Our brother John

Back on, Saturday  October 15, 2014 I received a call from our younger brother Michael.   I said Hello, and next thing I heard,”Kathy, Steve is dead.”   John was our brother’s legal name but we referred to him as Steve.  I yelled in the phone to my brother, and was in shock.   My daughter Tara came to get me – to take me to where John’s body was.  They (Coroner) had not picked him up from his apartment yet.  He had been dead for 3 days.  I had talked to Steve only a few days prior in fact, I am certain it was just before he died.   I made a habit of checking in with him as much as I could.

Back in July 1997, we lost our mother.  Steve was very close to Mom.  We were going through a lot at the time due to family drama.  I got a call from Steve at 5:30am, and he tried to end his life by turning on the gas in his little one room place in Inglewood.   I went out to get him, and brought him back to our place in Redondo Beach.  Steve said he wanted help – he was ready for help for his addiction..  Steve had been addicted to Methamphetamines for years.  After much checking, I got Steve into Clare Foundation in Santa Monica to detox.   From there he went out to Burbank through Victory Outreach to a Sober Living Home.  He did well.  He really did good and even turned his life over to Christ.  He was baptized at Shepherd Church in Porter Ranch.  Georgian Blair, a friend of the family and I attended the services.  Very proud of him.

Time flew by and Steve met Gilda.  They would end up getting married and I was so happy for them.  This was Steve’s first marriage.  THey met at a dance for people who were in recovery.  Steve ended up hurt on the job – a job he loved.   I am very sure that Steve did not tell the doctors he was a recovering addict.  He got addicted to Vicodin.  He relapsed.

Street addicts can get addicted to opioids in the wink of an eye.  They often  DO NOT tell the physicians they have had prior problems.   Are physicians mind readers?  No.   Was it my brothers responsibility to tell these doctors about his addiction to Meth at one time?  YES.  I call it personal responsibility.   Steve kept a lot from me because he knew I would be angry.    In the end- Steve’s kidney’s failed him and he died.  I believe his years of abuse caught up to him sadly.   Our brother Mike and his wife failed Steve in my very humble opinion.   Steve was living with them in their trailer parked outside the family home but Mike’s wife kicked him out.   They were SUPPOSE to take care of our brother according to a WILL that they both had our mother draw up.  How could they NOT know his kidney’s were failing him?   They promised our mother they would care for him as they always did.  But did they?  Who did Steve call when he tried to commit suicide?   It wasn’t Mike and Mary –  This was the family drama I was speaking about at the beginning of this.   Family drama that hurt my sisters – Steve and I.

I will never forgive Mike nor Mary for what they put us through.  I hold Mary the most responsible because Mike would never have let Steve down had he not been married to Mary.  As it is, Mary caused a lot of friction in the family by getting into the Family business.  Mike was docile – and just would never have caused the problems we underwent.  Wasn’t in his character.   Could he have stopped his wife though?  No.  She was/is a bully.

I wrote out an obituary for Steve.  I told Mike and Mary that Tom and I would pay for it.  She wrote her own out and submitted it to the Daily Breeze.    I know the truth as do Steve’s friends.  Steve hated Mary and knew she was not a good person.   She could not wait to get her hands on Steve’s truck .  I asked for Steve’s watch and never got it.  They tossed most everything out of his.  He was like trash to them especially Mary.   Steve knew he could come to me and I would not let him down.  I knew he had a terrible drug problem but you do not turn the other way when they are ready to RECEIVE help.

Mike did pay for Steve’s cremation but he left the ashes at the Mortuary (Pacific Crest) and THANK GOD I had called them because Mary and Mike stated Steve had NO OTHER SIBLINGS.  I said “WHAT?”  I gave them our names, the three of us girls.   I went down to get the ashes after a few months they had been left there.  I have them with me today!.  Do evil people exist in this world?  YES.  Do they hide behind that smile and charm?  Oh yes they do as our family discovered about Mary.  We knew Mary had issues by the way she treated her own siblings.   I want NOTHING to do with her but I miss my brother Mike.  He was manipulated as was our mother.  Terrible to do this to a family.