Monday, 16 March 2015 23:56

1971- 42 Shotwell Street- Kenny drinks Drano

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The following is from a letter to my mom about Jim's army buddy, Kenny, overdosing on pcp, drinking drano and dying: 

"This has been a terrifying week. One of the people I had shared this flat with, had eaten dinners with, watche t.v. with and in general just lived with as part of our "family" flipped out. 

Monday morning I heard some scruffling in his room and so got up to see what the noise was. He was writheing acrosss the floor, apparently overdosed on drugs. He was literally, bouncing off the walls. I was home alone and was afraid to leave him to call an ambulance but I left him on the floor and ran downstairs and frantically called. 

Jim was home by the time the ambulance got there and we decided that if we left him alone, he would probably just come down from the 12 tablets of pcp he had overdosed on, so the ambulance people left.

The day was insane. I went on to school and when I got home, Kenny was still acting strange and would continue to be acting strange through the evening and then Jim went back to work. By this time Kenny was sitting up and had gained enough consciousness to know his own name and to be able to recognize me. We talked for a while and he was very confused, somewhat disoriented and talking about dying. I read to him a little from a book we had in the house about "ego death," thinking that it might explain what had happened to him and that actually he wasn't literally, physically dead.  

I finally went back to thinking he was coming down and a little more together. He was conversing and it seemed as if he thought he was okay. The next day, which I think was Tuesday, we kept an eye on him and he seemed perfectly alright and it was going to be just another day. Kenny had always enjoyed getting high and had taken what I considered very large amounts of drugs before.  I had never liked pcp but Kenny and Jim seemed to love it.

Evening came around and Jim and I were getting dinner ready. We watched a t.v. show and then Jim went to bed and I read for a while. We lost track of what Kenny was doing. Jim was up and went upstairs to see if Kenny was ready to eat because dinner had been cooking and now it was ready. Jim came downstairs looking frightened. There was a glass of what seeemed to be drano mixed with water by the side of Kenny's bed. It dawned on us what might have happened. We looked all over the house for him, out in the back yard and then I ran around the nieghborhood as Jim called the hospitals and police. We settled down in a while and figured we could only wait for him to come back. The doorbell rang and I ran downstairs to answer it. Kenny was leamed against it, spitting up blood. He couldn't speak. Only a gurgling sound came from this throat and blood spurted out from his mouth when he attempted to speak.  Jim called an ambulance. Intense chaos followed as we waited for the ambulance. Finally they came and Jim rode to the hospital with them. 

I followed them to the hospital about fifteen mintues later and got to the hospital just as they were taking Kenny into the operating room. The lye in the drano had burned his mouth and esophagus pretty bad. He wanted to die. We had never known it in months of living together. Jim hadn't known it in years of friendship. 

We waited. The operation discovered that he would proably never be able to eat food again through his mouth. He would require a tube to be fed. He was the most critical patient in the hospital at that moment. Jim called his mother and I went home. I had school the next day. 

The doctors told Jim the next day that when he had regained consiousness, he had tried to pull out the I.V's. When given a pencil to write something, he tried to stab himself. He had no will to live. They think that he will live, though probably just to attempt suicide again. 

I didn't know what to think. Jim and I were in shock. It would be a week before he can have visitors but I won't know what to say when I go to see him. Jim works at the hospital as an orderly and has been able to see him. I am overwhelmed with the circumstances.

Jim and I are going to try and go see Darlene for Thanksgiving but now we will probably be busy getting soemone to move in to help pay rent. Kenny won't be back for a while. We will probably be visiting him a lot. I just don't know what's going to be happening now. I hope that you will write back something enlightening. I look forward to your letters even if I hardly ever write back. 

My typing is so bad and I'm too lazy to retype this letter and it's frustrating to send it. My handwriting is.... 

It's late. The cats are playing. The hamster is sleeping. The fishes are warm. Nobody's fed. I guess I'll feed the fish tonight. One, who's name is Simon Siamese has tail rot and I don't think he's going to live. 

It's raining. San Francisco is a fantastic city. You said that you might come through visiting. I wish you would. Write, Love me. "

 

42shotwell

Kenny had been Jim's army buddy and had been a room mate of Jim when I had moved in with Jim when he lived on 24th street. I don't remember that he lived with us when we initially moved to 14th street. I think that he may have been part of why we moved to Shotwell.

Kenny died a few days after I wrote the letter to my mom. Jim and I ended up moving back to the same previous building we lived in on 14th street. I was paying $60/month rent and $28.00 in food stamps. I'm not sure exactly whre I was getting the sixty dollars a month from though. I did attend classes at City College intermittently and may have used school grants. I was taking a class in Real Estate Law, a basic English class, Music Appreciation and Critical Thinking. I think that I just quit going to the Real Estate and Critical thinking classes as I didn't understand that you must withdraw from classes if you decided to quit going. I got an "F" in each of these because I did not do the withrawal procedure. 

Read 7722 times Last modified on Monday, 04 May 2015 00:59

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Article

01. Introduction

03- Dads Family

03- Photos of my Father and his family

04- My Mother's Family

04- Photos of my Mom

04- Video of my Mom

04- Walling Family Reunions

04-Audio Files of My Mom

04. Billie

04. Ole

04.1. Forbidden Dreams of Love

04.2. Flames of Forbidden Love

04.3 Mom Writing Her Life Story

05- Jim Tarbert

05. Roger

1950's Grandview to Toppenish

1957-1958 1st Grade

1958-1959- Third Grade

1959- Palouse

1961- 4th Grade- Last time I wore a dress

1962- Abilene

1963- Escondido- Early 60's

1964- Darlene Marries Chuck

1964- My Beatle Haircut

1964-The Luv Please

1965 or 1966- Steve Castle

1965- In Foster Care

1966 Living with Darlene & Chuck in Seattle

1967- Juvenile Hall

1976- I Praise Thee (poem to Stanley)

1976- My Second Lover, Stanley Dunne

1976- Paul McCartney and Wings

1976-1330 Bush Street #9J

1977- 1667 Haight Street

1977- Trip to San Diego with Mary Jo

1977-1980- Tumultuous Relationship with John Perry

1978- 525 Haight Street

1979- September- Dad is Murdered

1980's- AIDS- Death and Dying

1980- Winter- First Trip to New York

1980- Word, Sound and Power

1981- Milton- Falling in Love

1982-1993 465 Waller Street

1982-1994 Computers to MacNursing

1984- 33rd Birthday

1985- Graduation from Nursing School

1985- Trip to Hawaii (Oahu)

1988- MIdnight Caller

1989- Earthquake!

1991- Aug 10th- Mom Passes Away

1991- Black Males in Oils

1991- Crack of My Life

1993- Move to Vallejo & Our First Home

1995-1. Road Trip to Washington

1995-2. Surprise Trip to Vegas

1995-3. Grandmother Rogers & Aunts Visit Darlene's

1995-4. Amber

1998- Camping at Russian River

2000 -Thoughts about Progressive Christians

2000- Resignation from John George

2001- April- Trip to Cancun

2001- Peace and Justice

2001- September 11th

2002- April-Puerto Vallarta & Blue Bay Getaway

2002- Nov 12th- My Stepfather, George McHenry Passes Away

2003- Trip to D.C. and N.Y.

2004- Feb- Road Trip to Baha Mexico

2004- Walling Family Reunion in Spokane

2005- Christmas Poem

2005- Darlene Visit for Pride Celebration

2005- Trip to Orlando

2005-1. Europe- London

2005-2. Europe- Paris

2005-3. Europe- Venice

2005-4. Europe- Florence

2005-5. Europe- Rome

2005-6. Europe- Athens

2005-7. Knee Surgery & Tongue Biopsy

2006 Christmas Poem

2006- February 23- Times Herald

2006- Palm Springs White Party

2006- Trip to Seattle

2006-July 8th Solano Peace and Justice Coalition BBQ

2007- Feb- Carnival Destiny- Our First Cruise

2007- Tre and Casey Visit

2008- Aug 15-18 Spokane Visit

2008- Psycho Song

2009- Honored by Vallejo Gay Network

2009- Women in Oils

2010 Christmas Poem

2010- Feb. R.C. Mariner of the Seas Mexican Riviera Cruise

2010- June 24- Badlands

2010- Trip to Seattle

2010-1. Europe- Amsterdam

2010-2. Europe- Paris

2010-3. Europe- Barcelona & Sitges

2010-4. Europe- Madrid

2011-1. Feb. My Fabulous 60th Birthday Weekend

2011-2. April- L.A., Palm Springs & "The White Party"

2011-3. Poem- Girl From Medical Lake

2011-4. Old Man Dancing

2011-5. May- Misty and Alex Visit

2011-6. August- Darlene and Sean's Visit

2011-7. Alex 16-18 & Pics

2012- March- Carnival Splendor Mexican Riviera with Family

2013- Wedding

2014- Christmas Poem

2014- First Gay Cruise

2014- September Road Trip to San Diego

2015- Seasonal Affective Blues

2015- Second Gay Cruise

2015- War on Christmas poem

2015-"Badlands" and Gay Bar Etiquette

2015-September 8. Political History

2016 Do Not Speak for Gay Males

2016- April- Palm Springs RV Adventure

4/4/2016- Not Going Along to Get Along

9/4/15- Liberals vs Conservatives

Earthquake! Click to read story.
1982-1993 Waller Street- Click to read story.
My Dad's Family- Click for story.
2015- 2nd Gay Cruise- Click for story.
Photos of Dad & His Family- Click for story.
2014- Road trip to San Diego- Click for story.
Grandview- Click for story
Me in 3rd grade- Click for story.
Women in Oils- Click for story
Summer of Love- Click to read story.
2005- Darlene Visits for Gay Pride- Click to read story.
Cockettes & Angels of Light- Click for story
Amber- Click to read story.
1957-1958 1st Grade- Click to read story.
4th Grade- Click for story.
Gay Disco 70's- Click for story
1958-1959- 3rd Grade- Click to read story.
Me in my 20's in 1970's- Click for story.
The Psychedelic Experience- Click to read story.
Where I was born- Click for story.
1974- First Trip to Europe- Click to read story.
My Mother- Click for more photos.
Second Gay Cruise- Click for story.
5th Grade in Abilene Tx- Click for story
Escondido 1960's- Click for story
Palouse- Click for story
1973 "You have to be hurt..." Click to read the story.
Darlene Marries Chuck- Click for story.
1967- Summer of Love- Click to read story.
2001 Trip to Cancun- Click to read story.
1970's Promiscuity- Click for story.
1973- Psych Tech Program- Click for story.
2005 Darlene Visit for Gay Pride- Click for story.
Black Men in Oils- Click to read story
1974- On Larkin Street- Click for story.
2001 Trip to Cancun- Click to read story.
Click to read "Introduction."
Beatle haircut- Click for story.
Me in first grade- Click for story.
Forbidden Dreams of Love- Click for story.
2015- 2nd Gay Cruise- Click to read story.
1964- Luv Please- Click for story.