Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Something intensely personal

This is entirely personal, so if such stuff bores you, the Internet is full of blogs with more entertainment value.

I mentioned in a past post that I was trying to revive an old manuscript and breathe some new life into it. I just call the thing The Book, as I’ll never try this stunt again.

Someone, probably a great author, once remarked that we all have at least one book in us. I took my shot at it, and it isn’t working out. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but trying to deal with my father’s murder through a literary device just doesn’t work. It brings me to realities of dirty cops and protected witnesses, and such things don’t have the literary appeal they did in the 1980s. It might make a fairly good novel, or even a decent screenplay, but I don’t have the stomach for it any longer.

I’m in the later stages of middle age; when I am gone, no one will remain to speak for my father. This disturbs me; he deserves better. I have no brothers or sisters; my mother is gone.

Yeah, yeah…you’ve heard and read all this before. To the uninitiated, it seems like a sick obsession. I have one simple reply to that: have your father gunned down in the driveway of his home, and see how you deal with it. I promise you, it won’t be a walk on the beach.

I have a deputy investigator committed to bring me my father’s murder file. After 23 years, they are totally out of leads, and the cop says it might be time to let me take a look at the known facts. I understand the police doctrine of keeping the “nearest and dearest” at arm’s length and looking at us with a degree of suspicion, but two decades-plus is about long enough. The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Department was totally corrupt and inept in the 1980s, and the allegations of protected witnesses and known suspects are too numerous to be ignored. Persons in the federal witness protection program have been known to go on killing sprees before, and my father and three others were victims of a serial killer.

I’d love to have a “cold case cop” step up to the plate, but at this late date, even the execrable Greta Van Susteren won’t touch this case. The last bit of closure—and I hate that word—will come when I read Dad’s file.