Tuesday, January 24, 2006


Why is your dad in jail?
The attempted murder of his third wife or girlfriend. I'm not sure of her title since according to Dad he never officially divorced his second wife. I've since learned from court records that he and his victim were not married even though he says they were.

How long has he been in prison?
He was arrested June 27, 2002 and sentenced in October 30, 2002 to 20 years with a possibility of parole after serving 10 years.

Is he guilty?
If you ask him, he is not. If you ask the cops who arrested him, he is. Twelve of his peers agreed with the cops. His request for an appeal was denied. Read how the press reported it.

Was this the first time he ever did anything like this?
No. At the time of the attempted murder, he was on probation for spousal abuse committed against the same woman he tried to kill months later.

Years before, during the summer before my senior year in high school, he assaulted my mom over the course of several hours. Had I not been there to stop him, who knows how things would have ended.

Did he go to jail for hurting your mom?
No. This was Texas in the days before Nicole Brown Simpson was murdered. The cops simply told him leave. He did. Then came back a few minutes later even more furious. The cops came back and arrested him for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. He never served time because my mother would not press charges or testify against him.

What happened to the man you married when you were in high school aka The Sailor?
He is in his home state of Ohio happily remarried for almost 15 years. I still talk and visit with him and his family regularly. I can't thank them enough for saving me; for taking me in and loving me. I was destined for not so great things with no real family of my own to help me and they helped change that. 

Why are your parents deaf?
My dad and three of his sisters were born deaf but six other siblings were not. So, who knows. There was never any history in his family and no one has been deaf since.

My mom was born hearing, so she can speak. Very beautifully, in fact. Her hearing rapidly deteriorated so that she began attending deaf school at age 16. Her sister was born deaf as were both of her parents (my grandparents) and her mother's brothers and sisters were all deaf.

Then why aren't you deaf?
Dad's genes overrode Mom's, I guess.

Do you know sign language?
Yes. Growing up with a Deaf family using American Sign Language ("ASL") is just like growing up around any other language. So, if my parents spoke only Spanish, I would be fluent in Spanish instead.

Then how did you learn to talk?
By hearing the television, my mom and brother (also hearing) and the world around me. I actually began speaking in sign language first as a baby. In fact, this photo was taken when I was only six months old saying "Mama" in sign language. By the time I was sixteen months old, I was speaking fluently and singing songs in both voice and sign language. So if you ever questioned the validity of those studies with babies and sign language, don't!

From a reader, comes this question (edited for grammar and context):   I have been reading Love, Daddy and I wonder if some of the stories aren't true but to make it more interesting you add some ficition to attract people to read it. Right?
1,000% wrong. Have you heard of James Frey? I'm not a writer by trade like Mr. Frey. So while he is able to write about things that may or may not have ever happened, I do not possess the talent to do so. All the stories I recount here are true from my personal perspective and experience. Why would fiction need to be added anyway when the truth is so wonderfully rich?

Here's a great essay on memory and writing memoirs that sums it all up better than I ever could.


Anonymous said...

Sending Coda Love to you from Lynn (CODA) in OHIO. Much love to you and hugs.

Anonymous said...

wow! What a life story. You must be a really strong person.

CODAHugs. From Argnetina. =)