Chapter 84

April 6th, 2012

Brief Easter Weekend

With the cherry, plum, redbud, magnolia and pear trees in full bloom everywhere, I left York on Friday, April 6th, at 1930hrs (7:30pm) and took I-83 North to the exit for Adam's Junction, nestled in the still snowy mountains of northern Pennsylvania. I soon hit the inner environs just off of the interstate, and drove along the long and winding side road, heading east to "The Cabin", just 15 miles south of The Town. It was amazing that there was still so much snow remaining this far north of the York and Harrisburg areas, but at least it was now melting. I pulled into my snowy 1,000ft lane, parked under the left-side carport, disarmed the building and went inside to see

Jenny, who almost knocked me over when she jumped-up to lick my face. I watered & fed her first, turned-up the heat to 78°F, built a roaring fire, brought-in the few groceries and put them into the Kitchen 'Fridge & Pantry, and then carried-in and unpacked my selected Weapons & Gear. I called Capt Clay at the AJPD, and got right through on his cellphone, letting him know that I wouldn't be available this weekend, due to it being Easter Weekend and that I had to be back very early Sunday morning, to get Easter Sunday Dinner ready for Mom & Dad. I could help out for all of next weekend, if he neede me. He was appreciative of the call and said he'd look forward to then for my help. I wished him and his family a Happy & Blessed Easter. Next, I called William-The-Caretaker and told him the same thing, so that he'd be in by midday Sunday to begin take-over care of Jenny, in my absence next week. I'd also leave his monthly check on the Kitchen Table, instead of mailing it. Next was a call to leave a message for Tony & Bev (The General Store), letting them also know my situation, but that if "anything" happened, they could reach me until 0500hrs (5am) on Sunday morning. I was hoping that Tony was now fully-recovered from his heart attack a few weeks ago, and that they wouldn't have to call me – Bev didn't need the drama or stress and I needed the uninterrupted peace and quiet after this past week – but, if they did, I'd be there for them.

Now 2100hrs (9:00pm), it was raining/sleeting outside and everything became gradually-encased in a layer of ice. I was glad I'd had William-The-Caretaker build the new, and relatively

inexpensive carport and ante-room, onto the left-side of The Cabin last Summer, as it saved me hundreds of hours (and maybe a heart attack) digging-out/clearing-off the Jeep during the Winter months. I checked the Weather Station, which picked-up its wireless broadcast signal from my 100ft tower through the AJPD signal just over 15 miles away, and it showed a continuing rain/sleet frontal line moving through, which would probably last into midday Saturday.

I made a quick snack BLT with Fried Egg & Cheese, had a glass of Ocean Spray® Diet Cranberry Juice, did the dishes, grabbed a shower and some fresh clothes, armed The Cabin and settled back onto the comfy Living Room Couch for a rest. Jenny was asleep on her repaired/cleaned, newly-returned Kodiak Bearskin, near the fireplace. Natch.

I still had the unfinished copy of Ameritopia: The Unmaking of America by Mark Levin ESQ, Constitutional Scholar, eminent national attorney and a most-entertaining Talk Show Host, on the table from several weeks ago, bookmarked at page 177. I turned-on the Police Scanner to catch-up on what was happening around The Village; it was quiet since most people were at home during the passing sleet/ice storm. At least there wouldn't be any serious "road carnage" now, and Clay and The Deputies could have an easier time of the Holiday Weekend, if that's possible.

After re-stoking the fire, I continued reading until 0100hrs (1:00am) when I started nodding-off and noticed that the fire was dying-down, and it was time to get some sleep, as I had a list of food shopping to do in Town tomorrow, for Sunday's Easter Dinner. I checked the windows and doors, turned-down the furnace to 65°F, set the front & rear spotlight arrays/front porch light timer, armed the building's Honeywell® Lynx™ Plus® Security System and headed to bed. Jenny quickly followed me to the Master Bedroom. The rain and sleet beat a steady rat-a-tat-tat against The Cabin's west-facing windows.

It was still dark on Saturday when I woke at 0630hrs (6:30am), and in this storm, it would be that way for at least another 1-2 hours, up here in any storm. The clouds were low and visibililty was down to less than 100ft with the fog. The Cabin's windows were iced-over pretty heavily on the west and north sides, so I opened the inner front door and was glad I'd installed the tempered glass

storm door 2 years ago. It faced east, so I had a decent view out across the front meadow. It was a "Winter Wonderland" out there, all too eerily quiet and serene. But at this time in the morning, I appreciated it. After splashing some cold well water in my eyes, turning-up the heat to 77°F and getting dressed, I found Jenny sitting in the Kitchen & Pantry area, waiting for her breakfast. I took care of her chow and water, and set about making my own breakfast, as The Cabin warmed-up nicely. I made Fresh-Squeezed OJ with lots of pulp, Eggs Benedict with fresh Hollandaise Sauce in a double boiler, a bowl of Grits w/ Butter & Sea Salt, a couple of Hash Browns, browned Country Sausage and French-Roast, Turkish-Grind Coffee (from whole, freshly-ground beans) with my Chemex® Drip System. I was bloated from all that food! Bur-r-r-r-r-p. Heh, sorry. Crap; I felt like going back to sleep for a couple of hours, but needed to get my Easter Dinner shopping done, in Town.

Based upon what the Weather Station was still showing at 0830hrs (8:30am), I decided to take an extra First Aid Kit, in addition to the Commercial First Aid Kit which I always carry in the Jeep, 3 extra wool blankets, an extra 2 jugs of water and some snack crackers. I packed those into the Jeep's Cargo Bay crate, next to my BOB (Bug Out Bag), loaded the Beowulf® .50cal, with a newly-fitted Trijicon® TA648-50 6x48 ACOG Scope, and 10 extra 11-round mags for .50cal 335gr rounds, my new Remy® 11-87 Versa®-Max Tactical Semi-Automatic 12ga Shotgun with devastating Federal® 12ga .00 Buck (9 pellets) "FliteControl®" Shells, and EoTech® Red Dot Scope. Both long guns in their individual Eagle Carrying Bags, magazines and ammo were loaded into the Jeep, within easy reach

from my driver's seat. Of course, I had my daily "carry piece", the Kimber® 1911 "Eclipse Target II" .45cal ACP, with a Premium 8-Round Wilson Combat Magazine, in my leather Galco® PLE Paddle Holster, and another Galco® Paddle Dual 8-Round Mag Carrier for 2 add'l Premium 8-Round Wilson Combat Magazines on, with the Deputy Sheriff Badge & ID and Deputy Sheriff Baseball Cap, "just in case" I'd be needed to help Capt Clay, or be involved in something unexpected.

After turning down the furnace, arming The Cabin with my Honeywell® Ademco™ 5804 Wireless Key Transmitter, I left in the sleet and drove out of the snowy and icy 1,000ft gravel drive, turned right on to winding road to Adam's Junction, and headed north. The DPW Road Crews had spread salt/cinders, so the driving wasn't all that treacherous, as long as I stayed at 30-35mph, but I just didn't feel safe at much over that, even with the Jeep's AWD. So I drove relatively slowly, with my emergency flashers on. There wasn't another vehicle on the roads; an eery feeling in all this sleet storm-induced surrealness. I needed to stop at Bev & Tony's General Store downtown first, to get half of the list filled, and then over to the Shop Rite Supermarket, on the west side of town, to get the rest of the items, including some perisahable goods.

At 1015hrs (10:15am), I parked in front of The General Store, went inside to greet Bev & Tony, and we had coffee and a long catch-up chat. Tony was doing fine after his recent heart attack, with much-needed rest, diet and meds, plus Bev had gotten plenty of part-time help from friends and neighbors during Tony's convalescence, and all was well. I'd sent her a check for $1,000 to help cover some of her additional and unplanned medical costs. I had a shopping basket and began loading-in items from my list. My cellphone rang; it was Capt Clay, asking if I was in-town or still at The Cabin. As I told him I was at Bev & Tony's, he quickly interrupted my next sentence and "officially asked me" to go down There is no gray area. Things are or they are not. Life is indeed binary – zeroes and ones, right and wrong, true or false, black and white. That gray area is why our society is crumbling around us; too many people simply can't see beyond the gray. Main Street a few doors and check on The Gallery Shop in the pink Purves Building, just off The Town Square. There was a call from across the store across the street about a "415 (Disturbance)" and he didn't have a Deputy in the area, but Deputy Jon was on his way from the north end of Town; ETA 10 minutes. I said okay. I put my cellphone on "vibrate", so if it unexpectedly rang, it wouldn't arouse anyone else. I chambered a round in the Kimber 1911 .45cal, safety ON, got my new Remy® 11-87 Versa®-Max Tactical Semi-Automatic 12ga Shotgun out of the Jeep's back seat, loaded the 8-round internal tube magazine, chambered an extra round, safety ON, and carefully walked up to the pink storefront's left-side front window corner, and peered through it into the store. Empty. I moved to the doorway, noticed an "shopkeeper's bell" overhead, so I reached-up and gently twisted-off the hanging brass clapper so it wouldn't accidentally "announce" my presence, crouched low and snuck just inside the doorway.

I heard loud voices from the rear of the shop, but couldn't see over the retail display shelf islands, nor could I see clearly around them to the back, as they were randomly-placed on the old wooden floors. I had to move quietly, despite the creaky flooring, around several, to get a clear view of the backroom, where the commotion was coming from. I could see shadows on the wall just inside the backroom doorway, but no distinct players. Just as I was edging toward the room, the counter's phone rang and I ducked back against a free-standing display as a large man's shadow came out from the room. I peered around the opposite side of the display, and recognized his sawed-off 12ga; just like the many I'd seen the Holtzapples and Groves use effectively on numerous people, over the past 2 years. I leaned my Remy 1187 12ga against the opposite wall; there just wasn't enough room to operate it effectively I'd rather regret the things I've done, than the things I haven't done. in such tight confines. I would use my Kimber 1911 .45cal with devastating 230gr Hollow-Points in this close-quarters confrontation. I had 2 extra mags along in another Galco® Paddle Dual 8-Round Mag Carrier, for a total of 24 rounds, so I was good to go. It wouldn't take that many to get this done. I clicked the safety OFF. Time to "rock 'n roll"; now or never.

The big man grabbed a woman – I recognized her as the shop owner whom I'd met at the 2010 Town Meeting – and forced her over to answer the phone. I could hear the fear in her quivering voice as she reached to pick-up the receiver. The fat man slapped her and she screamed, so I moved around the retail display and – "in a fight, front sight" – quickly-fired 3 rounds into his chest and head. I saw the blood splatter on the wall next to him, and knew he was done. I quickly ran to the room's doorway, crouched down and looked low around the corner: another one with a sawed-off was coming toward me. My left hand reached around the door jam and fired the Kimber .45cal ACP twice into him, stopping and bolting him upright, and he reflexively-fired the 12ga into the ceiling. KA-BOOM! Plaster and lath wood everywhere; what a mess and he hit a water pipe, too! I fired two more shots into him as he stumbled backward, just to "be sure". Down and dead. All threats neutralized. I called Capt Clay just as I heard sirens outside. He, Deptuies Jon and Sgt Alex, and two Memorial Hospital ambulances arrived, and went into immediate action.

I secured the 2 dead perps' weapons, calmed the shop's 3 trembling and screaming ladies, and we waited for Clay and Alex to get inside. They did quickly and the EMT medics followed, rendering aid and comfort to the women. Sgt Alex had the gushing water pipe turned off by now, but the wooden floor was definitely needing a long dry-out period, plus the mixed-in plaster and lath made quite a mess. Not my problem, thankfully. I worked with Clay to fill-out the electronic and paper Incident Reports, while Deputy Jon shot pics for the later CSI Report. Deputies Arthur and Jeff had the street and building secured and taped-off, while we followed-up on the details and reports. That shop's backroom and rear counter area were a mess, but the owner was thankful it was over and she could soon get back to "normal". Her words. I nodded and asked Clay if he was finished with me so I A cat can give birth to kittens, in an empty oven, but that don't make 'em biscuits. could get back to The General Store and finish my shopping. He was and I did. It was now 1130hrs (11:30am), and Bev & Tony were waiting on their Store's front steps for me.

I stowed the Remy 1187 12ga back into the Jeep, glad I hadn't tried to use it, afterall. It was loaded with devastating Federal® 12ga .00 Buck (9 pellets) "FliteControl®" Shells, which produce a very tight 3-4" pattern at 100ft; actually, too tight in that kind of close-quarters fight, IMO. I made a mental note to to include standard .00Buckshot Shells on its Sidesaddle Carrier, for just such occasions. I noticed that my right hand was now trembling slightly; I didn't know why. I shook it off and went inside to finish this initial part of my shopping.

By 1220hrs (12:20pm) I was done at Bev & Tony's General Store, loaded-up and said goodbye to them. Capt Clay had since left the crime scene down the block, while Sgt Alex and Deputy Jon were still there "working it"; Deputies Arthur and Jeff had also gone back on patrol. I drove to the Shop Rite Supermarket, on the west side of town, where I could get the remaining items on my list. When I pulled into the parking lot, I saw that Deputy Jeff was already there in one of the AJPD's new unmarked, gray cruisers. I have the AJPD, Capt Clay, Sgt Alex, Deputies Jon, Arthur, Jeff, Tim and Lee on my old Nokia 6060 "Clamshell" cellphone's "speed dial" feature. I dialed Jeff's number and waited; no answer. I pulled my Kimber 1911 .45cal, chambered a round, put the safety back ON and slid it loosely back into my Galco® PLE Paddle Holster, checked that my Deputy Sheriff Badge & ID was concealed, and went inside. No sign of Deputy Jeff. I quickly scanned each checkout cashier, customer and stock boy/girl in the front of the store; nothing "expressive" to tell me that things weren't "normal". But WTF was Jeff? I took a shopping cart and slowly pushed it down aisle 1, mixing-in with other shoppers. I put my list on the steel, fold-out child's seat and moved over to aisle 2, then 3 and 4, and then from aisle 5, I saw Jeff through the double swinging doors to the loading docks. His hands were up and he was backed against a wall, while another large man held him at-bay, with a pistol. I let go of the cart, drew the Kimber and made my way along the aisle shelf, for cover, to aisle 9 of 16, in front of the backroom/loading dock's doors. I peeked around the corner and Jeff looked right at me; the large man noticed Jeff's glance began to turn and point his weapon at me, and I shot him twice. Then, a third time, just for good measure. He went careening backward and crashing down very hard into a stack of canned goods cases. I looked to my left and saw another perp, pistol drawn, running toward us from the loading bay, so I drew-down on him and fired 2x. And another time, also for "good measure". He was down. Jeff secured the first perp's .40cal weapon as I kept my

Kimber .45cal aimed at the second bad guy and retrieved his nickel-plated, 9mm semi-auto. Jeff called it in to the AJPD and Capt Clay told us to "sit tight"; he and the others would be there in under 5 minutes. Within 2 minutes, I heard distant sirens, as Deputies Tim and Lee arrived from their nearby patrol assignments. Bother perps were dead, as were this morning's 2 bad guys. Eh, so what? IMO, no further PA Taxpayer costs. Callous yes, but real-world smart.

I didn't have to ask Jeff why he hadn't answer my call; he'd been bushwacked on the loading dock, and one of the dead perps had busted his lower lip. I gave him some extra Kleenex from my topshirt's pocket, since he had blood running down his chin. The EMT/medics would clean and fix him up, but Capt Clay wouldn't be happy about his obvious procedure screw-up. You just simply don't walk into any area, after answering a 211-S Code; that's a no-no. Even I knew that, and I didn't go to any high-priced PA State Police Academy to learn something so obvious. 3rd Special Forces 101st Airborne (Green Berets) in VietNam, taught me that and much, much more. In any situation like that, an ambush is a "given"; it's just a matter of "where and when" it'll happen. Be prepared to deal with it before it happens, or you're most likely going to wind-up dead. Jeff wouuld have to learn that, or he'd soon be dead, like Deputies Bob, killed 5/1/11, Charles, killed 5/19/11, and Alan, killed 11/19/11. All 3 had been careless, just for a split-second, at the wrong instant – that's all it took – and it cost them dearly. Nothing that I could say to Jeff would matter, at this point; that was Clay's job. I knew better, from past experience.

Capt Clay & Sgt Alex had arrived took-over the crime scene immediately, and Deputy Jeff was "escorted" by Clay to a private area where I overheard him give poor Jeff the third-degree. Alex winked at me; I just nodded as he handed me a cipboard to begin filling-out another damned Incident Report, in triplicate. The taped statement would come in a few minutes. I didn't even bring-up the subject of why I was here, but Clay asked, and I told him that I'd stopped by to finish some food shopping after not getting everything I needed at Bev & Tony's Store. He said, "That's now two places you were in today, at the right time for everyone, isn't it?" I just nodded and smiled. "My Kimber needed the workout today", I quipped. Clay smiled. "Now, you'll have to clean it, won't you?" I smiled. "That's the easy part of today", I said. The Memorial Hospital ambulances had arrived and one EMT was tending to Deputy Jeff's split lip. They weren't needed; the Coroner's Wagon was, once again. It would be another hour or so until this crime scene was wrapped-up, so I asked Clay if I could finish my shopping. He said yes, and told me that the two perps I'd shot this morning at The Gallery, had been ID'd as Frederick "Pizza Man" Holtzapple and Bruce "Big Bud" Grove, both wanted on several prior felony warrants. No loss; good riddance and rot in Hell.

Customers had been permitted back inside the supermarket, once everything had settled-down; I didn't even know they'd been cleared-out. Deputies Jon and Tim had evacuated the store, and the front of the supermarket looked like a police station parking lot, with all of the cruisers parked there. I only neede a couple of things and finished quickly; one of the pretty cashiers even asked for my phone

number. Woo-hoo! No, I didn't. After loading the bag into the Jeep, I left for The Cabin. It'd already been a long day and was only 1550hrs (3:50pm). At least the ride home would be uneventful. I needed to stop at the Dry Cleaners and pick-up my washed/starched shirts, and then get back to take care of Jenny. Ooops, almost forgot about her. I arrived in under 10 minutes, and unloaded the Jeep's few perishable groceries – the rest could stay in-place for the night – disarmed the building and went in to Jenny. She knocked me down this time, slobbering all over my face as she licked; she was happy to see me back. I watered & fed her, put the cold stuff into the 'fridge until Sunday, brought in the long guns, locked the Jeep and plopped down into a Comfy LR Chair. I needed a shower, so I armed the building, turned-up the furnace, grabbed a shower, some fresh clothes and began to think about something to eat. The day's "activity" had definitely worked-up an appetite.

I'd bought a whole duck breast at Shop-Rite and decided to pan-roast it, with some California vegetables, also from Shop-Rite's produce section. So I made Pan-Roasted Duck Breast w/ Butter-Braised Radishes, Broccoli & Brussels Sprouts, fresh-grilled Garlic Bread and then some Gelato drizzled w/ Balsamic Vinegar, for dessert. And, of course, a couple of glasses of Ocean Spray® Diet Cranberry-Pomegranate Juice. Jenny got a piece of the duck breat, too. After doing the dishes and letting them dry in the double-sink rack to dry, I built a roaring fire, cleaned my Kimber .45cal on the Dining Room Table on top of 7 sheets of protective newspaper, and picked-up Ameritopia and continued reading. I put my cellphone on charge, since it was down to 2 bars; I'd get any incoming messages, later. It was now 1830hrs 6:30pm) and already getting slightly dusk outside, though it wouldn't "officially" be dark for another 2 hours. I had time.

By 2100hrs (11:00pm), I was ready to call it quits and wanted to sleep in late on Sunday, but I had to get up very early, get things wrapped-up here and leave for York. I had a lot to do to get ready for Easter Sunday Dinner at 1300hrs (1:00pm) with Mom & Dad. I turned down the heat, checked the front porch light, front/rear spotlight arrays' timer, called Jenny and headed to the Master Bedroom. My 2009 Kimber® 1911 "Eclipse Target II" .45cal ACP, with a Premium 8-round Wilson Combat Magazine in the well, 3 extra 8-round mags and my "ancient" 2006 Nokia 6060 "Clamshell" Cellphone were on the nightstand, next to the bed. Natch. I leave the

cellphone on overnight, after it's finished "trickle-charging", since an emergency call might come-in from anyone, at any time, and I'd need to respond ASAP. I was asleep within 5 minutes. So was Jenny.

Jenny woke me at 0215hrs (2:15am) to a noise at the front door. I grabbed the Kimber .45cal, and the small, Tactical LED Flashlight I always carry, and carefully crept to the left side of The Cabin's front door. I backed-up and looked out of the edge of the large, tempered glass front bay window. It was a 300-400lb Black Bear, rummaging around. I'd need something larger than the Kimber if it decided to attack, but I knew it was just on a "Spring foraging" trip, and not looking for a fight. I flicked-on the porch light, startled him/her and it scampered away across the snowy meadow. Back to sleep.

I got up at 0430hrs (4:30am) on Sunday, to a warm, gentle rain and 41°F, and the snow was finally in the melting process as Spring gradually came to the mountainous area. Jenny was hungry, so I fed and watered her first, splashed some cold well water on my face, turned-up the heat, put on my warm, Turkish Bathrobe, made the bed and got some things out for breakfast. I made Fresh-Squeezed OJ w/ lots of pulp, some Scrambled Eggs, a ½-lb of Bacon, pan-fried Hash Browns, 2 slices of Rye Bread Toast w/ Keller's® Butter, had a Bananna, and finished it all of with 3 mugs of French-Roast, Turkish-Grind Coffee (from whole, freshly-ground beans) with my Chemex® Drip System.

After doing the dishes & skillets, I put them into the rack to dry, got dressed and began packing-up my other clothes and Gear. I called William-The-Caretaker's cellphone and left a message that I was leaving and he should be in by midday, to start taking care of Jenny until I called later in the week, with my schedule for next weekend. I closed the chimney flu damper, which I'd forgotten to do last night, checked all of the windows and doors, warmed-up the Jeep, loaded it, said goodbye to Jenny, locked and armed the building.

As I drove out of the driveway and onto the long, winding road to I-83 South, I could see that the snow was melting and turning to slush, even at night, as temps now stayed above the freezing point. Thankfully, it was a gradual melt and there wouldn't be anymore sudden flood rescues or the horrible aftermath of recovery, as had sadly been the case, in past years. That was a terrible situation for everyone. I hit I-83 South and headed to York in a warm, gentle rain. Spring had finally come to the area; life was good again.

Valid CSS!

Valid XHTML 1.0 Strict