Tuesday, September 2, 2008

September 1983 - The City Spins Around

My parents split up near the end of 7th grade. It had been coming for awhile, we could all feel it. And divorces in 1979 were getting to be quite popular so it's not like we were any more or less special than the next family.

Unfortunately, the next four years of my life were some of the worst I ever experienced. Or maybe I should say - the worst that those around me ever experienced.

I didn't know how to deal with the split up of my parents. I was the first born - the responsible one. But also the one who was to blame. Or so I was told (over and over again).

During 1982 and 1983, I attended five high schools. One of them twice. I was shipped from one parent to another - from one relative to another. No one knew what to do with me. I had closed up on the inside and I couldn't express what was going on internally. I was frozen from the inside out.

And then, one tragic, awful situation, unleashed the anger and sadness and betrayal that lived inside of me.




I didn't know the Osbornes. I don't even recall reading anything with Dan Osborne's name on it.

It was all over the news. The paper. The television. It was all anyone could talk about. Me, I didn't want to talk about it. I wanted people to stop talking about it. It was annoying. Wasn't there anything else to talk about?

And then one day, I saw a picture of her - Caroline Osborne - only for a few seconds. The news articles - the television reports - all of the details came flooding at me at once.

Caroline was 2.
Caroline was sexually assaulted.
Caroline was meant to die.
Caroline wandered around her home for two days - seeing her dead family and not understanding.

And after not being able to display emotions for what seemed like years, I broke down. I don't mean cried - I mean for four hours, my body shook and trembled like never before (and as I type this, the memories are right there - so close to the surface).

I was so angry.

At God. I hated him with every bit of life inside of me. He was cruel and mean and I would never forgive him for all of this bad stuff - my parents, me, Caroline Osborne, her family. He was no God of mine. I had been a hypocrite for so many years. Just pray. Just believe. Yeah. Right. And watch the evil world win because that's how it works. You get to be dumb and stupid and a believer while everyone else is winning.

At my mom. She ran away - she didn't defend us. She didn't protect me. She lied to me. Many times. I trusted her. She hijacked my trust and left me feeling like I had no one.

At my dad. He couldn't keep it together. He had to blame a 12 year old kid for his failures. He couldn't control his anger. He was a coward. He abandoned his family.

At my friends. They didn't understand me. They didn't want to see me for me - they only wanted to see me for what I had been before. Smart. Strong. The leader.

I needed someone. I had no one. In many ways, I felt like little Caroline Osborne...wandering around, battered, bruised, confused, but too naive to understand how the situation came to be. And all I wanted was for everything to be the way it was before it got all messed up. I wanted my life back. I wanted my family back. I wanted my neighborhood back. I wanted my friends back. I wanted some semblence of normalacy and happiness back.

Only, it was never going to happen. Nothing was reversible. I was 16 - and the world sucked in a way that made me not want to live. The pain just seemed to be endless. I wasn't sure how I was going to make it another day.

25 comments:

Colleen said...

Man oh man, did that killing rock my world too. It was just all around awful. Even now, I drive by that house and just...yikes. What those walls saw.

TheGreatStone.com said...

I symphathize with you about your childhood. Life must have been really tough.

I hope all is well now and you gone on to be a stronger & caring person.

If you ever have the time please visit my blog sometime:
http://TheGreatStone.com

Perhaps we can exchange links.

Have a great one!

Bobby G. said...

Looks like you succeeded with your life beyond your wildest dreams (and teenage apprehensions).

That speaks to the GOOD aspects your parents had to have given you, as well as your very own intestinal fortitude.

You might have gotten THAT end of the stick early on, but you are someone to be congratulated today (imho).
And you know I "call em as I see 'em".

Keep on keeping on!

B.G.

Andy said...

Divorce and finding a sense of place seemed to be a common theme if you grew up in the 80's.

What a horrifying story to read. I can't even begin to imagine such a cruel inhumane act.

I am curious - was the killer ever caught ?

What happened to Caroline ?

Anonymous said...

I just kind of stumbled on this blog when some research of one infamous indiana murder led me to stumble upon finding things about the Osborne murder. I was very interested because I grew up with Caroline Osborne. We are still acquainted to this day. I am happy to report that she is a happy well rounded lovely lady. Only as children have we ever talked about what happened to her family. She has virtually no memory of what happened. An 18 year old confessed to the attack, but hung himself in his cell a day later.

Anonymous said...

Hello all..

You cannot possibly think that Calvin Perry, the 18 yr old who was murdered in the Allen County Jail killed that family. As horrible as that was and still is, I'm sorry, but he didnt do it. Well, at least I dont think so. He didnt kill himself either. The jail cell for which he so called committed suicide wasnt and still isnt equipped for suicide. The rafters above are made of cement and wasnt hollowed out for anything to wrap around for the linen from the mattress for which he was murdered with to hang. The only way U can kill yourself in that cell is to tie it at the end of the bed, which is only apprx 4 feet from the floor, tie the rope around your neck and PULLLLL your entire body weight up with your arms and hold your body OFF THE GROUND until U die. Impossible. Totally and utterly impossible.Ridiculous even to suggest. Your bodys reaction and impulse would be to release. Nobody has that type of strength for that period time that it would take to die. I can say with 100% certainty he didnt kill himself. Now I cannot say with 100% certainty he didnt kill this poor family, the poor dog and that poor little girl but what I can say is, I highly doubt it. There are things that I am privy to that alot of people are not. Who I am & what I have isnt important. I have a plethora of information on this. So it isnt just common sense that leads me to beleive that an 18 yr old kid probably cannot go inside a home and wipe out an entire family alone, its other information. Its my beleif that Mr. Perry was the fall guy for it. Now I know there is going to be alot of people who are gonna comment and ran and rave about how wrong I am because they read "articles" that the newspapers wrote (like that stuff is written in stone and always fact-NOT!).I know people are gonna say "Well evidence was found at his house such as credit cards, checks and a weapon". "He knew the whole layout of their house". Stuff like that. Im NOT basing anything I am saying on "newspaper" articles and rumors. People tend to beleive what the majority beleives, its human nature. People tend to not wanna go against the grain. People tend to settle with tradition and traditonally its been accepted that Calvin Perry killed them. Oh, and before anyone suggests I must be black and work with the NAACP, you're wrong. I am not black. I always felt so bad for the entire Osborne family and still do. I have plenty of compassion and empathy for Caroline. I did then and still do. Its just absolutly awful. The worst horror. I cant imagine. If you ever read this Caroline, Im so sorry for your loss and what happened to you. I honestly mean that. Be safe and have a great life.

Anonymous said...

does anyone know the address on harrison this happened at....dont know if perry did it...trying to figure it out

Anonymous said...

I was looking up the Osborne family, due to an interest from hearing the story when I was in Fifth grade. We would discuss "Current Events" in class and read about the case. It stayed with me until this day, wondering what happened to the little girl. So glad to read that someone knew her and believes she is well-adjusted and happy.

Thank you for sharing the Osborne article and your personal experience.

Stefanie M. said...

My father and I was talking about the Osborne slayings last night and it brought back memories. I was like 7 or 8 at the time of the murders and even then I could only think to myself "Who would do such a thing?".. The world is full of heartless people and I feel bad that Caroline has had to live her life with out ever really getting to know her mom, dad, and big brother. I am currently in college for criminal justice and hope to one day be apart of the homicide team if not here in Fort Wayne, Indiana, then somewhere close in location. It sucks that your childhood was not great, and it should have been. All you can do is make sure your children (If you have any, or decide to have any) grow up in a healthy, loving environment. Give them something you never had... I hope your heart heals soon.

Stefanie M. said...

To anonymous looking for the address to where this happened.. im not too sure of the address but the picture of the house stays in my head. If you take Rudisill to harrison (Comming from broadway) you would make a right on harrison. The house is on the left side I believe 2 blocks up (give or take a block)... its a brick house that sits on a corner, its rather a nice house also... sorry i coulnt help with the actual address... but I can tell you this, once Calvin Perry was arrested and he confessed to the crime, and then "committed suicide" the murders and a big chunk of the crimes such as rape stopped around that neighborhood..

Anonymous said...

Untrue@ people thinking crimes stopped once he was arrested or deceased. Go back to the research drawing board. Certain crimes werent highlighted to the public or even "linked" as to not wanting the public to panic. This created more ease within the community by doing this. But no, crimes still occured some of which were actually "linked" but again, not highlighted publicly. And no, Im not just speaking on the Sharon Lapp murder with Frank Hopkins either (dont get me started there and the connected between the two). Perhaps one day, I will dig out all my files and make mention of crimes (burlaries,rapes,homocides,robberies) that were taking place AFTER Calvin was deceased and in a few cases, when he was locked up. For personal reasons and safety im naturally reluctant to go into great great detail about this. Its very "politically sensitive" to certain parties and well, I know first hand that danger looms. Take Care (and yes, I an "anon" who commented in 2009 about this.

Anonymous said...

Its 4035 S. Harrison Blvd

also if you.....nevermind. But thats the address.-Anon

Anonymous said...

Calvin Perrys was 4021 S. Clinton St.

4029 1/2 S. Barr was Jackie Murray's address (Calvins girlfriend at the time)(Its actually Murray not plural)

3406 S. Barr is also another address significant but its too much typing for now.

I'll return at a later date.
I come here periodically and type under Anon.(August 2010-Sept 2011) Be well everybody.

Anonymous said...

I hung out with calvin and never once seen and angry, agressive, or unhappy attitude in him. Calvin was soft spoken, kind and thoughtful.....i didnt believe it then and still dont believe he did it. It just wasnt his nature. He was a fall guy!!!!! Sorry calvin that you were taken from us so soon

Anonymous said...

I'm getting in the game a little late here but recently wanted to look up this senseless murder because I played little league baseball in Kansas with the son (Ben) in the early '80's. I remember my dad telling me about what happened to the family. I forgot they had moved to Indiana but still have our team photo. Ben was a nice kid and I remember him from the team. I'm not sure why people would profess the innocence of the killer since he confessed, then killed himself in jail, and no one else has ever been charged, but whatever. RIP Osborne family. I hope Caroline is OK.

Anonymous said...

I'm afraid you are wrong. The coroner at the time proved it was possible to hang ones self in that cell. In fact he nearly hanged himself demonstrating. Swinging from the rafters is NOT the only way to die by hanging. You only need a small amount of pressure around your neck to cut off blood flow to your brain. You lose consciousness in less than a minute. It can be done while sitting on the floor with the cloth wrapped around the bed post.

I also personnely know another family that was attacked in their home by Calvin Perry. The mom fought him off with a fireplace poker and he ran before he seriously hurt anyone. This was shortly after the Osborn killings. They positively identified CP. CP was a deeply disturbed young man on his way to becoming a serial killer.

I have also read some of the police reports and learned two things: CP told police things about the crime scene they did not previously know. Like how he gained entry into the Osborn home. Their original theory was wrong. And, 2, the police detectives, at least at that time where not very bright.

Anonymous said...

They also claimed he hung himself fr "k" block,in a specific cell. That cell number alludes me now. Anyways, that cell had no bars, never has & has not as of 2001. The coroner at the time was Riemans & Moses golf & gambling buddy amogst "other" things.

Anonymous said...

That is because you're not going by the independant investigation, but rather what the police reported to the papers. That is also in their files and tapes. What you have not heard is the full tape and read full paperwork. I always said I cannot say with any degree of certainty he didn't kill the Osbornes, I said he didnt commit suicide. Make no mistake about it, Calvin wasnt a good guy at all. I am however saying it was a botched & bullshit "investigation" (if u want to call it that) from jump.

On the tapes, they kept feeding him & feeding him more & more info about the layout of their house. Each time he'd get it wrong, they would suggest and influence until he got it right,all the while saying "we dont think youre a bad kid, we think it was drugs and u dont want the death penalty, do u?"

"Help us help u Calvin"

All the while denying it for the first 7 hours.

Guess you would have to listen to it.

Kimberly Creek said...

Where are these tapes? I lived a few blocks from the Osbourne home when this happened. I remember the police search that night and then being in the alley behind our house looking for the "suspect" at the time.

Paul Federspiel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I worked for the same newspaper at the time. We were having a convention at the time when I heard. I knew a girl who was dating the guy who found the family dead. I heard many details about the murders through her because her boyfriend shared them. I truly do not believe CP did it and fear the real killer got away with it. Who knows if more have died because of a butched investigation and having in mind to solve the murders "no matter what or how". Those people investigating will never admit wrong doing. My question is "with the new technology available, since the little girl was raped, wouldn't there be a way to do DNA testing and rule I or out CP.? I pray the truth will come out. And no, I'm not black.

For the original person's post:
Divorce is a terrible experience for all involved but the children are the victims. At the time, parents are so focused on themselves that they (not intentionally) neglect and dine times use the children. God has nothing to do with any of that. He gives us all free will for us to choose. There are good and bad consequences fir all our choices but unfortunately there are also victims that do not deserve the pain or outcomes. You need to use your experiences to better yourself and others around you. Your shouldn't allow your past and pain to keep you as a victim but turn it to be a blessing that makes you and the ones you love better people. I hope you have done that already. Forgiveness is not for those who hurt us but for ourselves so that our load is lightened and we can move on to enjoy the blessings of today. Prayers and blessings to you and your loved ones. azzc

Joseph Hurtsellers said...

I remember this case well. I had friends who served as police officers. I don't know what happened to this murderer. But it was clear to the people close to the case he was a serial killer who confessed details about the scene only a killer would have known.

Joseph Hurtsellers said...

I remember this case well. I had friends who served as police officers. I don't know what happened to this murderer. But it was clear to the people close to the case he was a serial killer who confessed details about the scene only a killer would have known.

Anonymous said...

I stumbled upon this very old blog because on December 28 I always Google Calvin Perry. See on December 28, 1983 he broke into my home and raped my mom and I. He tried to penetration me with his penis but completely tore me on the inside, so he used his fingers. His face is embedded in my brain forever, along with the smell of his breath and skin. We weren't murdered, but left to die. He beat me with a fire place poker, he broke a solid oak rocker over my mom's head, left us lying on the floor register to die. Unfortunately, I didn't get to know the goid natured, meek, kind young man; I met the monster who terrorizes my dreams.

Joseph Hurtsellers said...

I'm so sorry Anonymous... you are in my thoughts and prayers. I'm glad this monster was caught. I'm so grateful for your post. This is the kind of information that was widely known at the time about who he was - and to blame racism (a real issue) is insane and hurts that cause.

People like you that go on and live productive lives are heroes.