Chapter 41

November 12th, 2010

Firefight For My Life

I arrived Friday at The Cabin around 17:15hrs (5:15pm), disarmed the building, fed and watered Jenny (the mixed-breed, half-frozen puppy I'd found along the road, rescued, and bought from her uncaring owners for $150), and called Sheriff Capt Bunce and Sgt Clay Atler to see how the two injured Deputies were doing, and what they'd found since my last visit, in the "Bigfoot" cave complex. He said the Deputies were recovering, and that they had plans


to bring-down the entire cave complex inside the mountain to kill them all, within 2 days. The State Police and their highly-trained demolition crews would be here with 1-2 days, to do the job.

I unpacked, and planned to spend two full days and nights here, away from it all. I lit a roaring fire, since it was ony 43°F and the temps dropping fast. I turned-up the furnace to 78°F to warm The Cabin, entirely. I poured a ½ snifter of 50-year old Cognac, and plopped down in my overstuffed leather chair, while Jenny curled-up on her Kodiak Bearskin rug. I had a couple of honey-coated pretels, and a lit a Marlboro, still waiting for my "real 100 Cuban Cigar shipment" (don't ask) to arrive. I turned-on the local police scanner, and it was crackling with all kinds of action: break-ins, robberies, muggings etc. I was tenpted to call Sgt Clay and ask him to "deputize me", but that was none of my business. Besides, as a professionally-trained, 3rd Special Forces 101st Airborne (Green Berets) Sniper, all I knew how to to was *kill people and break things*, and they didn't need that amongst the so-called civilian population.

I opted to stay put, went to the front door, armed the building, and lit the front/rear spotlights on The Cabin. Then, I saw "them": the Holtzapples, Groves and their cousins and friends, circling The Cabin. I immediately called 911, as well as Sheriff Capt Bunce and Sgt Clay, and told them that I'd spotted at least 9 perps in the woods, with my night-visions goggles. They said they were "short-handed" and would notify the PA State Police and SWAT Teams to respond. Just hold my ground, they said. Easier said than done, 9 vs 1, BTW. But with my 3rd SF Sniper training and 3 tours in the Nam, I was fairly confident. But that was 37 years ago.

I moved Jenny into the wine cellar, out of the line of fire, readied the Full-Auto AR-10 .308cal (7.62 x 51mm NATO), with the Leupold Gold Dot Mark 4 CQ/T Scope, and .308cal (7.62 x 51mm NATO) ammo in the new 20-round magazines, doped the scope to 75 yds, and loaded one of its 6 20-round mags, as well and as my Beowulf .50cal with an EoTech Red Dot Scope, and 10 extra 11-round mags of 335gr .50cal rounds (causing massive damage to whatever it hits inside of 200yds), and the Remy 11-87 Semi-Automatic 12ga Shotgun with devastating Federal 12ga .00 Buck "FliteControl®" Shells. My sidearm. the Kimber 1911 "Eclipse Target II" .45cal ACP, was ready for in-close combat with 6 8-round mags with Cor-Bon 165gr HPs, and I had plenty more ammo in the Pantry, waiting to be loaded and fired. I turned the inside lights down, except the fireplace, and waited for something to happen and trigger the event.

On Friday, I'd just received 1,100 rounds of .50cal 400gr Speer Ammo for my Alexander Arms Beowulf .50cal, and had sorely wished that I'd brought it along. Too bad I didn't. It would have "solved" the night's problems, very, very quickly, instead of carrying a rifle and a shotgun. Well, it is what it is, tonite.

I waited 15-30mins for the PA State and SWAT Team to show, but when they didn't, I took things into my own hands. I took the AR-10 with it's 6 20-round mags, Remy 11-87 Auto-Loader 12ga and my sidearm Kimber 1911 .45cal ACP with 6 8-round mags, and a satchel of assorted ammo for the 3 weapons, and crawled-out of the root-cellar door from the basement. I encountered 3 heavily-armed Holzapples in a grove of Sasafrass trees, taking aim at The Cabin, and opened fire with the Remy 11-87. They went down like sagging lumps-of-shit, after firing only one poorly-aimed shot over my head. I moved on to the next Grove, now that my position had been discovered, and returned fire that was already coming in. I crawled on my belly and kept very low.

I reloaded the Remy 11-87 Auto-Loader — with 7 slugs in the tube and 1 in the chamber — and, with my night-vision goggles, spotted two more Holtzapple & Groves, mixed, in a thicket. Each was armed with a 30.06 Winchester or several illegal, full-auto AK-47s, amd I dropped the both of them, each one with a Sniper's Triangle shot, just above the breastplate. They dropped like "a 50-lb sack of shit on a 20-mile hike". Fast. Just a few more to go and I'd be done with these asshole, neo-nazi scumbags. I slithered over to the next 3 neo-nazis, and head-shot all three, within 6-7 seconds. My AR-10 & night goggles are that accurate, when combined with a night-vision scope, which is easy to move from rifle to shotgun. Event over.

The remaining perp took-off like a "bat-out-of-hell", just as the police cars and ambulances roared into the 1,000ft gravel drive and up to The Cabin. I called Sheriff Capt Bunce and Sgt Atler and let them know what I'd done and where I was, so they didn't mistake me for one of the perps. The police fanned-out and started combing the property; there must have been 30 of them, this time. I stood-up, put my rifles over my head, and walked out into the clearing, and immediately Sgt Clay Atler and two PA State Police took me into "protective custody", as four more PA State Police joined them, forming a cordon around me. We went back to The Cabin, as they could see I was visibly-shaken from all the shooting and killing. I surrendered all my weapons, mags and satchel on the massive oak Dining Room Table, as they "politely-requested".

I lit a Marlboro, had a sip of Cognac, and heard the reports coming in from the Troopers and Deputies on their radios about all the bodies and weapons lying around the 4-acre meadow. 8 dead; 1 missing, according to my calculations. I was peppered with all kinds of questions from both the PA State Troopers and Sheriff Capt Bunce, and I tried to answer them as best as I could, given what I'd just been through (without their help). Sgt Clay Atler yelled for everyone to "slow down" and let me catch my breath and organize my thoughts, and the room went quiet. I lit another Marlboro and had two more sips of Cognac, and then started from the beginning, laying-out the whole scenario for their records. Meanwhile, 5 ambulances were "tagging &bagging" the various bodies for a trip to the Coroner's Office, for positive ID.

"Well John, you really stepped into it this time, didn't you?", commented Chief Bunce. "I think you got them all except the one that got away. He's going to be coming back, at some point in time, to try to get you, possibly with "friends". It'd have been better if you'd killed him, too", Bunce said. I agreed. But after seeing his neo-nazi cousins and friends killed, he "beat feet" quickly, because he knew he was toast if he stayed and fought me. I excused myself and let Jenny out of the basement, and she jumped-up with her front paws on my shoulders, and gave me a big lick on both cheeks. That broke the tense atmosphere in the room with the PA State Troopers, Chief Bunce and Sgt Atler; they all had a good laugh, and finished writing-up their official "incident report" questionaires.

The fire in the massive hearth was almost out, and I excusd myself, a Deputy accompanying me all the time, while I brought-in more splitwood and another 3ft log from the Firewood Stack on the Back Porch, and added the split firewood first, to get the fire re-started, then added the log in a few minutes. The "official reports" listed the incident as "justified" self-defense and Sheriff Bunce assured me that no charges would be filed against me. "No shit, Roy", I said: "they attacked first and outnumbered me 9 to 1. I was definitely the victim, once again." The shooting was "justified", once again.

I just wanted to take a shower, get into some clean clothes, and go to sleep. It was the end of DST, and I had an extra hour of sleep at my disposal. The police left with all their paperwork, and I did just that. 30 mins in the shower, washing the mud and grime and killing down the drain, armed the building, turned-up the furnace to 75°F again, killed the lights and went to sleep in the Master Bedroom. Jenny jumped-in at the foot of the queen-sized-bed and curled-up to sleep. All was well, once again.

Not so in my dreams. The reason I had bought this 43-acre property and modernized Cabin was to "get-away" from all the hubris and BS of York (PA) and my Business, on a semi-regular basis, or whenever I could, and not to have to fight VietNam all over again, this time with crazy rednecks, neo-nazis and skinheads. All I wanted was "peace and quiet", and to read some long-held books and relax; not all of this confrontational crap. I was rich beyond belief from the gold/ gold ore strike, and could do anything I wanted to to do, buy anything I wanted to, or build anything I wanted to, but I really wanted to see the 30 "Princeton" American Elms, which Tim Swanson and I had planted a few weeks ago, grow to maturity and provide the shade, which I needed, at The Cabin. It was now time to think about selling The Cabin and going elsewere to vacation. Then, I fell into a deep sleep.

I slept until almost 1pm on Sunday, made Eggs Benedict, Bacon, toast and French-Roast, Turkish-Grind Coffee (from fresh, whole beans) with my Chemex® Drip System, and headed out to Bev & Tony's General Store to fill my shoppinglist for the Condo, which was long, considering I hadn't gone food shopping in two weeks. I filled 1¼ carts of canned goods and other assorted items, to re-fill my Pantry & Larder, back at the Condo, and cleaned-off the list. Mission accomplished. $157.50 did the deed. I loaded it all into the back of the Jeep and headed back to The Cabin. It would stay cold until I left for home, in the late morning. It was 37°F here in the mountains; even colder than my 'fridge.

I woke-up at 01:44hrs (1:44am) and went to the Living Room & Hearth, which was still burning the 3ft log, and lit a Marlboro and had a snall snifter of Cognac, to think about all my recent "dreams and thoughts". I decided it was time to leave and find another place, in some other county in PA, since this place was too full of confrontation/ killing, for me. I'd spent a lot of cash fixing-up the place to my specs, but I'd have to put it on the market, and see what it would sell for. I'd spent over $35,500 to bring it up to my specs. I'd buy or build another Cabin, somewhere else, for a "getaway". Or maybe not. I'd bet that Sheriff Roy Bunce and Sgt Clay Atler would relish the idea of me leaving, and letting their little virtual hamlet "get back to normal, again"; whatever that was, before I arrived.

Dismayed, I went back to bed and a deep, long sleep. If I'd only "gotten" the one that got away, dammit, maybe I wouldn't have to leave this bucolic place.

I slept until 14:10hrs (2:10pm) on Sunday, really tired-out from the previous night's "activity". I put on my Turkish Bathrobe and went into the kitchen to brew some coffee, and noticed that there were 7-8 unmarked police cars in the meadow, with CSI guys walking around, picking-up shell casings, taking measurements, spraying orange paint around the blood spots, and where the 8 bodies were last night, as indicated by Bunce's and Atler's drawings.

I got dressed and drove into town to gas-up at Roy's Shell Gas & Service Station, for the trip back to York. The sidewalks were full of people, who'd left Church and were shopping, and as I drove through town, they waved and clapped at me. WTH? Could it be that they were thankful that I "almost cleaned-out the nest of neo-nazi vipers", which Bunce, Atler & the PA State Police hadn't been able to do? When I parked in the Shell station to fill-up, several dozen crossed the street and shook my hand, as well as back-slapped me with gratitude for what I'd done over he past 8 months, in cleansing their town and surrounding area of the skinhead/ neo-nazi filth. I was truly embarassed, for if they'd known the true story – it wasn't a "duck-shoot" – it was them or me. My 3rd SF Sniper Training and 3 tours in Nam had once again saved my ass. But I didn't bring that up. I smiled gratefully and accepted their thanks. I put $20 worth of Regular, at $2.85/ gal, into the Jeep, but Roy refused to accept it, so I slipped it into his shirt pocket, got back inside and drove back to The Cabin.

The CSI guys were still there, with a few less cars, still taking measurements and cataloging more evidence, as I expected they would be. Good grief, when would this be over and where I could find a place to just relax and enjoy some time off? I noticed that 30 the newly-planted "Princeton" American Elms had dropped their leaves, were budded-up for Spring, and had gone dormant for the Winter. I'd leave the 2 stakes on each tree until late Summer 2011, when I'm sure they'll have rooted-in securely. Leaves were coming down fast and furious from all the other larger trees, too, as the much colder nights up here put the trees into dormancy sooner than in York and into Maryland.

I packed my old US Army duffel bag, gathered-up my rifle and shotgun and threw the empty .308cal mags into the satchel for reloading since brass has become so darned expensive, refilled Jenny's 3 bowls, loaded the Jeep, armed the building and left for York. It was getting on to 16:15hrs (4:15pm) amd getting dusk, and I just made it home by early dark, no thanks to ex-DST. I had to be at work at 06:00hrs (6am) on Monday, and needed another night's good sleep without any sleeping pills, so I could get up and get in there and get the LSCP Crew and GC&N Staff moving. I arrived back at the Condo in a few minutes from The Cabin, and fed and watered Murphy, my remaining condo cat. I shaved, showered, logged-on the computer, checked the weather and news sites, shut-it-down after an hour or so, and went to sleep at around 19:45hrs (7:45pm). Unusual for me, but considering what I'd been through last night, at almost 61 years old, I was tired and needed the extra sleep.

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