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Ex Hawaii/Riverside Staff

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by pineapple, Jul 14, 2012.

  1. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    Hello. This is my first post. I was on staff at the Honolulu Mission and briefly at Riverside, CA, 1975-1981. I've been out of Scn since then.

    Recently I was reading an article in The Village Voice about a Scn mission in Israel defecting from the church. (I think there's a link on this site to the Voice's series about Scn.) The article said -- 2nd paragraph or so -- that this was "the first time in memory" an entire mission had defected. I knew this wasn't the case. Riverside did this, shortly after I got out I believe. This got me thinking about the time I spent there, and I started looking around the web for stuff about the Riverside Mission, and wound up here.

    In the "Reuniting with Old Friends" forum, there is a very long (32 pages) thread specifically about Riverside, and I spent hours reading it and other things it links to. I had a great time reading it. I read some of it more than once. I remember many of the people mentioned, and it's the first time I've seen most of those names in 30 years.

    Honolulu and Riverside had the same mission holder for a while -- Bent Corydon -- and there was some exchange of staff between the two. I went to Riverside twice -- I'm a little vague on exact dates, now, '76? '77? -- but my second and longer stay was about 4 months, the earlier one was shorter than that. That was some of the best time I had in Scn.

    In the thread about Riverside, the Hawaii sister mission was mentioned a few times, and someone asked if there were any Hawaii staff out there. No one spoke up. So finally I decided I would. This is the first time I've ever posted to any ex-Scn site, anywhere.
  2. Lone Star

    Lone Star Crusader

    It's turning into a full time job welcoming new people this week! A very good "problem" to have.

    Welcome aboard Pineapple! Look forward to your future posts...
  3. Ogsonofgroo

    Ogsonofgroo Crusader

    :welcome: Pineapple! Please hang around a bit and enjoy your stay!
    Hopefully you'll reconnect with some of your old mates in the process :cheers:

    Yup, quite an influx of newbies this past couple of weeks, its kind of encouraging seeing that some are doing more than just saying hi, and telling some new stories, and that most seem to have done just fine in their lives without CoS involvement.
    I like that there are people who are shaking out cobwebs and finding the puzzle pieces so long ago lost.

    A hearty cheers to all of ya!

  4. EP - Ethics Particle

    EP - Ethics Particle Gold Meritorious Patron

    :wave::welcome: Lahina on Halloween is as good as Mardi Gras! :thumbsup::happydance:
  5. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    I lived in Hawaii for 6 1/2 years, but never made it to Lahaina. (Honolulu is on Oahu, Lahaina is on Maui.)

    One year we shut down the Hono Mission from Xmas to New Year's. I think we must have been doing relatively well GI-wise at the time, and also a lot of our public were going home -- i.e. leaving the island -- for the holidays. Some of the staff took a trip to Maui. I could have gone, but opted not to. It was the execs who were going, and I didn't want to spend an unheard-of entire free week with them. Too much like being on post. Frank and Renee Walker (see the thread on Riverside Mission) were then our
    ED and Div 6.
  6. PirateAndBum

    PirateAndBum Gold Meritorious Patron

    Glad you found ESMB. Enjoy your stay!
  7. R6Basic

    R6Basic Patron Meritorious

    Welcome Pineapple!
  8. looker

    looker Patron Meritorious

    :welcome: Pineapple. Did you know Jeff Yumens? He opened a mission in Hawaii ran it for a few years then closed it down. I'm not sure which years.
  9. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    The guy who took over as ED at the Hono Mission just before I left (1981) was named Jeff. I have never remembered his last name. If it's the same guy, he didn't open the mission. I'd been on staff there for 6 years when he arrived, and the place was around long before I got there (1975). Before my time the mission belonged to a woman named Norma Maier (sp?). The Hawaii Org was then in what had once been Norma Maier's house, in Aina Haina, which is a Honolulu suburb. This is all what I was told -- Norma had died by that time.

    Jeff showed up after Bent Corydon lost the Mission and Frank Walker, who had been Hawaii ED, was comm ev'ed at the Hawaii Org. I'd been having severe reservations about staff for at least a year. When Jeff showed up, I figured it was time to make a break, before I got in the habit of taking orders from yet another ED. I'd been through several in my 6 years.

    So pretty much the first conversation I had with Jeff was telling him I wanted to route off staff. We talked about it a bit, but I guess he could see my mind was made up, and he didn't push too hard to keep me. Instead of putting me on a checksheet for routing off, he told me to go clay demo an overt. I think I sat and looked at the clay for a while, then said, "I can't do this." I went back to Jeff and said, "Look, I'm a Class IV auditor. How many times do you think I've clay-demo'ed an overt? I know what an overt is. I don't need to clay demo an overt. I want to route off staff."

    Jeff kept insisting I needed to do the demo, and I kept insisting I wasn't going to. The conversation was actually surprisingly civil, considering how those things usually went in Scn. There was no dramo, no yelling and screaming. We eventually just reached an impasse. I wasn't going to do the demo, and he wasn't going to do anything else until I did. So we had nothing more to talk about. I finally walked out and never went back.

    Jeff, I have to say, was a pretty nice guy, but I wished he'd put me on a standard checksheet to route off.

    At that point I think I thought I still wanted to be a Scngst but just couldn't do the staff thing anymore. I continued living in an apt on Makaloa St. a few blocks from the mission, which was at 1282 Kapiolani. All the other occupants were mission staff. Their attitude toward me cooled after I stopped going to the mission, obviously. The treatment I got ranged from very nice (from the oldest and farthest up-the-bridge person, who I think had seen this sort of thing many times before) to very nasty. The nasty treatment I got made me re-think my attitude toward Scn and Scngsts a bit.

    After a few months of this I left Honolulu and Scn. I corresponded with some people at the mission for a while. Again this ranged from very nice to very nasty. I think I had some idea for a while of paying off my freeloader's bill, just to be ethical about it and end the cycle, but eventually dropped that idea and all comm with Scn.

    I have a letter from another ex-Hono staff friend who visited the mission in 1984. He said the staff had dwindled down to maybe 4 people, plus Jeff. There were about 15 in my time. I visited Honolulu a few times in the early 90's. The building at 1282 Kapiolani had been torn down and I could find no trace of the mission at all.

    Thanks to all of you for welcoming me.
  10. R6Basic

    R6Basic Patron Meritorious

    So, did they try to serve you with a freeloader's debt because you didn't route out?
  11. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    Yeah, eventually got a freeloader bill, after I left Hawaii. (See my previous post.) For a while I thought about paying it, even if I wasn't going to continue with Scn, which is the way it was looking by then. Finally gave up on the idea. I figure all the 70-hour weeks I worked for virtually no money is payment enough.

    During my second stay in Riverside, they fed their staff 3 all-you-can-eat hot meals a day, and I got paid $55/wk. While that worked out to well under $1/hr, it was affluence compared to Honolulu. Most weeks there I got zip, nada. If I ever got $20 it would have been a huge big deal.
  12. Natalie

    Natalie Patron with Honors

    Aloha Pineapple! I was around when you were in Hawaii, but I was a kid then, having been born in 1970. My name then was Natalie Webster. My mom was married to Brian Takano at that time. Her name was Donna Takano then, and she may have been on staff at that time.

    I've been living in Minnesota for the last 19 years and left the cult 2.5 years ago, as did my whole family.
  13. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    The names Brian Takano and Donna Takano do sound familiar. I'm sure I don't remember them from the Hono Mission, but the Hawaii Org maybe. The org staff I knew less well, since I was mostly just there as a student. I did my Dn internship and my Levels 0-IV and IV internship at the org. Very nice place when it was out in Aina Haina, in what I was told was Norma Maier's old house. There were a couple buildings around a central courtyard, and a stream ran behind the property. In the evenings frogs used to come up from the stream into the courtyard and you had to be careful not to step on them. The org staff were very pleasant too, in my experience. I never had a problem with them.

    Do you remember the org when it was in that location? I know you were just a kid, but it's possible you might. They moved later -- in the late 70's, I guess -- to Waikiki. It was thought that the Aina Haina location was too out-of-the-way to attract lots of new public. I never liked the Waikiki spot as much, and I know some other people felt the same. It didn't have the "theta" feel of the old place, as we used to say.

    When I was in Hawaii in the early 90's the org had moved again, to a very unobtrusive location downtown on King St. I was long out of Scn by then, so I didn't go in to check out the inside. I see they're now at 1347 Kapiolani, not far from where the old mission used to be, at 1282 Kapiolani. I think the current location is just a suite in an office building. Sounds like they've dwindled down a lot, but I hear this has happened to Scn everywhere, contrary to what the C of S would like you to believe.

    Congrats on you and your family getting out. It must be very different having family in Scn, and if your mom was on staff in the 70's, I guess you grew up with it and had a very long period of involvement with it. I think that would make it harder to break away.

  14. Natalie

    Natalie Patron with Honors

    I spent a lot of time catching frogs in that stream behind the Aina Haina org.

    It was whe the org was in Waikiki that we met Mark David Chapman, the guy who killed John Lennon. He worked as security at a building right by the org. Being the typical unsupervised kids of staff that we were, we would chat him up and try to sell him pictures we drew. I think it was a year or so later he becamed infamous. By then we moved on to a neighboring tranny protstitute as a friend. Lovely enviornments for a 10 and 12 year old.:duh: Not many kids were running around that area at night.

    The Hawaii org has shrunk a ton since the Aina Haina days. There has been the same old same old staff for years. Good people, but wasting their lives.

    Growing up in Scn did make it harder to break away. I think mostly because the mind control is in place longer and you have more time to become numb to the most glaring outpoints. Every day I'm free from the cult, the more I see moments in my past for what they were, rather than how I once viewed them through my cult tinted glasses.

  15. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    "It was when the org was in Waikiki that we met Mark David Chapman, the guy who killed John Lennon. He worked as security at a building right by the org."

    When I was on staff at the Hono Mission, I worked nights as a security guard at an apt building on Ala Wai Blvd, by the canal. The building manager was a Scngst and ex-mission staff, which was how I got the job.

    Early one morning I was making my rounds in the building. The morning papers had just been delivered and I saw the headlines saying that Lennon had been shot. As I found out more of the story, I learned that Chapman had been a security guard right across the street from where I worked until not long before.

    After I left Hawaii and Scn, I used to tell my friends, "I used to work as a security guard in Hawaii across the street from where Mark David Chapman worked as a security guard." It sounds so bizarre that after years of telling it I was starting to wonder if maybe it didn't really happen, that maybe it was just something I'd made up.

    It's good to have you confirm the accuracy of my recollection on this.

  16. Scout

    Scout Patron

    I was there with Pineapple but I can't figure out who you are yet, but I am sure we know each other pretty well because the Honolulu staff was very small especially compared to Riverside. As a matter of fact my years in scn were the same as yours.

    I remember thinking we were connecting to something powerful when Bent and Mary and Frank and Rene came over. I especially appreciated Frank Walker (remember how he'd wipe his head head from back to front when I presented him another conundrum) and his smooth ways as he handled staff and the public.

    Hawaii was a wonderful place to learn Scn but it changed when Riverside came over. It was the first time I saw the mother church come in and dictate to our Mission. We thought Mission International had sent Bent and Mary over.

    I knew by 1980 my time was up on Staff and Scn. I had to been to Riverside a few times to absorb their methods. Yes the reg stories about Jeff Kovach and Hambone and John Ruane and others were true. How do I know? I was the Honolulu Reg trained in Riverside. Fortunately Frank didn't force me to operated like that, but I had to work Wog Jobs to be able to support myself and my wife (also on staff) with a daughter on the way. All this while holding down staff responsibilities. The good part of the wog jobs was I found the outside world entertaining and enjoyable. No downward spiral and I repaired the family connections I had severed when I entered Scn. But to do that I had to return to where I came from.

    I miss Hawaii quite a bit but I don't miss the long staff hours. More even than Hawaii I miss the staff I served with. They were interesting and lively as a group. Thank you for the chance to relive this just a little 32 years later.
  17. pineapple

    pineapple Silver Meritorious Patron

    I'm pretty sure I know who you are, bro. :yes:
    If you were a reg in Honolulu in the Riverside period that narrows it down a lot.

    We both went to Riverside a couple times but I don't think we were ever there concurrently.

    You got off staff before I did (smart).

    I believe we both lived in that same staff house up in Papakolea for a while. In fact it was you who got me to move in there, while I was still public.

    Did you use to play lacrosse? :wink2:
  18. ClearedSP

    ClearedSP Patron with Honors


    By the way, if anyone ever runs into Jordan Nagasako or Gail (Peterson) Nagasako in Wailuku, tell them the person who once bullbaited Jordan on "maki die dead" sends warm regards.
  19. Scout

    Scout Patron

    I did Pineapple. Did you play guitar?
  20. GreyWolf

    GreyWolf Gold Meritorious Patron

    Welcome. I like your avatar by the way.