The idea behind Dad Under Fire was to create a safe place for me to talk. Without being judged, shedding light on my problems and maybe helping other realise they’re not alone. It’s a place I want to selfishly use for my own therapy and share some life experiences and some laughs along the way. I feel like I have slightly scratched that surface, but I think I’m ready to dive in with both feet. Part of me held back the really secretive stuff in case I ever revealed my identity, because some of my secrets could hurt some people. I’m not worried about that now, because I have no urge to reveal myself.
There’s really no rhyme or reason to go about this, so I’ll just dive in with this. My grandfather on my dad’s side was a rapist, a murder and he wound up being murdered himself. That’s a big one right? Do I have your attention?
My whole life, from as early as I can remember, I was always told my grandfather was murdered when my dad was only 16. I didn’t have details; all I knew was that he was beaten outside his home by his neighbour with a coffee table leg. I never asked more than that, I mean what else do you need to know? I wasn’t going to ask my dad to relive that time just for my curiosity, so I left it. Fast forward to 2010, and now I’m 30 years old. I have access to the internet, and now I can satisfy my curiosity with Google and no one gets hurt right?
It took a while to find anything. I had to figure out the date based on the time of year my dad usually went to visit the grave site. The year my dad would have been 16, and where he lived at that time. After hours and days of searches, I found it. Strangely enough, a homicide detective in the city decided to post one of his cases online. Sort of like a “day in the life” type piece. Well wouldn’t you know it, he chose to post his notes from my grandfather’s murder. He had witness accounts, miniscule details about what the victim was wearing, the specific injuries he sustained as well as the exact cause of death. It was insane to read about it. I had the address where it happened, and I had no idea it was a place I had driven by regularly, without ever knowing what happened there.
I’ll spare you the details of the murder, but the general idea was this; my grandfather was a drunk, he was abusive to my grandmother, my dad and my uncle. He cheated on my grandmother and actually had a second family with two other kids (I didn’t find this out until last month). He had been sitting with his “friends” at his neighbour’s house drinking one afternoon. During their banter and taking jabs at each other, my grandfather commented on what he would like to do (sexually) his neighbours wife. It wasn’t received well. A fight started, and ended with my grandfather dead. He was beaten with a table leg and dragged across the front lawns and left on his front step where my grandmother and my dad (at 16 years old) found him. If you knew my dad, this would explain a lot.
I decided to look up this detective on Facebook, and would you believe I actually found him? It was very strange to be talking with this detective who was there the day family tree was altered. That event changed everyone from that day after, and affected how I was raised, and how I raise my boys. Unfortunately he didn’t have anything further to add than what the website had already mentioned, but still a strange experience none-the-less.
After finding out all this info, I decided it was time to talk to my dad about it. I showed him the website I found, and told him how I met the detective online. He was pretty surprised by it all. It didn’t bring up bad memories, or upset him like I thought. However, it showed my dad I was old enough to hear the truth about my grandfather. One day he came by and handed me a newspaper article. It had to do with the rape and murder of a young woman many years ago. It was a cold case that was never solved. My dad told me the killer was my grandfather and his brother.
That story goes like this; basically my grandfather was 21 and his brother a couple years older. They were well known to the police in their town as a couple of trouble makers. One they got completely drunk at the local dive bar. They called a female friend of theirs and went to her house for an afterhour’s party. They brought along a guy they met at the bar and when they got there, the lady called a neighbour friend of hers. Drinks continued, and one thing lead to another which led to an orgy (Fucked up right?). Anyway, once it was all said and done, everyone went home. The next morning, the female neighbour that went home was calling her friend. There was no answer, so she walked over. No one answered the door, so she looked through the window. She could see a lifeless leg hanging of the bed. She called the police and broke in to find her two young children crying and hiding in the closet. The woman was naked on the bed with the bed sheet around her neck from being strangled.
Long story short, the random guy from the bar was accused and convicted of the crime. It was later appealed and he was released on the premise he was too physically drunk to have committed the crime. My dad explained to me that my grandfather planted a cigarette rolling paper with the name of the guy from the bar in the sheets when he was called to the crime scene later that day by the police. It was never confirmed, but my dad told me based on what he knew of my grandfather, he’s positive he was the one who strangled her.
This is a story only a handful of people know, and so it’s pretty strange to be posting it here now because of the potential number of readers out there. That being said, it’s kind of a relief to put it out there for all to see and now it doesn’t feel like a dirty secret.
I actually have a long list of things along these lines from my life growing up. I want to delve into all of them now, but I can’t bombard you guys all at once. Who knows what you’ll think of me after reading them. I can tell you though to look forward to the blog about my mother leaving my dad for another woman when I was 10. Then there’s the blog about my Uncle trying to murder my dad, my brother and I. Plus a few others, so stick with me as I figure out how to deal with these demons, and feel free to message me or comment on the post with your questions or thoughts.
Keep your head up and your nuts covered
Dad Under Fire