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(The last half is the serious part... and the reason we needed to hide). The first part is about local foolishness that blew our cover and killed some more people!
This page was continued from another page about Hayes County located elsewhere It has no bearing on the case against the drug cartel... other than the similarity to the deaths of innocent people caused by the ignorance of others!
When your life is almost over, and your good days are all behind you... Some will sit in a "beer joint" and make fun of others. But a few will sit on a space heater with their depends in a broken down camper hidden out in the trees! (After Randal did that for a few months he told me and that old camera on the dash more information than even Heidi could help me get out of him)! Before it was over we had leads to many others who had done the same as he had while working for this gang. We stopped looking after leads to another dozen or so guys who had been taking young girls for years by then! We also later found some of those girls... or maybe I should say we found out what happened to many of them. (These pages and that information will make you sick if you are normal. I will stop at that... Such wickedness is addressed enough in the other pages. You may want to see a few of them, but only if you have a stomach for such things). It is possible the "torture camper" played a major part in getting more information out of him. But I think being without any drugs AND Heidi was actually what finally worked. Life turned sour for many more from that point on too. And it got more serious for all those involved on my side as well.
Five years later... as I now "waste away" in the same camper, I have more time to "rewind" my past life! I often wonder if I had actually had a few more true friends other than people like Tracy down in Hayes Center "way back then" maybe I could have prevented the sickness and death of many others! I wonder if those who remain sick and still dying in this area now... could in some way be related to all of those "down there" that I might still be to blame for from an earlier time in my life.
Although when you are young you do not "think things out" long enough at times, you just try working harder or longer hours to solve problems. You might go at it seven days a week and figure that will surely solve most issues. Actually that did not solve anything, but there was no time left to worry about it. (In the early eighties I was already filling fire extinguishers , driving the school bus, and doing lawn care in the evenings. I was also on the fire department, part of an ambulance team, and delivered meals on wheels). More jobs might have worked for some, but it could not help me! I did not even have enough time left to help raise our kids. (Part of my problem may have been a rich and cocky family, or maybe foolish Catholic beliefs causing too many children)? OK then... can we blame it on that "Agent Orange" chemical... I do not think so! You be the judge, here is what really happened.
I had been working in this county since the beginning without a raise, and my fourth child had now reached that age to not only talk... but to put words together correctly. One Sunday evening her first complete sentence to me was a question about why we did not buy enough food for her! I already worked four 10 hour days a week in one county and three days a week in this county for less pay... But I could no longer afford that drive, the payment on the old house I bought, or even enough to provide food for my family. I now attended a Commissioner meeting and gave them a good pitch for more pay. I was awarded for my efforts and later returned to find the minutes of that meeting had been "adjusted" and no raise was mentioned. (McNutt had a daughter working in the courthouse, that adjustment was easy for him to make). Being a part time worker I had very few who really cared what happened to me or my family. I got along much better with farmers and ranchers who did not like the way the commissioners "ran the county" as they put it. (At times some would even tell me "deep dark" secrets about someone they considered an enemy was up to... Mostly due to the fact that it was their money being used to do it). I already knew these people were very powerful and if you did not like how things were going about all you could do was quit your job! I finally decided that was the only choice left.
Ten years before this happened my wife's family had "taken in" a wayward boy who had some family issues. I had worked with him several summers and he had learned a great deal about spraying chemicals to kill weeds. We were still good friends too. He had stopped by and was looking for a new job. Now that he was married he wanted to give his wife a fresh start. I took him down and showed him that house and he agreed to try out for my job... I now attended the next commissioner meeting and resigned. I introduced this young man and told them he should be tried out, or at least remain there to train whoever they decided on in the coming season! We were both quickly shown the door and I left town somewhat ashamed I had even involved him. (They did not care that I needed to find better pay elsewhere. The job was not a good one, but they did not like being reminded of that! These commissioners had never allowed the work to go on as it was delegated by the State Noxious Weed Board. Other than some work for State School Sections most of the spraying I did there was by direction of either Muriel or Hugo... and most work was done to clear brush and spray roadways for their friends. A long way from the normal "control" over bad weeds in problem areas)! They soon decided to teach me a lesson and "called the cops" on me over some "ditch weed" they thought remained in the old house from when I had sprayed a valley of "wild marijuana" the year before. (There is more to this part of the story and I explain that in detail on another page located elsewhere but the "just" of it was the local gossip now got aimed back at me and the Sullivan family name by Stan McKnight. He spoke of "dirty books" and "pot scattered around" along with thousands of dollars worth of stolen chemicals hidden there! (It was actually eight one gallon jugs of Round Up @ $72 per jug... a new chemical that was very expensive and one that many did not trust yet... Mostly due to a lack of understanding on HOW to use it. In fact I had never been allowed to order any of this chemical in the Hayes County inventory! That cop told the courthouse I must have stolen it elsewhere and he actually took it back to the other county I worked for! (Although I did not explain at that time about a secret that was not discovered by others until much later). I had actually found out this secret by accident right after I began working there years before. This chemical was what they called a nonselective "systemic" plant killer. Anything that was "green and growing" at the time you sprayed would die. This chemical was specially designed to appear as a nutrient until it reached the bottom of the root... Then killed the plant on the way back to the surface! If the plant was stressed or not taking in nutrients it would do very little other than make it sick... unless you gave the plant a nice shower of water first. I had already met the State Representative for what they call School Sections years ago in the other county and had attended one of his classes. He liked my attitude and had left me two jugs of this new chemical to try out on the bindweed they were fighting in Hayes County. That was in fact the first chemical I sprayed on the first weekend I worked. The field closest to town was sprayed as they watched me the same afternoon I trained for the job. (I slept in the truck and went out early the following morning... arriving at the far corner of the county not long after dawn. I sprayed the entire 100 gallons off and covered all "circles" with only a small amount to spare, giving the last shot far over the fence on one patch that extended into the neighboring land). I had not slept much due to a storm in the middle of the night but still spent the rest of Saturday and all of Sunday spraying for that "nut" commissioner. (The following weekend I had to spray for Hugo and by then I was beginning to regret even taking this job... although it did allow me to stop by the family farm both coming and going). In due time I finished their projects and did some quality weed control work as directed by the county agent or farmers with problem neighbors! Although I did my job for the most part, it was not always completed without a bit of complaining about the over use of a very wicked chemical the commissioners "bought by the barrel" mostly for their own personal use. This chemical was actually a "restricted use" product called 2-4-5 T (better known as agent orange). There was only one other product they ordered each year... It was also purchased by the 55 gallon barrel. The 6 lb butyl ester 2-4 D was to be mixed with diesel fuel (actually purchased with tax dollars for grading roads) and normally applied only to "commissioner roads" within this county. This had been going on long before I worked there and they had no intention of ever changing this plan regardless of my feelings on any issue. (Or for that matter, my health or any other "sprayer" who quit before I came along). Not that any of this matters... back to the subject I wanted to address on this page!
That first day of work I sprayed the acre of bindweed with the 100 gallon of water and one full gallon of Round Up as directed by the label. (A commissioner watched me do it and had also showed me how to get the water at the fire hall. The following morning I filled up early by flashlight and studied the map for the correct road connections to the "far away" school section. I made it without a wrong turn and found the rain had not made the field too muddy for the four wheel drive unit I was operating. The spray job was completed and I was back to the "nut" commissioner farm before he had finished his morning coffee... A good start and all was well. The following week I worked for Hugo and finally had some time to clean the stink of Butyl ester and diesel fuel off the truck before returning home that Sunday evening... It was at this time that I found the other "full" jug of Round Up I had forgotten to mix into that next load on the second day. (There was nothing I could do but wait for the following week and sneak in a return trip to correct the mistake). That following Friday was when the "unbelievable" thing happen... Upon entering my office in the courthouse I found my first "note" from a local taxpayer. (Normally this was always bad news from somebody stopping to pay taxes and complaining to anyone who would listen. Almost everybody knew somebody who was not adequately controlling some noxious weed and it was my job to do something about it. But this note was a "pat on the back- job well done" note from the land owner adjacent to the school section I had sprayed in the far corner of the county... The one where I had forgotten to add that gallon of RoundUp to my water! (I knew when I sprayed the first field I had "lost prime" while finishing up on a downhill slope... I knew I had about 10 gallon of spray left in the tank too, but I also knew they were watching me and I had covered all the ground anyway. So I did not try to waste time re-priming and returned to the shop to meet other county workers as they "wrapped up" their week. Several of them had been forced to "finish the year" when other "county weed sprayers" in the past had gotten sick of the nasty chemicals or the foolishness of the commissioners! It was at this time I made instant friends with a young man named Tracy... who is a very important part of the "rest of the story" and I will explain shortly. (But first... the miracle chemical, and what made me different than all other "weed sprayers" from the past). After reading the note I talked with the County Extension Agent (Mick was a "company man" and liked his job... but he was also interested in seeing "first-hand" results from new products for weed control). He took me out to that land and we looked for ourselves. Somewhere in his office there may still be the paperwork we did on that job, to include that rain shower the night before. Also the "10 days past full bloom stage of growth" and even a picture showing my wheel tracks surrounding those five perfect circles of dead bindweed... to include the one crossing over the fence into the field belonging to that neighbor. The only thing not correct was the one gallon RoundUp to 100 gallon water "labeled" mixture. (It was over ten years later that Monsanto tests proved this chemical would work at less than one tenth the "labeled" amount... if and only if the plant was washed clean, with active growth, and it was applied correctly without driving over it. I knew it right then! And after that every time I was able to spray RoundUp in either county I gained more product while still getting better kills by putting it on at the right time! (I had seven full jugs and part of another... By this time it had been over two years since I had started putting part of an ounce of my "extra chemical" into small spray bottles and giving it to farmers as good PR when I stopped in to visit). I think there are still a few of those "private label" bottles around both counties to this day. Although you can also buy it in stores now, labeled as RTU Round Up... (I even gave little old ladies a sandwich bag with q tips and a tiny medicine bottle of stronger stuff. For years afterward they knew you only had to touch one out of ten leaves on each "hard to kill" plant to kill the entire root! I had already given away over three gallons of this new miracle chemical to many people in both counties and had never ask for any payment). Although this made me popular among those who felt "left out" or mistreated by those in charge of the money spending, it also developed into a problem I was not old or wise enough to properly handle at the time. (Most of those I became closest to were what some would call the "angry birds" of the area. Many would not only "let go" about some neighbor who they did not like... they would often in time also tell a few other dark secrets of the county from the past). I am not sure why I became so involved in such foolishness against my bosses... maybe it was that stinking truck or the "Agent Orange" working against me? In time the friends and coworkers of those commissioners were aware of my alliance with the "belly-ache" bunch who too often voiced their opinions while paying their yearly taxes. It was not surprising to many in the courthouse when I "took the heat" when they got the chance.
But I did not "steal" anything and even the "dirty books" were not mine. (The "wayward boy" I took down there to replace me stayed in this house overnight the last time I went there... I stayed at the family farm that weekend and said my goodbyes). I do not know about how the "pot story" started, The county sheriff may have made that up after finding out about the tops I saved from the ditch weed I sprayed the year before. (They had been dried and delivered to our cousin who had the cancer. His attempt to make the "oil-rub" from it had been unsuccessful and that stuff was thought to have been long since discarded).
Looking back on it now... things are much more clear to me than they were at that time. (I now understand much better what is important to most people. And I think it is almost always connected to the word POWER, followed by MONEY... which is often what gives you more power). If you think about this for a while you soon realize most people who do not have any "old money" must get their money by taking it away from somebody else. (Unless you find gold, strike oil or get lucky)! Since I was young I did not think much of having "too much" money, my family had "struck oil" when I was ten and it had NOT changed them for the better! (I had in fact at times said I had enjoyed my "poor friends" much more than the others I got when we got rich). I was however, I must admit, still somewhat interested in power at times though. But I always attempted to earn it through conversation, one person at a time! (That was the main reason I was so good with the farmers in that weed control job. Most of them knew those noxious weeds would not be eliminated. Some also felt the nasty chemicals used to control them were not worth it either. Many just wanted someone who cared enough to listen to them talk about it for a while. I often talked with them even longer and heard why they were actually mad at some neighbor with bad weeds... along with other problems)! That is how the "miracle chemical" played into this program. Almost all of them had a very bad plant called bindweed in their garden. (It could "bind" around anything they tried to grow, both above and below the ground. Once it was an established plant the roots went many feet down into the ground and the vines grew unbelievably fast on top. If left alone it would form a perfect circle, killing even its own "seedlings" along with everything else from that point on). RoundUp could not only kill it. You did not have to "sterilize" the ground in the process. I cannot even count the number of times the "woman of the house" came out with a cool drink, as I sat with a farmer on his endgate! And I never missed the chance to give out a "Q tip baggy" along with a spray bottle for him. I did not tell them what this chemical was... I called it my "secret soap" and often used a bit of his spray bottle to wash my hands if she had brought us some cookies! They saw the bubbles it made (Roundup included a super "surfactant" to make it work better). They also noticed it did not smell bad and it washed my hands clean with very little water! I think in time I had more women using it in gardens before the men even tried it down in the hog lot. (This process took a few years, but before long these same "taxpayers" would ask for me when they went in to pay at the courthouse). Not once did they ever explain in detail why they wanted some more of my "secret" stuff. Although the use of that word may have been what actually caused my downfall.
One thing that must be understood about almost all powerful people. A secret is a dangerous thing with them. They might be ignorant, they might even be downright stupid. But once they are old enough to "keep a secret" at around age seven... they soon learn how to use that word to their advantage. Some will even use it to get more power! In politics it can be very dangerous, especially if the "secret" is told at the right time... like just before an election! (This really works on a local level, where the "grapevine gossip" can get out of hand). In county government there are really only two powerful groups of people... the ones who pay the money in, and the ones who control how the money is paid out. (It works better if very little of that money is paid in by those who live in towns! Such as the case in Hayes County, with only one town in the middle... called Hayes Center). You elect your three commissioners knowing full well all roads leading to his farm will soon be the best roads to use if you really need to get to town. You know better than cross them once they have been elected too. (You hope they do not get so powerful they remain in control forever either, but it happens! Then they may get an "easy going halfwit" elected and the "two out of three" vote will carry from that point on)! You also learn to NEVER try to keep a secret from the ones in charge! And especially you do not ever involve any secret with those paying the money that pays the bills. (These people cannot speak up for you either, they are spread out all over and do not spend much time in the beer joint). If somebody says something about drugs or dirty magazines they will quickly turn away and just let the bindweed grow!
Now that I have "cleared the muddy water" a bit? I want to get down to the real message... and warning! To all those being poisoned by another foolish "stunt" pulled by none other than this courthouse WAY back another 20 some years before I was framed, embarrassed, removed... or whatever!
If you search national records you will find a federal mandate declaring all "banned or restricted use" chemicals remaining in inventory of all counties in the State of Nebraska shall be inventoried, declared by volume, and placed in a "locked" controlled environment until such time that they would be inspected and/or removed by that newly reorganized EPA Government program... And this was not without cost to the counties involved either! The word in the Hayes County commissioners office was "government be damned" as Hugo had a better plan. He had a gully at the edge of one of his fields that had been giving him fits for years. He would need some serious dirt moving equipment to fill it in with dirt from that small hill nearby. The heavy equipment belonging to the State would do the job just fine! A crew of "flunkies" that included Buddy rounded up all the "restricted" barrels and other pails of DDT, Chlordane, and anything with worn off labels. The strychnine and arsenic for killing prairie dogs and coyotes was put in other empty barrels and everything went into the bottom of that gully. It all happened one sunny Saturday afternoon. The story had been repeated several times by an angry neighbor to the Moore family. A young boy named Tracy also sat watching his dad help fill that gully with others using the State Equipment they normally only operated on state highway right of ways after major rain damage. He and the angry neighbor both mentioned three pickups being used to unload the dangerous chemicals... mostly in large barrels! Once when I was spraying in Hugo's yard I spoke of it and he said that must remain our secret for now and there was plenty of time to deal with it later? I do not know why nobody ever did anything about it. Maybe there were other reasons. However, McNutt was the only one who had ever threatened me when He found out I knew about it. (He was the one with the most control over things when I was there. He was also the one with a bad attitude, I actually had more respect for Hugo than I ever did for the other two). I guess later on I just put this problem "out of mind" you might say! I tried blaming the bad headaches I got from spraying that 2 4 5 T... but they went away and I put that out of mind too. (Later in life, when my lungs began to fail me, I was once again reminded of those more foolish times).
I did not ever think about how long it would take before the barrels would rust through and those chemicals would reach water... I guess it depends on whether or not you are the one drinking that water! (Or if any in your family lived downstream from that area)? Once I began to deal with this new problem involving the drugs and the wicked people using our young girls for sex I noticed one thing right away! (If it did not personally affect them most people did not care enough to help in the matter. Some in fact were angry that I even spoke openly of such things because of the danger it involved. Life was just better if they were not made aware of such things. It would be better to keep this secret to myself)?
Even in my "old age" I remain confused about what secrets should be told to what people... But one thing I have figured out for sure. If you know something that is dangerous to others and do not do anything about it other than ignore the problem this becomes a sin on your soul! Pretending not to believe in evil or God or hell does not work either. Knowing about a wrong... and ignoring it, now makes you a part of this wrongdoing. Being young and ignorant might have been a good reason at the time. However, it is not an excuse to keep a dangerous secret from harming people, even if you do not actually know who those people are. My "RoundUp secret" was a foolish play for a bit of power or control over another. Although there was no harm intended and the effort was helpful in some ways... the way I went about doing it was wrong.
The day I resigned I tried to tell Hugo of my "other" secret and was interrupted by the "mouthy nut" before I could finish the sentence... He told me if I ever opened my mouth again they would call me crazy and say I was making everything up! Raymond and I were escorted out of the courthouse and I was not even allowed to get my book out of the desk! I never told anybody, not even Raymond, I was too embarrassed. But somebody must have thought I would talk, because things "went south" in a hurry for me after that. (Maybe I WAS crazy for not telling everyone about it then. And maybe that is why I have now watched an entire generation of our young people from my new home town go down the toilet because I did not save the people from other poison long ago). You tell me what you would have done other than run. I was too young to know what to do and I had four little children asking me for more food. (I actually did tell someone I thought I could trust years later. He was a County Agent in fact. He made some calls too. The answer he gave me sounded more crazy than anything you have read up to this point. He spoke of the outrageous cost of an EPA "superfund" cleanup and the total worth of Hayes County at that time. He also mentioned how few people were located in this area... it was all in the numbers you see! He said things did not add up and this "hot potato" would need to be put on the back burner for the time being. I later checked back while I was in Denver. I was told the paperwork was gone and he had already retired? I am now old enough to retire too... but don't plan on it!
You still think you can burn down another house to get rid of me? Do you like working for drug cartels or do you like having sex with young girls? Do you want to see what they look like after they are dumped in a ditch and strung out on meth? Do you know how many were later affected by your foolish rhetoric? Or do you even care?
Do you want to know the crime location of the chemical dump, or do you want to ignore that too?
Actually you can find lots of old pictures taken of this land in the fifties before that dirt was moved. I found them in your ASCS building on main street across from the Coop. You may also want to look at the bigger picture and pay close attention to what is downhill from that location! Follow the springs into the creek and on to the river. Also test the poison levels of all those people drinking that water in the shallow wells pulling out of those upper water tables moving south into the state of Kansas.
If you are curious how long it took for the barrels to rust out just study the difference in miscarriage numbers for towns like Palisade... then others downstream!
I am not real sure who started this, but I am pretty sure how it will end. I have no pictures of the missing or dead. But those who survived are not very pretty now!