My Fourth of July present to you: an ET entry

July 4, 2015

For today, Executed Today commemorates the shooting deaths of an unknown number of Jews and Poles shot by a Nazi Einsatzkommando, the event written about in all its gruesome detail in the diary of one of those Nazis, a young man by the name of Felix Landau.

I took a course on World War II a few years ago, in college. It was actually the professor’s specialty, but she knows far more about the Pacific Front than the European Front and, as for the Holocaust, she had nothing to teach me. I don’t pretend to be an expert on the subject, not having been formally taught about it or having read any of the sources in their original languages, but I have read 502 books related to it. Occasionally (in an email, not during class, so as not to embarrass her) I would correct this professor’s  pronunciation of certain Nazi camp names: (for example, “Dr. G, hi, I just wanted to say that It’s May-dan-ek, not Maj-dan-ek, the Polish language pronounces their J’s like Y’s. Sincerely, Meaghan Good.”)

Anyway, we got to the business of gas chambers and she repeated the oft-used statement about good old German efficiency. I raised my hand and told her, essentially, what I wrote in today’s Executed Today entry: that the Germans switched to gas not because it was more efficient but because the soldiers assigned to do the shooting were literally being driven stark raving mad by the nature of their work.

“But gas chambers ARE more efficient,” she said, rather wearily. I suppose she didn’t like a student openly disagreeing with her in the middle of a class session and probably thought I was an arrogant twit for having done so. “At maximum capacity, Auschwitz killed X number of people a day.”

“Yes,” I said, “and have you ever heard of the massacre at Babi Yar?” She didn’t react, so I assumed she had not. “33,000 people in two days. With guns. Auschwitz’s gas chambers wouldn’t have been able to do it.”

“The gas chambers were more efficient,” she repeated.

“I know a lot of the books say that. But it is simply not true.”

“Yeah, well, we have to back to the lesson, so…”

I thought about emailing her with some sources to back up my argument but decided it was not worth trying. I did get an A in the course, something I consider quite an accomplishment, given that I was straight in the swing of the Great Headache Crisis at the time and attended every class either in either level 7 to 9 pain or in an opiate fog. In fact, half the reason I argued with her that day was to try to keep from nodding off, not because her lecture was boring or anything but because of the MS-Contin.

But that has nothing to do with anything. I hope you guys — well, I don’t think “enjoy” is the right word — but I hope you find some benefit from reading my entry about Felix Landau’s work.

A bit about YouTubing

July 4, 2015
  1. I create videos entirely alone with a microphone Michael bought me and a movie maker you can download free from the Windows website. It’s pretty cool. (I sure hope it works  with Windows 10.)
  2. I accept suggestions but my choices my own.
  3. If a relative or the police asked me to take down video,  I will.
  4. If an MP is found alive I will remove their video.
  5. If an MP is found dead I’m not sure what I’d do. Maybe leave the video up as a memorial, with a note on saying they were found deceased.
  6. I am planning a profile of people to make videos about: their cases must have a clearly recognizable photo I can use (not the Anderson sisters, I’m afraid), aren’t really famous and are not a case like this idiot where it is perfectly  clear what happened. There must be some kind of a story there but with of  so many details it will take a long time to summarize. The song in the video is one minute and thirty seconds long, and the beginning and end of the videos both take eight seconds each. leaving me 99 to tell the story.  My goal is to grab viewers and have them click on that Charley Project Link.

So that’s it. If anyone has something to say, you know where to find me.

[EDIT: Gah. I had taken a certain sleep aid/muscle relaxer prior to writing this entry and reacted very badly; it turned me into a gibbering idiot. Practically every word I wrote had some error in it. I might as well have been extremely drunk. It took me the better part of an hour to write this entry because I had to go back and correct everything with fingers that didn’t work right…and this morning I see I didn’t get it all. I have fixed the last of the mistakes and apologize for my word choice and spelling not having been up to its usual standard.]

YouTube Saturday: I am just on fire this week

July 4, 2015

Gotcher vids, hot and fresh: eleven of them to be exact, covering sixteen MPs. In chronological order:

Alfred James Grimes and Sammy Lloyd Jackson, 1968

Barbara Aurora Burhans, Carmen Garcia and Diego Garcia, 1982

Jasmine Kirlissa Collins and Melissa Ann Collins, 1991

Keith Chau and Ai Wei Kaung, 1995

Ruben David Felix, 1997

Yim Yeung Tsui, 1998

Yamaira Vivian Montes-Gonzalez, 2000

Sonya Lynn Bradley, 2002

Yaroslav Victorovich Iventyev, 2003

Joey Lynn Offutt, 2007

Marizela C. Perez, 2011

Flashback Friday: The Westerfield Boys

July 3, 2015

This week’s Flashback Friday case is actually two people who disappeared together: Alan Westerfield, seven, and his brother Terry, eleven, last seen at a movie theater in Fayetteville, North Carolina on September 12, 1964. That’s over fifty years ago.

The prime suspect in the brothers’ disappearances appears to be their stepfather, Carl Bock, but I’m not sure he’s even still alive anymore. If he is he’d be in his nineties. I tried Googling “Carl Bock Wisconsin” (the last state I know he was living in) and didn’t find any obituaries, but that doesn’t mean much. Alan and Terry’s biological father committed suicide in 1978, according to this article, in part because of his depression over his sons’ disappearances.

Sad story all around. But they all are.

Zulma Pabon’s photo, part deux

July 2, 2015

I have had some consideration and thought about what the commenters on this blog have had to say, and decided to remove the disputed photograph of Zulma Lexandra Pabon, the one everyone thinks looks nothing like the others. Because, in spite of the Virginia State Police’s reassurances, I’m still not sure it’s her. The different hair and darker skin tone could conceivably be explained by makeup, hair dye/perm, lighting, etc. But it’s the chin that gets me: the woman in the first photo has an almost triangular face, with a very sharp chin. In the other photos Zulma’s face looks rounder, even square-ish, with a much less pronounced chin.

So the photo’s gone. It’s not like I don’t already have a bunch of others. And if it turns out, down the line, that I find out for sure that picture from the VA state police site really is of her, I can just put it back up.

New website about Idaho Cold Cases

July 1, 2015

The webmaster sent me a link to their new website, East Idaho Cold Cases, which covers both missing persons and unsolved murders in that state. I thought I’d mention it here on this blog. I’ve just glanced at it so far but it’s got some info in the MP section that Charley doesn’t have. The more the merrier, I say.

This doesn’t make much sense

July 1, 2015

Per the Stockton Police Department’s missing persons section, Dena Viola McHan was last seen wearing a thick white sweater, too-big Jordache jeans, nylons and open-toed shoes. Fine. It also says: “She was originally wearing brown wool pants.”

What does that mean, anyway? My own clothing description noted the pants and says they were soiled; I’ve since taken that part out.

My guess is that Dena put on the wool pants that morning, they became soiled while she was out and about, and she had to borrow someone else’s jeans to replace them, which is why they were three sizes too big. But in that case, why does the Stockton PD mention her wool pants at all? Was she carrying them with her? Did they get found somewhere after she vanished? Inquiring minds want to know. LE sure works in mysterious ways sometimes.

Zulma Pabon’s photo

July 1, 2015

Two people have asked, so I thought I would make a statement about the first photograph in Zulma Pabon‘s casefile. Yes, I know it doesn’t look like the other ones. But yes, I believe it’s really her, unless the Virginia State Police really screwed up, cause that’s where I got the picture from.

[EDIT: Okay, I just called up the Virginia State Police myself and brought it to their attention. They assured me that this really is her photograph, provided to them by the Chesterfield Police, and it’s a driver’s license picture. DMV photos never seem to look much like you anyway, and perhaps this is an older one or something. But it really is her.]

Expect a big update for tomorrow

June 30, 2015

I’ve been raiding the absolutely wonderful Iowa Cold Cases website and it has yielded rich nuggets of information. I’ve written updates for 26 cases and I’m not done yet. w00t!

MP of the week: Robert Putman

June 30, 2015

This week’s featured missing person is Robert C. Putman, who was 78 when he went missing from Missouri in 2000 and would now be 93. Since he suffered from dementia and a pretty severe heart condition, I doubt he survived long after his disappearance. My guess is that his body is somewhere close by to where he went missing.


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