Yeah, so my oldest brother who lives in Pennsylvania has had a heart attack (he’s fine, just a bit scared) and Mom is running off to see him tomorrow sometime — not sure when. I’m to hang out at her house for four days and feed her pets until she gets back. She has promised not to take the router with her like she did that one time but without my precious Orville I won’t be able to update Charley. I hope to get an update in tomorrow before I have to leave.
I suppose I shall be bored out of my mind. Mom lives eleven miles from the nearest traffic light, twelve from the nearest store, and has no Netflix, Hulu, nothing. I’ll bring lots of books and my Kindle Fire.
In the meantime I’ve got a new Executed Today entry: the Jews of Trunovskoye, a small village in Russia, who were gassed on this day in 1942. The event was recorded in a letter by a teenage survivor who was still alive in Moldova as of 2009. It would be really cool if she found my entry and commented on it, or if her kids did or something. That’s happened before; on my entry for Holocaust victim Max Hertz, for example, one of his grandchildren commented.
I’m pleased to announce that Preston Winfrey, a Missouri father of three and founder of a remote software and web development company called Ready Launch (website | Facebook) has volunteered to redesign the Charley Project’s website and drag it into the 21st century. At present, technology-wise, it’s stuck firmly in the mid-1990s.
This has actually been on the books for awhile but I didn’t want to say anything because I wasn’t sure it would go anywhere. I can’t pay Preston for this, so this is a strictly volunteer project, and in the past I’ve had people promise to redesign my site and then lose interest and disappear. But now I’m confident that Preston will follow through.
Preston is, of course, a true crime enthusiast and said he wants to “help in any way I can bring visibility to missing persons and want to fight for justice for those who can’t fight for themselves.” One of my own personal mottoes (a quote often misattributed to Theodore Roosevelt) is: “Do what you can with what you have, where you are.” With his mad skillz at programming, Preston is doing what he can with what he has where he’s at, and that’s all you can expect from any of us.
He has already shown me a prototype of what the site might look like — with help from web designer Rick Brewer of S03 Creative.
He wants to make my website mobile-friendly, and searchable in all kinds of ways, and both more user-friendly and operator-friendly. I look forward to working with him.
Last spring-ish, on the advice of my dentist and about a million other people, I decided to stop drinking so much pop. I fell off the wagon in November, and I decided I’d better get back on before my trip to Poland, because I believe pop is both more expensive and hard to find there.
End result is I’ve been sleeping most of the day for the better part of a week.
I think I’m back on the wagon now, and I’ll update later today — much later, because in a little bit I’m taking off for Reynoldsburg, where they’re holding a missing persons event and Gina DeJesus is going to speak.
Spent much of the night prying photographs loose from the Newspapers.com archives, for MP cases that have NamUs pages but no pictures. My efforts yielded… three pictures. That’s all. But three pictures means three casefiles for the Charley Project, and perhaps the photos I found will eventually migrate to NamUs, so there you go.
It’s really frustrating when I know a ton of information about a case but I can’t put it on Charley due to lack of a picture. NamUs, for instance, has the case of an HIV-positive infant who was abducted by her babysitter back in the 1980s. Plenty of details, interviews with her parents, name and description of the babysitter (whose identity is known), etc — but I have no photo of the baby. (And without her AZT drugs, that baby is almost certainly dead now.)
There was another case I found where a teenager was washed away in a flood, along with the busload of people of he was sitting in. His was the only body not recovered, and for years afterwards his parents persisted in the hope that he might still be alive. It’s a very sad story and again, there are plenty of details. In fact, Newspapers.com actually had a picture of this kid, but it was of such poor quality that even I, with my utterly abysmal standards, could not accept it. So disappointing!
I had mentioned having woes with our service provider (which happens to be Frontier — after five solid months of over-billing us, you guys can go jump in a lake). We are switching to another provider (Xfinity, which also has a horrible record, but it’s the only other choice in this town) but it will take a day or two. So it looks like today and Wednesday there shall be no internet access at home. It’s probably been cut off already but as I’m at the library I don’t know. That is all.