Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Decatur Again: School Shooting Season Begins

Decatur, Georgia, was in the news a week ago. A school shooting nearly became deadly, and, I speculate because of the publicity about it, a workplace shooting occurred over the weekend.

Mass shootings follow a known pattern - another form of school, business-related, or mass violence usually comes within days of a well-publicized event - then more routinely another shooting happens in a week, two weeks, a month, and a year. It doesn't always take place with such regularity, but it often does.

The other predictor of future shootings is the copycat effect that comes into play after an end of the school year outburst. It feels like a Newtown bounce this fall may happen; I hope not but such a possibility is worthy of being on our radar.

Awareness is a key. People protecting others in schools, colleges, malls, churches, workplaces, and similar locations need to be alert. We are entering a dangerous "red zone" time of year. 

The Rebirth of Pan (1st edition, Firebird Press, 1983)

Mysterious America (1st edition cover, Faber & Faber, 1983)

Decatur again. Yes. We are use to Decatur in the weird news. Jim Brandon pointed out "Decatur" as a "power name" in his The Rebirth of Pan in 1983, and I wrote about it as part of the "Name Game" in Mysterious America, also first in 1983.

First described as "Atlanta-area," the "almost deadly" school shooting happening last Tuesday, August 20, 2013, occurred at Decatur, Georgia's Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy. The elementary school was named for the second AfricanAmerican astronaut, who died aboard the Challenger, the space shuttle that exploded after takeoff on January 28, 1986.

Michael Brandon Hill, 20, opened fire in the school, using an AK-47, to six bullets in the floor of the office. But as he was calmed down by school bookkeeper Antoinette Tuff, who spoke to Hill while on the phone with the 911 operator. She talked him into surrendering, and the publicity was heightened when President Obama called her a "hero."

Investigator T.L. Wortham of the DeKalb County Sheriff Department's Fugitive Unit told the media that as officers were apprehending the suspect, Hill said, "I'm sorry, I'm off my meds." Several weapons were seized, Wortham said.

Hill took a photo of himself (a "selfie") with an AK 47-style rifle and packed up nearly 500 rounds of ammunition — enough to shoot more than half the school's students - police later said.

After the Decatur incident, another shooting - with six shot - occurred on Saturday, August 25, 2013, in Lake Butler, Florida. The alleged shooter, Hubert Allen Jr., 72, was reported dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound after a “complete shooting rampage” at Pritchett Trucking. The owner of Pritchett Trucking and the farm, Rolling Oaks, Marvin Pritchett, 80, was first killed. Allen then drove to a local bar where he shot and killed Romando Gonzales Delgado, 28, and then killed himself. The gunman was identified as the step-grandfather of Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller.

Decatur, Georgia, has had its brushes with infamy in the recent past.

In June 5, 2012, a fight lead to a stabbing Decatur’s Columbia High School. Two days later, on Thursday, June 7, 2012, a gun was brought to the DeKalb County school after stabbing incident. And then on Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, loaded guns were seized at two area high schools.

Mark David Chapman, the assassin of Beatle John Lennon, attended Decatur, Georgia's Columbia High School from 1971-1975. (His high school photograph is at top.)

Decatur, Illinois's old Transfer Station use to be located near Lincoln Square, named after the assassinated Illinois president.

My old hometown’s name, Decatur, (of Decatur, Illinois) has a Fortean mystique and synchromysticism about it that has created all kinds of mojo.

Several locations are named "Decatur" across the United States of America.

Such sites are named after the War of 1812′s Navy hero, Stephen Decatur, who fought against the Barbary pirates. Decatur at one time conducted tests in the Pine Barrens of New Jersey in 1804, and fired on the Jersey Devil. The records say that Stephen Decatur identified the winged creature as a “devil” – pale in color, with leathery bat-like wings. Decatur perforated one of the thing’s wings with a fired cannonball, but it seemed unfazed, which disturbed everybody who was there at the time. It flew off.

The word decatur (French in origin) is loosely translated as “dweller at the sign of the cat,” and Native Americans who lived in the area that is now Central Illinois had numerous stories of encounters with large dark predatory cats, which are still sighted in the area to this very day.

Stephen Decatur, a Masonic figure of some noteworthiness, is responsible, as well, for the Stephen Decatur House in Washington D.C., which is located on Lafayette Square.

Should we be surprised if an outburst of new violence occurs in the wake of the copycat effect recoil from Newtown? Will it "pick" a location with a "power name"?

How can the next wave be prevented? Certainly, ignoring the patterns of the past is not wise.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Murder on Twilight Beach Road

Rising baseball star Christopher Lane, 22, grew up in Oak Park in Melbourne, Australia’s north and was in America on a sports scholarship. His life ended in a random killing in the USA.

Lane was jogging through an area of "high dollar homes" after leaving the home of his American girlfriend, Sarah Harper, when he was followed and shot at the intersection of Country Club Road and Twilight Beach Road. Lane, of course, means a narrow way,  passage or track between walls, hedges, or fences.

Three teenagers, 15, 16, and 17, two black, one white, decided to make a name for themselves, and kill someone. They murdered Lane during a random drive-by shooting in the town of Duncan, Oklahoma. Local law enforcers noted that the alleged killers came up from behind Lane, shot him in the back with a small-calibre handgun and sped off. The alleged suspects are named Chancey Luna, Michael Jones and James Edwards.

Lane's murder has shocked the residents of Duncan, a quiet city of 25,000 people in southern Oklahoma, and his teammates at East Central University, where Lane won a scholarship to be the team's catcher.

ECU's mascot is the tiger.

The town has had only one other murder the past five years. Source.

Duncan, Oklahoma once adopted the slogan, "The Buckle on the Oil Belt". Its main claim to fame is as the birthplace of the Halliburton Corporation. Erle P. Halliburton (statute above) perfected a new method of cementing wells, making oil production much easier and more profitable, and established the New Method Oil Well Cementing Company in 1919. He died in 1957, at which time the company had 201 offices in 22 states and 20 foreign countries. Halliburton maintains seven different complexes in Duncan plus an employee recreational park, but the corporate offices relocated first to Dallas and later to Houston.
Halliburton operates the Halliburton Technology Center in Duncan. In 2010 Halliburton announced that 150 jobs in the center will move to Houston over the following two years. Source.

For more insights and information on the background and details of this murder, please see the Red Dirt Report.

Andrew W. Griffin / Red Dirt Report

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Skyfall Stunt's James Bond Dies

Remember the big stunt at the Summer Olympics?

There was a tie-in to the then forthcoming 007 movie, Skyfall. (Skyfall's trailer splashed the prophetic Aurora building on the screen before The Dark Knight Rises began.)

A James Bond double "fell" into the Olympics stadium, along with a double for Queen Elizabeth, as both jumped from a small plane.

Both jumpers were in danger, as such stunts are no easy task. And now the James Bond double is dead.

Mark Sutton, 42, the stuntman who parachuted into the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics in London dressed as James Bond alongside a double of Queen Elizabeth II, was killed on August 15, 2013, in a wing-diving accident in the Swiss Alps.

Sutton, a former Royal Gurkha Rifles officer for the British Army, died after jumping from a helicopter and crashing into a mountain ridge only minutes from the French border near Trient, Switzerland, the Swiss police said. (The Gurkhas are a unique unit in the Army with a reputation of being amongst the finest and most feared soldiers in the world. All Gurkha soldiers are recruited in Nepal. British Officers are recruited from across the UK and Commonwealth.)

Mark Sutton (left) - played James Bond - and Gary Connery (right) - played the Queen - are pictured in their wingstuits last year.

The Olympic stunt was a highlight of the last year’s opening ceremony and followed the showing of a film in which Daniel Craig, the actor who currently plays James Bond, called at Buckingham Palace to meet the real Queen Elizabeth and escort her to the Olympic Stadium.

Danny Boyle, who designed the opening to the Games, said Sutton and Gary Connery, who doubled for the Queen and jumped with Daniel Craig's substitute from a helicopter over the Olympic stadium, had "left indelible memories for people from all walks of life all over the world … disciplined and brave in situations most of us would find terrifying, Mark was also a gentle and thoughtful man," he wrote in the Evening Standard.

Police in the Swiss Valais canton said Sutton had died after jumping with a friend from a helicopter while wearing a wing suit above the Grandes Otannes area, close to the French border. The men had jumped from a height of 10,826ft (3,300m) at around 11am and had planned to land close to the hamlet of Le Peuty, near Trient.
Jean-Marie Bornet, of Valais police, said Sutton's injuries were so severe that experts had to use a DNA test to confirm his identity. "We do not know what caused his death but we know it was immediate. The weather was good but when a pilot takes part in this sport the aim is to fly very close to the ground or mountainside. If you do this at speeds of 200kmh [125mph] the margin for error is very small." Source.

Sutton is a name that means "south."

Monday, August 12, 2013

Brazil's Amityville Copycat Killer & NY's Amityville Kid

"There's nothing like it on the market. Not at this price." ~ Real estate agent to George and Kathy Lutz, in The Amityville Horror, 1979.

Synchromystic events happen when you may least expect them. 

A Time reporter started contacting me on Wednesday and Thursday, August 7 and 8, 2013, asking me questions about the impact of movies on copycat killings. He said there had been some murders in Brazil, and he was doing a story for Time.

But I was in the midst of traveling to a conference in Michigan. I couldn't assist him too greatly, other than confirming, yes, copycats are well-documented and well-cited in the research on behavior contagion.

The reporter, Noah Rayman, finished his story on August 8th. It has a chilling opening:
It was a tragic incident, as inexplicable as it was shocking. According to local police, Marcelo Pesseghini, a 13-year-old Brazilian boy in Sao Paulo, took his father’s pistol late Sunday night [August 4, 2013] and shot his policemen parents, his grandmother, his great aunt and, the next day, himself.
The killings shocked the country and drew international coverage that pounced on indications that he was inspired by the 1974 murder of a family in Amityville, New York (the basis for the supernatural horror book and subsequent film, The Amityville Horror). Time.
 Marcelo Pesseghini is shown with his policeman father and his mother.

The evidence of the copycat effect was clearcut, although there were other theories, including one about the boy wanting to become a "hitman." Still, the copycat behaviors demonstrated by the Pesseghini teen were unmistakable. Rayman wrote:
Investigators say they found a separate revolver in his school backpack, and they spoke to a friend of Marcelo Pesseghini’s who said the boy had said he wanted to be a hired killer and planned to kill his parents and run away in his mother’s car. He had also uploaded to social media a famous photograph that ostensibly depicts the ghost of one of the victims in the Amityville massacre, when, in 1974, Ronald DeFeo Jr. shot and killed his parents, two brothers, and two sisters while they slept.
 The Amityville "ghost" photograph (above) that Pesseghini posted.

The boy's father's name was Luiz, and the name of the family that lived and was allegedly "haunted" by the Amityville house was Lutz.

I journeyed to the MIPARACON gathering in Michigan, and quickly discovered, when I was introduced to him by author Jeff Belanger, that one table over from me was the son from the actual Amityville Horror home. It was fellow speaker Phoenix resident Christopher Quaratino (Lutz). 

Just by chance, on Saturday night, at the VIP speakers dinner, I was seated between Chris (pictured) and Amy Bruni. It all seemed more than a coincidence.

The Amityville "horror" allegedly began when six of seven members of the Ronald DeFeo family were methodically murdered as they slept in their beds, with only one person as the sole survivor of the grisly suburban New York bloodbath. Ronald DeFeo Jr., the eldest son, was convicted of the murders.

Chris Quaratino (Lutz) felt forced to come out of the closet about his childhood experiences by the fact another movie about the Amityville traumas was being made.

The story is one familiar to many. Chris's mother Kathy married George Lutz in 1974. During that marriage, they purchased the house at 112 Ocean Avenue, for around $80,000, and moved in on December 18, 1975. She was the mother of 5 children, three (including Chris) from her previous marriage and two daughters with George. Strange things supposedly began to happen in the house. They included the odor of a very sweet/cheap perfume, and the sensation of a woman coming up and embracing Kathy from behind, plus slime oozing from the walls. 

Kathy supposedly levitated and George awoke at 3:15 am (the recorded time of the DeFeo murders). As the story unfolded, a marching band was heard only by George, and a demonic pig named Jodie befriended the Lutz's daughter. The family fled the New York house after 28 days. Stating that they would never return, they did come back for a yard sale a few weeks later. 

What did Kathy and George Lutz say in response, years later, to those who believe they perpetuated a hoax? Kathy stated that there is nothing she can say or show to people as proof - all she has is her testimony, which is true. George told people that he wishes it was all a hoax.

Kathy died August 17, 2004. George died May 8, 2006. They had divorced. The major chronicler of the story of their 28 days in the house is Jay Anson.

Several other books and movies have been created about the events of the so-called Amityville Horror. That the events would be a model for copycats, even in Brazil, is no surprise. 

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

News Surfing Name Games and Lexi-Links During the Summer of 2013

Weird summer, if you ask me. Lots of little random killings, interwoven with sudden deaths and surprise happy happenings.

The snake story is the one getting everyone's attention, for a variety of sad reasons. 

It is a horrible story to hear that two boys were killed in New Brunswick by an African rock python (Python sebae) on August 5, 2013. Source.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police are investigating the “sudden deaths of two young boys,” whom they believe were strangled by a python that escaped from a local pet store in the town of Campbellton, New Brunswick.

The snake escaped its enclosure at Reptile Ocean pet shop and slithered up a ventilation duct to the apartment above the pet store where the boys were sleeping, CBC News reported. The two victims had been spending the night at the home of a friend, after spending an afternoon petting llamas and goats.

The bodies of the two boys — identified as Connor Barthe, 7, and his brother, Noah, 5, according to The Toronto Star — were discovered early Monday, August 5, 2013, and police arrived at the scene at approximately 6:30 a.m.

Barthe is French in origins, a topographic name for "someone who lived on a piece of land overgrown with bushes or scrub," from the Old French barthe (a word probably of Gaulish origin). From German, it is a metonymic occupational name for "someone who made (battle) axes," from the Middle High German barte, Middle Low German barde "axe."
Connor means "lover of wolves, canines," or sometimes "wise." Noah means "full of peace."

In the realm of mass shootings, the most recent one happened also yesterday, August 5, 2013.

Fifty-nine-year-old Rockney ("Rockne") Warren Newell, of Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, (above), a self-described junk collector, decided to shoot up a municipal meeting in Rush Township, Pennsylvania. He used a rifle with a scope and shoot through a wall. He was allegedly unhappy about their rulings on his yard. The meeting was winding down at 7:23 p.m. when the shooting broke out. Witnesses described a scene of carnage and chaos following the shooting at the Anchorage Road building. Three men were left dead. (Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4.)

David Fleetwood, Gerard Kozic and James LaGuardia died in the bloody ambush. Frank Piraino Jr. and Linda Kozic were wounded. (Source.)

Newell generally is related to being "of the manor" or from the "new hall."

Warren is a power name, linked to Freemasonry and founding members of the American Revolution. The name is derived from an English family name, which is itself from a Normandy place name La Varenne, of the element garenne (meaning "game park," "game reserve").

The name Rockney, not too surprisingly, is of English-American origin, and means "one who is brash." The shortened version, Rockne, often on its own means "of a rock."

The African rock python killing took place in Campbellton ("town of the Campbells").

Black Watch or Campbell Tartan

Ancient Campbell Tartan

In Scotland, the name Campbell has its origins from two Scottish Gaelic words, cam and béal, meaning "crooked mouth" or "wry-mouthed," originally being a nickname that evolved into a surname. (I have remarked on the significance of the "Bell name" before.)

A purposeful incident of violence over the weekend involved a Campbell.

The driver of a car that slammed into a group of pedestrians on the Venice Beach, California, boardwalk at 6 pm on Saturday, August 4, 2013, killing one woman on her honeymoon and injuring 11 others, "was looking for blood," witnesses said.

Nathan Louis Campbell, 38, was driving a Dodge Avenger down the boardwalk, as he swerved and rammed his vehicle into the tightly packed crowds. Among the 12 people who were plowed into, one was Alice Gruppioni, 32, of Italy, who died in the hospital following the collision.

She was the newlywed daughter of an Italian businessman from Bologna, Italy. She died with her injured husband, Christian Casadei, at her side at a Los Angeles hospital, the newspaper La Republicca reported.

Gruppioni reportedly ran a family business in her hometown, Rastignano, a village just south of Bologna. Gruppioni was the daughter of Valerio Gruppioni, a businessman and former president of the Bologna soccer team.

Other shocking death news came from Italy, earlier.

Actor James Gandolfini died from a heart attack, on June 19, 2013, during a brief vacation in Rome, Italy. He had expected to travel to Sicily on June 22 to receive an award at the Taormina Film Fest. Following a day of sightseeing in Rome in sweltering heat, Gandolfini's 13-year-old son Michael discovered him around 10 pm local time on the bathroom floor at the Boscolo Exedra Hotel in Rome's Piazza della Repubblica. Michael called hotel reception, who in turn called emergency paramedics. Gandolfini reportedly arrived at the hospital at 10:40 pm and was pronounced dead at 11 pm.

Gandolfini was set to star with Steve Carell as rival palaeontologists Edward Drinker Cope and Othniel Marsh in the forthcoming BoneWars, from HBO Films.

More joyful news occurred on July 22, 2013, with the royal birth of George Louis Alexander, heir to the throne, eventually.

This "royal" news was then followed five days later with a mass shooting at a "royal" location.

The building across the street where Carlos Javier Gavilanes was shot by Pedro Vargas, is called Casa Royal, or Royal House in English.

Pedro Alberto Vargas

The gunman, Pedro Vargas, set his Hialeah, Florida, apartment ablaze and went on a shooting spree that killed six people before he was shot to death by a SWAT team after a nearly eight hour-long ordeal, on Saturday, July 27th. Source.

So, in summary: Pedro set his apartment on fire and then shot property managers Samira and Italo Pisciotti when they ran to see what was going on. His next victim was a man on the opposite side of the street, Carlos Gavilanes, who had just returned home from work.
He then broke down the door of another apartment and killed Merly Sophia Niebles, her husband Patricio and her teenage daughter Priscila Perez. After an eight hour standoff, a SWAT team shot Vargas and rescue two hostages that he was holding.

Pedro means "rock." Perez means "little rock."
Finally, an anonymous individual sent this along yesterday:
I noticed on Huff Post today [August 5, 2013] that Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem named their child today. That inspired me to know more about Javier Bardem (I wanted to know his real last name out of curiosity). I then read his wiki profile, and saw that he was one of the few Spaniards to win a BAFTA. That got me curious as to what exactly a BAFTA award was. Turns out it is a British equivalent of the Oscar.
I followed the link to BAFTA and noticed that the CEO of BAFTA is an AMANDA BERRY. Now I realized that "Amanda Berry" is also the name of the kidnapping victim of Ariel Castro. Also, it's interesting to note that the Royal Family are in control of the BAFTAS and have been since the 50's. Prince William (Diana's son) is the current President of BAFTA. I believe that it is conflicting that the Royal Family are who is in charge of awarding the honors when it was stated that "BAFTA is a rate predictor of the Oscar winners and lineup." Just interesting note, perhaps you can lexilink this information in the great way you know how.
Well, I little know what any of it means.

But as it happens, the birth of the Cruz-Bardem child, a daughter, named Luna Encinas Cruz, occurred on July 22, 2013, in Madrid, Spain - on the same day as the British Royal Family's new baby. 

Javier Ángel Encinas Bardem is a Spanish actor. He was born March 1, 1969, in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands, Spain. Penélope Cruz Sánchez is a Spanish actress and model. She was born April 28, 1974, in Alcobendas, Madrid, Spain.

Spanish naming customs call for the name of the father's name to be used as a middle name, and the mother's to be used as the last name, traditionally. Lexilinking of Spanish names has to take these rules into account.

Luna means "moon." The name Encinas is originally derived from the Spanish word encina, which in the region of Castile means "oak tree." Cruz means "cross."

One of Bardem's name is Ángel.

The most hopeful stories coming out of the tragedy of the Castro-Cleveland imprisonments was the efforts of "The Real Angel of Cleveland."

The summer is not over, yet. But Halloween is coming. And winter is coming.