The Greater Portland Area Chapter is proud to announce that even after a morning of rain, people came out to support and remember those who had lost loved ones to homicide. The rain stopped just before the “September 25th Day of Remembrance for Homicide Victims” started. The sun came out as well. The warmth from the sun helped to warm our hearts and lift our spirits.
We also had a special announcement for this “2015 Day of Remembrance”. As a chapter, we dedicated this special event to honor Irene James, our chapter secretary. Irene has been a member for twenty-eight years. She has helped so many on her own journey through the aftermath of homicide and has also facilitated at meetings when we needed help. Irene gave of her time, support and helped financially through all of these years. She also has served on our POMC Board for nearly as many years as she has been a member. She spent nearly 100 days in court for the continued trials for the murder of her beloved daughter, Maureen Hodges. Currently, Ms. James has been fighting a long illness, cancer, and is now receiving hospice care. We continue to support Irene and admire her continued bravery on her latest challenge. Cards may be sent to her through our POMC mailing address (14427 S. Forsythe Road, Oregon City, OR 97045).
POMC is also thankful for the outstanding help from the office workers and staff at Mountain View Cemetery. Under their foreman, Jon Waverly, they did an outstanding job of having the area shinning and looking “picture perfect”. Crew members for the cemetery were: Steve Little, Mark Anderson, Garvon Bruhn, Judd Mesaris, Austin VanNette and office staff, Jinny King and Cathy Mitchel. We are also thankful to BCT, Sherrie’s Restaurant, Pioneer Rental, COSTCO, Starbucks, Meg Garvin and her staff (Rebecca Khalil, Goldann Salazar and Julie Landrum), Oregon City Police Department Honor Guards Sgt. Justin Young and Sgt. Mathew Paschall, and Annie-Marie Woods for helping make it a day to honor those whose lives have been so cruelly taken away. Each of these businesses and individuals went above and beyond to help make our day special. Meg Garvin also was an exceptional key note speaker and showed sensitive to our plight. Members who helped as well were: Eleanore Baccellieri, Delores and Lee Cook, Rose Minor, Lori and Rick Williams, Barbara Norris, Gayle, Moffitt, Mary and Bob Elledge, Reece Elledge, Pat Kuiper, Lesia Kennedy, and Allen Tremain.
We are also excited that we are getting closer to building our additional Memorial Wall behind the memorial already built. The memorial has proved its importance to the many members who visit it daily. We are the only memorial is the Northwest that honors victims of homicide. We are so proud of the city of Oregon City to allow us to build our memorial in such a historic cemetery that is so well kept. Our Memorial turned out to be just what we hoped it would be. It is a place of solace and a place to know that we are not alone. It comforts our weary.
Most important, our memorial gives us a place to reflect on the love we shared. It lets us know that our loved ones will not be forgotten. Their names are written on stone so that they will always be remembered. Having our loved ones names engraved on our wall also lets others know what homicide leaves behind. They will know the importance of good law enforcement and laws that protect others from the same fate. It is imperative that our society is protected from those who will kill or harm others.
It is also important for all of us to see that those who are protecting us have the tools to do it and laws that enforce “protection of society”. Another tool to protect society is to have laws and the means to protect partners and children from domestic abuse. Domestic abuse is one of the many issues that we work on as well. Sadly to say, it is the cause of many of our loved ones’ deaths. All of us need to work together to help protect those who are vulnerable or unable to protect themselves.
One of the hardest things a co-victim of homicide can hear is that the murderer of their loved one has been released and then murders again. The punishment needs to fit the crime. Having justice for their loved one is an important part for those left behind after a homicide. If there is no justice, their loved ones’ life is devalued.
It is also agonizing when murderers are released early from prison and even worse if the murderer is never tried or found.
A special thank you to those who stayed after and visited with one another. You sharing and caring is what makes this special day have more meaning. This might be the only opportunity for many of our members to share their loss with someone else who also is a co-victim or works with co-victims of homicide.
our loved ones deserve to be remembered. Their lives were so cruelly taken away. They names are now forever engraved in stone. We hope that everyone will learn the horror of homicide. All of us working together can make a difference.
Please know that none of our work could be done without all of your support and the support of all of those who walk and work beside us.
All my love and appreciation, Mary Elledge
Monday, December 7th, will be the evening we celebrate together a special holiday meeting in memory of our loved ones. We will have a showing of pictures of our loved ones on a screen, music, and refreshments afterwards. Pat Schwiebert decorates her home beautifully and each family will be given an ornament in memory of their loved one.
If you would like to have your loved ones’ picture shown please e-mail or mail it to Pat Schwiebert. If we already have a picture from past celebrations, we will be using those. It will be a meaningful time to share.
Pat can be reached at: Pat Schwiebert, 2116 N. E. 18th, Portland. OR 97212 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send your pictures as soon as you can.
Months ago, we wrote a story about the murder of a beautiful sixteen year old girl named Annie Malinchak McCann. Annie was murdered in Baltimore on 11/2/2008 It has been nearly seven years since her murder. Annie parents, Dan and Mary Jane McCann have been working since her death to find the murderer or the people responsible for the death of their beloved daughter, Annie. It has not been easy as so many of our members know. The McCanns have spent the last seven years looking for answers. The only thing that they still know is that the people responsible are not being investigated. Those in charge are not answering their questions. Since they are members of our chapter, we hope that those of you who can will send an e-mail, fax, or letter to officials so that we can get them to activate the case. The person or persons who murdered Annie have gotten away with it. They will probably kill again. This plays on the McCann’s minds as well. What we have found over the years is that pressure from the public can get police departments and other organizations involved.
An excerpt from the article Mary Jane and Dan wrote that you will have a link to is as follows:
“Annie died under the most sinister of circumstances. She was seen by two extraordinarily reliable eyewitnesses as lively, animated, and unbruised at a pastry shop in Baltimore’s Little Italy. A few short hours later, a few blocks away, she was found soaking wet, without shoes, with blunt force trauma to both sides of her forehead, with a vicious bruise on her backside and bloody bra, poisoned with massively lethal amount of lidocaine in her engorged stomach, stuffed behind a dumpster by thugs, who if they didn’t kill her themselves, were likely paid to dump her.
The best objective guess on how Annie died? It tracks pretty closely to FBI Deputy Assistant and Director Campbell’s testimony to Congress. She was lured under false pretenses from her sheltered suburban home by human traffickers, and murdered with a lethal dose of lidocaine, probably in an alcoholic drink, when she resisted the unfolding plan. That is informed by speculation, bases on the facts we’ve learned; in honesty and accuracy, it is light-years away beyond the impossible theory, that Annie killed herself.
What’s really needed is a vigorous and open-mined police investigation. That’s all we’ve ever asked for. It’s never been done.”
Please read the entire account on your e-mail. Also, it is important If you would please write your opinion or comment to one or send the same comment to all of the following:
On behalf of this wonderful family, I hope that many of our readers will look at the article and respond. The link for the article is:
Dr. Harry Bonnell, a forensic pathologist and former POMC National Board Member, looked into the case and concluded that writing a police finding of death by Bactine is insupportable, as is a conclusion of suicide. The McCanns were told that Annie could have committed suicide. You will find this information in the report the McCanns have in their article they wrote about Annie’s death.
Please let others know about the McCann’s article. We hope to generate letter writing and possible media interest. Helping each other is what POMC is all about. Please help support this family. Annie deserves justice.
The Greater Portland Area Chapter will be offering hope and support to the families and friends of the nine people who were murdered at Umpqua Community College in Roseberg, Oregon. We will be contacting the college to offer our experience, understanding, and support to help ease the terrible loss they and the community are facing. We will also let them know that we would be honored to add their love ones’ names to our new memorial wall. They will be part of our Oregon/Washington family.
We also know that knowing others truly understand can make a difference. We will keep all of our members up dated and if any members want to help please let us know. There is also a bonus in helping others. It makes our loss lighter as well because we are thinking of others. What we have learned is not wasted. It can be used to do good for those who are in so much turmoil.
It is an honor to share thoughts and stories from members. I never stop learning and I hope others will share with us as well. I would like to thank Linda Blake and Yvonne David for their articles:
From Linda Blake: Mary, I’d be happy to have this in the newsletter. Anything that helps. One thing I thought of is “Through Field Tapping”, which you had in a newsletter (EMDR, eye movement). I have 2 websites I like. Magnus Tapping (for depression) and Dr. Ng. who does a power routine. Both are similar and the light finger tapping plus the eye movement STOPPED the brain Chatter. I was able to focus and read novels again, after almost 9 years of inability to concentrate. Please tell people to NEVER give up hope to get better. It’s been a long journey, and certainly not an easy one. However, today I can even talk about Melody without crying. It DOES get better.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6133V2EcVIY This is Magnus, and excellent! Note that it can only help, as there are no negative aspects. The process accesses right and left brain. Clearing the obsessive or negative thoughts and feelings. Freedom!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkU1uY75U2Q Dr. Ng does a slightly different sequence and she is equally good.
From Yvonne David: I have a counselor that explained to me 3 waves we can be on during the time of grieving, “a high wave”, “a low wave” and “a sneaker”.
A “high wave” is when you are having a bad day. You cry, you are depressed, just can’t function. This wave can control you. It has to gradually come down to a low wave and roll onto the shore. This “high wave” can beat us as it does to a ship being tossed back and forth. In Mark 4:36-39 a storm arose and the disciples were afraid. They cried out to Jesus to save them for they thought they would perish. Jesus rebuked the wind and said unto the sea. “Peace be still”. The wind ceased and there was great calm. This is what we need to do when a “high wave” comes upon us. Ask God to still our wave.
A “low wave” is when you are having a good day. You are happy and thing are going smooth. But then WHAM—a “sneaker wave” hits you! A memory of some kind pops up unexpectedly and triggers the grieving: a date, birthday, phone call, a location you pass by etc… A “sneaker wave” can knock us off our feet. We have to get up and continue going forward. Get on that calm peaceful wave. We all want to be on the “calm wave”, but there will be days when a “sneaker” or a “high wave” will hit us.
I have shared these 3 different waves to my friends, (real simple like) so that they may help me. I can call on them when a wave hits me. Our friends always ask us, “How are you doing, or how are you today?” It is such an open question. How do you answer them? Well since they know about the waves, they can now ask, “How are your waves this week or what wave are you on today?” I encourage you to share with your friends about these waves and have peace throughout your day.
Funding for our new POMC Oregon/Washington Wall officially began this January, 2015. Members and friends of our chapter have been generous with donations and we are so thankful. Many of our new members are waiting for their loved ones names to be put on our new wall. We are listing new names that will be engraved when the wall is completed. We ask that members will call us, e-mail, or mail the information if you do not see your loved ones name on the list. The phone number is 503-656-8039, the e-mail is: email@example.com or POMC, 14427 S. Forsythe Road.
We are designing the wall now and hoping to build a wall that will accommodate more names than the existing wall. We want to list all of our loved ones
If any of our members work at a company or know of anyone who would like to make a donation please let us know or it is fine for you to ask for a donation yourself. We are a non-profit organization. Donations are tax deductible. Please use the phone contact numbers from the first paragraph of this article. Thank you so much for your support.
Carol Lynne Keightley
Craig C. Moritz Jr.
David G. Swapp Jr.
Dean A. Kuntz
Douglas Oliver Benton
Glen Edward Drysdale
Jayme Sue Austin
Jessica Lynn Clark
Julio Cesar Marquev
Kathleen Lois Bauman
Marcos J. Castillo
Nicolette Naomi Elias
Paul W. Miller
Randall Leo Gettman
Rebekah “Becky” Selegue Johnson
William Ronald Hatch III
(Please contact us if your loved one’s name does not appear on this paper and you would like to have it added. A form will be added to our newsletter each month to be used for adding names for the wall when it is completed. Please check the spelling of your loved one’s name and let us know if it is wrong. You can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org, call 505-656-8039, or mail us at POMC, 14427 S. Forsythe Rd., Oregon City, OR 97045.)
J. H. & Z.A. COOLEY
SONIA M. D.
The Greater Portland Chapter is proud to announce that Beth Greear has created a facebook support group for POMC members. To reach it use: www.facebook.com/groups/POMC.Portlalnd.Vancouver/ Beth said that there are several “admins” of the page so she is sure it will be very beneficial to anyone who would like to use it.
We cannot thank her enough for the chance to have even more support for our members. Beth is an outstanding person who is always there to reach out to help others. She even brought a delicious dessert for our December holiday meeting. We will be writing more on this next month and giving the names of other members who are helping with this project.
There could not be a better time to share the story of beautiful Annie McCann. Annie is the daughter of Mary Jane and Dan McCann. You will also find a letter in this newsletter that was written to State Attorney Marilyn Mosby about getting help for the McCann family.
Mary Jane and Dan have written an article so that you can read the entire account, “The Color of Puke”, on line. It is a compelling story that we hope you will read:
What do parents do when their child’s apparent murder goes unexplored? That’s what POMC members Mary Jane and Dan McCann are struggling with. They’ve written of their cruel ordeal. Here is an excerpt:
“Annie died under the most sinister of circumstances. She was seen by two extraordinarily reliable eyewitnesses as lively, animated, and unbruised at a pastry shop in Baltimore’s Little Italy. A few short hours later, a few blocks away, she was found soaking wet, without shoes , with blunt force trauma to both sides of her forehead, with a vicious bruise on her backside and a bloody bra, poisoned with a massively lethal amount of lidocaine in her engorged stomach, stuffed behind a dumpster by thugs, who If they didn’t kill her themselves, were likely paid to dump her.
The best objective guess on how Annie died? It tracks pretty closely to FBI Deputy Assistant and Director Campbell’s testimony to Congress. She was lured under false pretenses from her sheltered suburban home by human traffickers, and murdered with a lethal dose of lidocaine, probably in an alcoholic drink, when she resisted the unfolding plan. That is informed by speculation, based on the facts we’ve learned; in honesty and accuracy, it is light-years beyond the impossible theory, that Annie killed herself.
What’s really needed is a vigorous and open-mined police investigation. That’s all we’ve ever asked for. It’s never been done.”
You can read the entire account, “The Color of Puke” online.
During this year’s commemoration of National Crime Victims’ Week, can we engage our POMC community to help the McCanns gain justice for their daughter?
Shelley Dawn Elkins, born on May 31, 1968, was a beautiful twenty year old woman who had loving parents, Nina and Don Elkins, and a devoted loving sister, Sharon Christensen. Shelley was engaged and was living in own home with her fiancé when she was murdered on May 31, 1989.
Dail Ryan Yates waited for her fiancé, his cousin, to go to work early in the morning when he decided to murder Shelley. He strangled her. He showed no remorse. In fact, six months earlier he shot and killed a man in Estacada, Oregon. He was charged with the man’s murder and kept in jail until his trial. Unfortunately, he was found not guilty. He had claimed self-defense. It was less than a month later, that he murdered Shelley. For a family, it is unbearable to think that if justice had been handed out their daughter might not have been murdered.
After the murder of Shelley, Yates was found guilty and given life with the minimum of 25 years. On February 18, 2014, he was given a parole exit hearing. He had served his twenty-five years.
Shelley’s sister, Sharon, spent hours contacting people to write letters against Dail’s release and working with Victims Specialist Attorney Rosemary Brewer to get information and evidence that Dail Yates was a risk to society if he were let out. Ms. Brewer is an excellent attorney who is well prepared to assist victims trying to keep a murderer behind bars when they are likely to commit a crime again. Again, Mr. Yates was not sorry he murdered Shelley.
The Parole Board listened to both sides and ruled that Dail Ryan Yates should serve four more years. Many letters against his release were mailed in and eleven people were there to support Shelley’s memory. Ms. Brewer proved he was a risk. Shelley’s sister Sharon spoke as well.
As a chapter, we are proud of the Elkins family and all of those who helped keep a murderer in prison longer to protect society. We also offer the Elkins’ family our deepest sympathy and support. Your daughter Shelley would be proud. Your actions are protecting society. Shelley is and will always be remembered. We would also like to thank Rosemary Brewer for an excellent job as well as the Board of Parole and Debbie Wojciechowski, Victim Specialist . Debbie is excellent in helping co-victims of homicide go through the painful experience of revisiting the murder of their loved one.
The murder of a loved one is the most horrific thing a person can experience. The only thing that can make it worse is a substandard initial investigation or not seeing justice in your case. Timely collection of evidence followed by an arrest and conviction would provide a degree of comfort, but what happens to co-victims when a thorough investigation is not done, and there is no arrest? Many of the victims' friends and acquaintances will gradually let go of their grief over time, but the closest of friends and family will remain in a state of sorrow, haunted by the injustice of investigators that may not have conformed to rules or standard operating procedures during their initial investigation. Not only is there no relief, but the agony of the event changes their lives forever, and becomes part of their very being. Co-victims' everyday battle becomes their effort to get a thorough investigation.
Helplessness is a gut-wrenching emotion which plagues co-victims who are not allowed to assist with the investigation and are longing for justice. We don't want to let our loved one down; we are compelled to fight for justice no matter how long it takes. As the process drags on, frustration grows. Many times, due to confidentiality, important conversations between co-victims and law enforcement are avoided, and this lack of communication can cause co-victims to feel neglected and disrespected, which often manifests itself in frustration, anger, and a loss of confidence in the investigators. Regular contact and truthfulness are two of the most important things survivors need from law enforcement. We need investigators to focus on routine communication of as much information as possible with sensitivity and without being misleading. Survivors’ perception that information is not being shared with them can result in them feeling they have been secondarily victimized. As the years pass, co-victims start wondering if their unsolved homicide could be reviewed by a fresh set of eyes, and they often look into getting their case to a cold case unit, only to find out that some jurisdictions don't even have a cold case unit. If there is a cold case unit in their jurisdiction, cases are evaluated and chosen according to a set of criteria. Co-victims whose cases seem to be continuously passed over for review become dismayed and even angry toward law enforcement. Anger can mobilize psychological resources for corrective action, but uncontrolled anger can negatively affect personal or social well-being.
Co-victims who put forth the effort to examine and understand the cold case process and various factors which must be dealt with during cold case investigations are able to put the process into perspective. They must understand that cold cases are among the most difficult and frustrating cases for both co-victims and law enforcement, and not every case is chosen to be investigated. It helps to review the following criteria checklist used by the National Sheriff’s Association, Justice Solutions and POMC:
Complete an application for cold case review. This application includes detailed information regarding agency reports, victimology, suspects/persons of interest, timeline, coroner, lab reports, investigation documents, weapon descriptions and media releases.
Co-victims should also be aware that closing rates can be more successful if investigators work only one or two cases at a time. At this point, if we find out that our case doesn’t qualify for review by a cold case unit, our only hope is that a thorough re-investigation will be done by homicide investigators.
If you have comments or questions about this article, please email: email@example.com or call Pat Kuiper at 702-809-8654 to get your loved ones' name listed in our newsletter. Feel free to contact Pat if you would like to share your story.
Lucy Eilertson (1998)
Diana Moffitt (1987)
Donald James Brown (2007)
Kimberly Larson Reames (1983)
William (Bill) Mark Stratton (2005)
The Greater Portland Chapter is so proud of our member, Amanda Harris, for launching her official site for siblings. Amanda is offering the Website: www.unitingsiblings.com so that sibling co-victims of homicide have a place to go where they will be understood and supported. This site will include video, chat, and telephone conference via a secure and private interface. Amanda is paying for the expenses and will be delighted to be another support for sibling co-victims. Amanda can also be reached at: Amanda@unitingsiblings.com or 623-866-3189.
Amanda Harris is now ready to start her web site for siblings. The Portland Chapter is excited about the support and understanding this new group will be for the many often overlooked survivors.
Please find, enclosed, $10.00 for my annual subscription (three issues) for the Survivors Newsletter.
(Please consider adding an extra subscription fee to help defray the cost for someone who cannot afford it.)
CITY, STATE, ZIP____________________________________________________________________
MAIL TO: POMC, INC. ENCLOSED IS MY: CHECK _________________
100 E. EIGHTH STREET, B-41 MONEY ORDER__________
CINCINATTI, OH 54202
Download form here
PRINTED NAME OF LOVED ONE_________________________________________ (This will be engraved on the wall)
LOVED ONE’S BIRTHDATE____________________________ DEATH DATE____________________________
MEMBER/FRIEND’S NAME AND ADDRESS ____________________________________________________________
MEMBER/FRIEND’S PHONE NUMBER_____________________________ Do you want a Newsletter? Yes No
SIGNATURE FOR PERMISSION TO
ENGRAVE NAME AND SPELLING APPROVAL_________________________________________________________
Please submit one form for each loved one. Please make efforts with other family members/friends to ensure multiple requests are not received for the same name. When completed, please mail, fax, or e-mail to the following places: POMC, Mary Elledge, 14427 S. Forsythe Road, Oregon City, OR 97045 or fax 503-656-4420, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions, please call 503-656-8039.
Download form here
Please Complete and Return to Memorial Garden,
POMC 14427 S. Forsythe Rd Oregon City, OR 97045
100% of Contributions are Tax Deductible
Name:____________________________________________ phone: __________________________
Gift in Memory of: __________________________________________________________
Anonymous gift (will not be recognized at the Memorial Garden or in published materials)
Method of Payment:
Credit Card #_________________________________________Exp Date:___________
Name on Card _________________________________________________________________
Pledged Payment (to be completed by December 31, 2014)
Please add notes on payment timing _________________________________________
Thank you for helping to create the Oregon-Washington Public Memorial Garden. Your generosity will never be forgotten.
Download form here
Tacoma Violent Crime Victim Services Welcomes Homicide Survivors
Peer Support Group Meeting
If someone you love has been the victim of a homicide, we invite you to attend our monthly support group meeting. You will find acceptance, compassion and support.
Place: United Way Building
3rd FLOOR CONFERENCE ROOM
Date: 3rd Wednesday of Each Month!
Time: 7:30PM – 10:00PM
The United Way Building is located in Tacoma, at 1501 Pacific Avenue. This is the same building that the VCVS office is located in. It is next to Union Station on the north side. As you pass Union Station you will see the United Way Building. Parking is on the south side of the building. Please park your vehicle in an open space and enter the building’s front entrance and take the elevator to the third floor. The conference room is Suite 312. Please call Lew Cox for more information (253) 383-5254.
POMC'S Court Watch Program is designed to help families maneuver through the court system. Two of the most important aspects of Court Watch are the prevention of any re-victimization to family members, and the minimizing of the emotional pain of going through hearings and trials.
If you would like support from POMC during hearings and trials or want to offer assistance, call Pat Elmore at 503-312-5681 or Allen Tremain at 503-522- 0577.
Each month a number of newsletter are returned due to delivery problems. In addition to the initial postage, return postage is charged by the Postal Service. To minimize this expense, please write to the return address of this newsletter or contact Gayle if your address changes or you no longer wish to receive this publication.