

Had she withdrawn the Osborn would have sank immediately, but at it was there were six or seven precious minutes for rescue. Captain Wilford lifted his wife up to the Alberta then ran along the deck through the steam and was lowered to by a rope to get to the cabin where his daughters had been.

Cora, his one daughter, in her night-clothes had wanted to go back and get dressed but a deckhand (Thomas Barnes) told her there wasn’t time and lifted her up into the rigging. The steward, Mr. Austin (the same man who just hours before has held Sunday school services) rescued Addie and rushed her through the scalding steam holding his arm across his face and keeping the little girls face close to him. He handed her up to the deck of the Alberta and went back through the steam for the mangled and scalded sailors below”(HFMC)

“ Steam rushed from the freighter’s crushed boilers, the air was filled with shouts of seaman and those screams from those who had been sprayed by scalding water.”(Lewis)

Meanwhile the Alberta who had a full line of passengers on board including woman and children.

“They were all awakened by the shock of the two vessels coming together and before they could be made to understand that they were not in any danger they had run out of their state rooms and swarmed on the decks. The shrieking of women and the cries of men made the boat seem a perfect pandemonium. Many women in their fright fainted away and the men too were stunned by the sense of their supposed danger to do anything for them.”(Daily reporter Fon Du Lac Wis. July 30th 1884)

In fact the first newspaper editor/owner ( Lorain Monitor) in this place known as Lorain lost his life in a maritime tragedy upon these inland seas.

Links to Part one, two and three can be found in this last post of the series

“About 3 o’clock Monday morning Mr. Munhall got up to let do down the window as it was blowing very cold. While he was doing this he heard loud cries for help from the direction oil lake and apparently 100 yards from the shore. He closed the window and ran down and opened the door and again heard loud cries for help seemingly from a dozen men. He then got a lantern, called me and we went to the shore, but when we got there we could neither see nor hear anything.”

The party then went on to Whites’ Place where there is a small stretch of beach. Here we found more wreckage such pieces of the hull from 10 feet long down to a mere sliver while standing on this beach a coat washed ashore and was eagerly examined The figure was a very small check and the color was gray. There was nothing whatever in the pockets by which the owner could be identified, and none of the party recognized it.

It was preserved by Henry Snyder who now in his possession. One-half of a life preserver also washed ashore but there was nothing about it to indicate where it came from. We then proceeded to bathing house in West Cleveland where found the canvas curtains belonging the yacht spread out on the beach and learned that E. A. Lawler and Con, Ritter had been found

Links to the underwater photos of the John M Osborne can be found in Captain Wilford Posts. Fanny Gilmore Wilford was also the young lady of the Civil War Letters .
The home they share still stands at 416 Washington Avenue and is currently for sale .

April 15, 2012 at 10:15 pm 5 comments

Angels came down- Kevin Costner- alone on a battlefield

Thought I would share this …. battlefields and young men who have died on them are on my mind this morning – for a couple of reasons….

Angels Came Down -2011 KEVIN COSTNER & MODERN WEST

Walking all alone in the Southern rain
By graveyards and battlefields that blood still stains
Back to a time when the angels came
Walking all alone in the Southern rain

In the forests and the fields so many men were killed
I can hear their cries still echo through these hills
That was the time when the angels came
Walking all alone in the Southern rain

The angels came down to the fallen men
They held their hands and they prayed for them
They carried their souls beyond the moon and the sun
All the way to heaven one by one

The angels worked so hard for so many years
To heaven and back again they shed so many tears
They left no one and they placed no blame
Walking all alone in the Southern rain

The angels came down to the fallen men
They held their hands and they prayed for them
They carried their souls beyond the moon and the sun
All the way to heaven one by one

Walking all alone in the Southern rain
Never heal the troubles never heal the pain
But that was the time when the angels came
Walking all alone in the Southern Rain

April 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm 8 comments

Past- Passed- Forgotten by most – Remember for just a while- Chris Ritchey

I was speaking to a mother, who too, was bearing the grief of losing her son. She related a conversation with her husband. ( I am paraphrasing) Apparently he needed a password , she told him the password- he said

Oh I thought you would use XXXXXXXX birthdate.

her thinking was

People might associate it with me so it wouldn’t be secure.

Her husband said :

we would be the only ones apart from (immediate family) who would remember that – we are the only ones that remember him now

People move on- as the months pass- anyone who has “passed over” – no matter who- friend, father, husband , mother, wife, uncle and aunt are forgotten more and more in the hours/ days/ weeks that pass after a death. Life takes over death.

Oh! we may bring them out during conversation at gatherings-

remember ‘Bill” and the time he …. or Mi Ma made the best lasagna ….

but as the months go by so do those that have died.

We may pop up to the cemetery ( if it is close) and put something ( hopefully appropriate) on their “grave” on special occasions- the hat tip to memory . It is the way of life, except when you outlive your child- as a mother I can tell you this is a different type of grief – the memories are with you and you struggle with the memory and missing.

Maybe it is because there is another aspect to our grief – something else that tugs- maybe it is the fact your child did not get to live out a “life” – maybe because they were so loved and important to you that when you realize they are being forgotten in the grand scheme of life although their impact on your life is so monumental- the rest of the world has moved on
That realization is harder to bear somehow as your child didn’t have their “chance” and it is now seemingly, as if they never existed, the pain is compounded .

Your child of your heart will never find the cure for cancer, paint a masterpiece, leave a legacy of any importance( especially if they didn’t have the chance for children of their own) – their lives too short to make even a nominal impact on this our civilization. They are gone – a momentary blip on the radar of living.

When they were born- you have such hope for their life -what they will be who they will be – and then nothing – it is taken .

I have mentioned how my grandson “knows ” my son but only because his own mother talks about Chris everyday, –Chris is part of his daily life . If that were not the case the little boy, would only know of his Uncle Chris when someone would mention –

Oh! Gavin has Chris’s temper or Chris’s hands

but even that, as the years go by, people will “forget”– Chris has already started to fade – become distant, the ripple of memory dissipating until it is no more in the living of their life. It will happen to all of us eventually, we will become probably a search term maybe in future decades as someone looks for the ancestors.

Our lives boxed into – born – married- died and few census reports– our everyday existence limited to a few notes in newspapers or public records. Even if we achieve some nominal fame that too will fade – Who invented the gun – or how about more recently “Super Glue ” – or the assembly line ?( bet you thought it was Henry Ford – you would be wrong – Ransome Eli Olds )

Yes, we all pass into oblivion eventually-

all those young warriors whose headstones fill the countryside in Europe but all those other nameless mother’s children who died on so many battlefields through the centuries forgotten now –

and yet another mother, in another time , just like me looked at her child on the first day of their lives and dreamed a dream for them.

My son left a legacy of his work- his paintings ( although to me are priceless), I admit aren’t very good – they will never be classified as a masterpiece, his real talent lay in another aspect of his work and although his peers at the advertising agency stated

:”he was poised for great success”

– it is probably only Nikki and I and his dad that know which commercials were his clients and whose heart-strings tug as they are played or are still in print- soon though they will be replaced.

Tonight I will attend the dinner at Lorain County Community College and meet the recipient of last years “Christopher Ritchey Leadership Award” – that and the Cleveland Institute of Art scholarships help me – knowing that his legacy is not just a designer headstone and a cursory glance by those passing by on their way of “memory”


Debra L. Richter
Alumni and Scholarship Coordinator
Lorain County Community College Foundation
1005 N. Abbe Road
Elyria, OH 44035
440.366.7758 – Office
440.366.4078 – Fax

If you would like to contribute to the Christopher Ritchey Memorial Scholarship at CIA please do so by sending the check to :

Attn M. Kinsella
Cleveland Institute of Art,
11141 East Boulevard,
Cleveland, OH 44106
mark Chris Ritchey Memorial Scholarship

April 11, 2012 at 3:59 pm 8 comments

Combining Religion- Politics – Castrations/ Cover -ups/ Church

If you didn’t want to start an argument within the family at our gatherings in the “old Country” ( England) you steered clear of talking about religion and or politics. In fact my father’s mother refused to have those subjects discussed at the dinner table. “it is very bad for the digestion”.

Funny though, because she was the most opinionated of them all, if my memory serves me. Although it was felt generally the politics and religion are not a good mix.

It is fraught with danger, in my opinion, to combine the two . I find that politics and religion are now lumped together with the candidates running for President of the United States

I was asked the other day – after writing the previous piece
what I believed…. the question made me think. You see I always thought ( being brought up loosely with religion) I was a “Protestant – Church of England the box to be ticked on a questionnaire. Not that I ever “practiced much” the odd weddings and holiday services after I reached an age of decision.

Father Divis -Lorain Ohio

I never bothered much about what other people believed – to each his own – if someone believed in Jesus Christ or not , or in any of the religions of the world that was their business. Who was I to say who was correct? I kept religion in my way, until the arrogance of right by might touched my life-

Confrontation Bishop Lennon

I started researching these men of compassion, whose way was of the majority in this place called Lorain. I would suggest the following website –

I knew there was always hypocrisy in organized religion – there are many, many instances and situations that I could document not one segment of any “faith” is free from controversy.

However , I was truly sickened the other day at this story appearing in major newspapers and electronic media in Europe where religious beliefs and politics are once again locked arm in arm. The “MEN of God forcibly castrating young men to cure them of homosexuality and covering up the wide-spread sex abuse amongst the men of FAITH????????? and then enabling the cover-up of such disgrace even NOW!- I AM SICKENED!!!.
This happened under the “reign” of

261.Pius XII (1939-58)
262.Blessed John XXIII (1958-63)
263.Paul VI (1963-78)
264.John Paul I (1978)
265.John Paul II (1978-2005)
266.Benedict XVI (2005—)

You can’t make me believe that NONE of these revered heads of the Roman Catholic Church were unaware of the abuse of their priests and bishops and Archbishops!

Pius XII (1939-58)

Forcible castrations and the Dutch good old boys’ network

by Robert Chesal http://www.

How could the commission into abuse in the Catholic church have left the cases of castration out of its report?

But Dohmen found something even more important. He discovered that the Deetman report failed to mention a certain political figure who tried to secure a royal pardon for Gregorius and other convicted Catholic brothers from Harreveld. That was Victor Marijnen, a former Dutch prime minister and leading member of the Catholic People’s party (KVP). The KVP later merged with Protestant parties to form the Christian Democrats (CDA) – the political party of inquiry commission chairman Wim Deetman..

You see in the Netherlands in the 1950’s

Blessed John XXIII (1958-63)

We know this thanks to investigative journalist Joep Dohmen of the newspaper NRC Handelsblad. Dohmen wrote about a boarding school student who had been sexually abused by a Dutch monk. When the former student reported the abuse to the police in 1956, he was brought to a Roman Catholic psychiatric ward, declared a homosexual and then castrated. The same surgery was probably performed on at least 10 other schoolmates of his who tried to blow the whistle on abuse. The main abuser in this case was “Gregorius”, the brother superior of the Roman Catholic Harreveld boarding school in the east of the Netherlands.

In short, the Harreveld castration story reveals collusion between institutions, bishops, politicians, the police and the justice system that enabled sexual abuse in the church to continue unpunished for decades on end.

Paul VI (1963-78)

A few weeks after Henk reported brother superior Gregorius to the police, Gregorius was spirited out of Harreveld boarding school. Records in the Dutch state attorney’s office reveal that he was never prosecuted, for “lack of evidence.” His congregation quickly moved him to New Glasgow, in Nova Scotia, where he helped set up a home for the mentally handicapped and worked for many years, according to a Dutch newspaper.

John Paul I (1978)

John Paul II (1978-2005)
Gregorious, whose given name was Gregory van Buuren, died in 1993 of natural causes, at the retirement home of his congregation in the Netherlands

Benedict XVI (2005—)

Interesting the Roman Catholic Church spirited him to the New world and Nova Scotia- I lived in the maritime provinces and know the area well…….ah the Man of God……. working with the mentally handicapped being “their shepherd”. It seems, according to my research, the higher-ups of the Roman Catholic Church in these cases just removed the priests not the problem and due to their decisions of cover-up caused untold misery in the lives of so many youngsters. And “governments” who enabled are as much to blame and still the “good old boys of power” are still at it.

One has to wonder as congregations all over the world listened to their “parish priest”, piled the money into the collections plates,listened to the words of “God” and love , peace , humility and good -will toward men- just who was doing the preaching and handing out the confessional penance – was it the man of the cloth sent not for his reverent goodness to shepherd the flock but one who was hiding – pedophilia and abuse under the robes of religion?


And now I will probably have to make a choice of a President based upon the candidates who are put before me by those whose “religious beliefs/ faith have the most money/ influence from “religious supporters ” You can see the cow-towing going on every day in the news media, as the election process is covered.

I believe this situation is fraught with danger. Not only is the mixture of religion and politics bad for your digestion it can cause untold misery – just ask any survivor of the Holocaust.

Holocaust. 75% of the country’s( Holland/Netherlands) Jewish population were exterminated, a much higher percentage than countries like Belgium and France.

I came across in this far-reaching scandal( although I must have missed the coverage locally) on-line through various internationally known publications- first through the BBC but since this filth of abuse and deception has spread world-wide the situation reaches past the Roman Catholic and Christian community for instance Hindu website has picked up on the story
and their editor states:

Editor’s Note: Most of the sexual abuse of boys in Holland took place in Don Bosco houses by Salesian priests. This should be of concern to Indians as the Salesians of Don Bosco have a huge presence in India and operate numerous boys homes and schools. In his biography, Here is the Heart of a Priest, former Vincentian seminarian K. P. Shibu Kalamparambil describes in detail the goings-on in Indian Catholic seminaries. His book has sent shock waves through the Indian Christian community and should be of major concern to Hindus too as their children are schooled in Catholic institutions.

As the religious leaders as high up as the Vatican sought to send their “priests of perversion “ out of the public eye and out of the harms way of punishment – they, like the plague spread their filth worldwide……

The hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church and not only the church and faith-based institutions world-wide but those in power who enable( even the cover- up by the media) have a lot to answer for ….. SUFFER little children…………… and a reason for a TRUE” separation of Church and State” ( no matter the religious persuasion) because if you can’t trust the “men of God ” well Gott Mit Uns maybe the jack boot of right by might will be found marching to YOUR door one day no matter YOUR beliefs……………………from one who has felt the arrogance -albeit in a “small way” compared to those that have suffered so much- but the prinicple is the same ……….

April 9, 2012 at 3:36 pm 8 comments

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April 2012