Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I asked Michael to write a little bit about his childhood, his youth. Understandably, he doesn't want to be critical of his birth parents so what I can share is limited. Although his father is deceased, his mother is alive and now visits him periodically.

He writes, I forgave my Mom and Dad years ago for what I went through as a child, as a youngster and as a teenager. What he is comfortable sharing, I think, says a lot about why he ended up as and where he did.

The following is from Michael, with the full names of his siblings removed and indicated by initials only.

I was born June first at 5:50 p.m. in 1959, and I was the 3rd boy born. I have an older brother named A, and then a brother named R, and then I was born. I have a sister that is a year younger than me, her name is K, and then I have another sister named T that is a year younger than K. Us 5 kids are all a year a part. My Mother and Father divorced while we were all young children. I had learned that my mother took all 5 of us, but then my dad came and got us 3 boys and he put us in orphanage homes. I ended up staying in an orphanage home the longest, and I never had that much contact with my Mom and Dad for many many years, yet, inside I knew I wasn't where I was supposed to be, I was supposed to be home with my family. I wasn't aware what was going on between my Mom and Dad. I was in the custody of Catholic Charities and was bounced around from the Villa (Saint Anthony's Villa Orphanage Home in Toledo, Ohio) to many Foster care homes. I was even thrown in Dayton Psychiatric Hospital, and then thrown into Maumee Youth Camp (Maumee, Ohio). Excuse me, the real name is Dayton's Children's Psychiatric Hospital in Dayton, Ohio.

When I was at the Villa I remember waking up in a baby crib yelling, screaming and crying because there was a Monster outside the window trying to get in the room at me, the Nun would come and turn on the light and picking me out of the baby crib and putting me in her bosom and trying to calm me down! I only remember bits and pieces of that place, and I only remember bits and pieces of the 2nd time I was in the Villa (at a new location). I remember parts of the Children's Psychiatric Hospital in Dayton, where I ended up running away, and I remember bits and pieces of Maumee Youth Camp, I ended up running from that place too. I was in a few foster homes and a few group homes in between. I remember my first stealing offense when I ran away from Maumee, I stole a candy bar out of a drug store and ate it on the steps outside. I was hungry. I also remember going in some people's homes to find something to eat when I ran away from Dayton. I had become a member of the Boys Club several years later in the 70's. However, my first Juvenile sentence occurred in 1970 for possession of marijuana and discharging a firearm downtown on July 4th, I ended up going to the Ohio Youth Commission about 5 or 6 times. . .

Between the summer of 1970, when Michael turned eleven years old, and April of 1977, Michael was, as he writes, in and out of the Ohio Youth Commission. On 1 June 1977, Michael turned 18. In August, because of conflicts with his father, he was living in the YMCA on Jefferson Avenue in Toledo, working the streets and odd jobs, and receiving a $4.oo per diem from the state for meals.

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