Skip to main content

07 Oct 09

Judge orders killer released on compassionate grounds\nRichard Keech, 89, was serving a life term for shooting his son-in-law to death in Long Beach in 1996. He suffers from dementia. The judge says there's no obvious benefit to his further imprisonment.\n\nBy Victoria Kim\n\n10:06 PM PDT, October 5, 2009\n\nIn a quiet residential neighborhood in Long Beach 13 years ago, Dick Keech fired four shots at his son-in-law, who lay face-down on a neighbor's lawn, bleeding from an earlier gunshot wound.\n\n"It's all over," he said later to a neighbor who ran out at the sound. "He won't bother anyone anymore."\n\nOn Monday, a Long Beach judge said he would grant Keech, 89, the compassion he did not show his 47-year-old son-in-law, Nick Candy, at the time of the killing in 1996. Judge William T. Garner ordered Keech, who was serving a life term for murder, released on grounds that he is medically incapacitated. The World War II veteran suffers from progressive dementia and an accompanying "sundowning" syndrome causing severe confusion, depression and terror, according to a California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation report recommending his release. He has difficulty swallowing, spends most of his days confined to his bed or his geriatric chair, and is unable to do anything on his own, the report said.

06 Sep 09

TOM HENNESSY: Time to let prisoner, a WWII POW, go home to die

TOM HENNESSY: Time to let prisoner, a WWII POW, go home to die
Posted: 09/05/2009 08:45:30 PM PDT
Updated: 09/05/2009 09:14:49 PM PDT

Prisoner Richard Keech, shown during his 1997 trial, should be allowed to go home to die with his family. (Press-Telegram file photo)

Nearing his 90th birthday, Richard Keech is confined to a medical unit at the High Desert State Prison in Susanville.

His family says he stays alive on Ensure, a nutritional drink, and on weekly letters sent from Long Beach by his wife, Kay. Prison staffers read the letters to her husband, whose sight is failing.

The 1997 trial of Keech made area headlines. A prisoner-of-war during World War II, the one-time Marine defended the murder of his son-in-law, calling it a consequence of post-traumatic stress syndrome brought on by his incarceration in a Japanese prison camp.

“My father is in prison because he killed my abusive husband to protect my son, my mother, and me,” his daughter Nancy said in a recent advertisement she ran in the Press-Telegram.

With the family trying for a compassionate discharge that would give their patriarch a brief stay at home, the ad sought letters of support from readers.

25 Aug 09

Facebook is a social utility that connects people with friends and others who work, study and live around them. People use Facebook to keep up with friends, upload an unlimited number of photos, post links and videos, and learn more about the people they meet.

25 Aug 09

Facebook is a social utility that connects people with friends and others who work, study and live around them. People use Facebook to keep up with friends, upload an unlimited number of photos, post links and videos, and learn more about the people they meet.

  • While the two men had wildly dissimilar backgrounds -- Bobby Garwood grew up poor in a trailer park in rural Indiana; Tom McKenney was raised in Old South gentility in Lexington, Ky. -- they were alike in many ways.

    Both believed in old-fashioned values like hard work, honesty, duty and personal honor, and both totally believed in, and loved, the United States Marine Corps.

      They had another thing in common: in Vietnam, both men were assigned to the intelligence (G-2) section of Marine headquarters at Da Nang, though Bobby Garwood was a lowly motor pool driver, whereas Tom McKenney, then a major, was a special operations expert. The two never met in Vietnam, however.

    Private Garwood had been a P.O.W. for three years by the time Major McKenney reported for duty in 1968.

      In 1965, 10 days before his tour in Vietnam was to end, Private Garwood was given a seemingly mundane chore by a G-2 captain. He was to drive out to China Beach, pick up an officer, take him to the airstrip and return to G-2. Armed with nothing but a pistol, and with only a sketchy idea of where he was going, he was captured by a Vietcong patrol.

      It was at this point in Private Garwood's long odyssey, the author contends, that the official machinery began to turn against him. The captain who had given him his chore, Ms. Jensen-Stevenson says, realized he'd made a mistake in sending an underarmed, unprepared private into hostile territory, and so denied ever having done so.

    Because of that denial, Private Garwood was initially listed as being absent without leave, and a possible deserter. As a result, his case was put under the jurisdiction of the criminal division of Marine counterintelligence, where it would stay until 14 years later, when the Marine Corps would charge him with desertion.

      Bobby Garwood's life, meanwhile, consisted of one brutal P.O.W. camp after another. For a variety of reasons, Ms. Jensen-Stevenson writes, his captors became convinced that he was

  • While the two men had wildly dissimilar backgrounds -- Bobby Garwood grew up poor in a trailer park in rural Indiana; Tom McKenney was raised in Old South gentility in Lexington, Ky. -- they were alike in many ways.

    Both believed in old-fashioned values like hard work, honesty, duty and personal honor, and both totally believed in, and loved, the United States Marine Corps.

      They had another thing in common: in Vietnam, both men were assigned to the intelligence (G-2) section of Marine headquarters at Da Nang, though Bobby Garwood was a lowly motor pool driver, whereas Tom McKenney, then a major, was a special operations expert. The two never met in Vietnam, however.

    Private Garwood had been a P.O.W. for three years by the time Major McKenney reported for duty in 1968.

      In 1965, 10 days before his tour in Vietnam was to end, Private Garwood was given a seemingly mundane chore by a G-2 captain. He was to drive out to China Beach, pick up an officer, take him to the airstrip and return to G-2. Armed with nothing but a pistol, and with only a sketchy idea of where he was going, he was captured by a Vietcong patrol.

      It was at this point in Private Garwood's long odyssey, the author contends, that the official machinery began to turn against him. The captain who had given him his chore, Ms. Jensen-Stevenson says, realized he'd made a mistake in sending an underarmed, unprepared private into hostile territory, and so denied ever having done so.

    Because of that denial, Private Garwood was initially listed as being absent without leave, and a possible deserter. As a result, his case was put under the jurisdiction of the criminal division of Marine counterintelligence, where it would stay until 14 years later, when the Marine Corps would charge him with desertion.

      Bobby Garwood's life, meanwhile, consisted of one brutal P.O.W. camp after another. For a variety of reasons, Ms. Jensen-Stevenson writes, his captors became convinced that he was

  • What should bother everyone is the amount of credence given by returned POWs to what the enemy told them about each other. Much that is said about Robert Garwood is prefaced with; "The Cadre said he etc. - etc. - etc." Hardly a reliable source.
  • What should bother everyone is the amount of credence given by returned POWs to what the enemy told them about each other. Much that is said about Robert Garwood is prefaced with; "The Cadre said he etc. - etc. - etc." Hardly a reliable source.

  • I am somewhat surprised by the people who are being touted as the answer to all the very reasonable questions about the treatment of Robert L. Garwood by the United States Government. At various times the same individuals have had to defend themselves from allegations of collaboration with the enemy. Frankly, there is something professionally distasteful about military men sinking to the level of spoiled children, pointing the finger at another and saying; "He was worse than me." Was he? Not in my professional opinion.  I don't wish to kick the crutch from under the tired argument by too many returned POWs; "We all violated The Code to a certain extent." No, we all did not. Then there is the huge number who only produced propaganda... "To get my name out." The Code and UCMJ make no allowances for such behavior. Even though our military and government, morally and ethically weakened, seem to excuse any type of illegal, unethical and amoral behavior, with the exception of sexual harassment, they cannot ignore the law except for one low ranking person.
  • I am somewhat surprised by the people who are being touted as the answer to all the very reasonable questions about the treatment of Robert L. Garwood by the United States Government. At various times the same individuals have had to defend themselves from allegations of collaboration with the enemy. Frankly, there is something professionally distasteful about military men sinking to the level of spoiled children, pointing the finger at another and saying; "He was worse than me." Was he? Not in my professional opinion.  I don't wish to kick the crutch from under the tired argument by too many returned POWs; "We all violated The Code to a certain extent." No, we all did not. Then there is the huge number who only produced propaganda... "To get my name out." The Code and UCMJ make no allowances for such behavior. Even though our military and government, morally and ethically weakened, seem to excuse any type of illegal, unethical and amoral behavior, with the exception of sexual harassment, they cannot ignore the law except for one low ranking person.

  • MAJOR MARK A. SMITH, UNITED STATES ARMY, RETIRED, served on active duty for over twenty one years. His primary area of orientation was Asia. He served at least part of every year from 1965 to 1972 in the 2nd Indo-China War as either a Non-Commissioned Officer or, later, as an Officer. He was captured after the Battle of Loc Ninh RVN on 8 April 1972 during Escape and Evasion (E & E). He was released from a jungle prison camp in Kratie, Cambodia on 12 February 1973. He was the first U.S. Army POW returned to the United States on 14 February 1973.  Major Smith was given mandatory retirement in May 1985. In September of that year he sued President Ronald Reagan and his predecessors for the abandonment of American military men and civilians during the war in Southeast Asia.  Major Smith's combat awards include; Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, Eight Bronze Stars and four Purple Hearts.  The purpose of this page is to provide honest, up to date information on the POW/MIA issue. It also will serve as a means to update Americans and others on the continuing conflicts in Southeast Asia. Because Major Smith serves as an advisor to the Forces Of Freedom And Democracy Of Southeast Asia, it is hoped that truth will prevail over propaganda on what really happened to Americans still missing in Southeast Asia, what Southeast Asian Freedom Fighters are trying to accomplish and why governments, including our own, try so hard to make it appear that all is lost for freedom and democracy in this region.  Of historical value is Major Smith's perspective on the Vietnam War from the Non Commissioned Officer level and the Commissioned Officer level, including his command of one of the largest Infantry/Armor battles of the Vietnam War. Also provided are the Major's unvarnished opinion of leaders he served under and beside during the war and the true performance of American POWs in the Gulags of Southeast Asia.  This site will also offer opinions and unique perspective on w
  • MAJOR MARK A. SMITH, UNITED STATES ARMY, RETIRED, served on active duty for over twenty one years. His primary area of orientation was Asia. He served at least part of every year from 1965 to 1972 in the 2nd Indo-China War as either a Non-Commissioned Officer or, later, as an Officer. He was captured after the Battle of Loc Ninh RVN on 8 April 1972 during Escape and Evasion (E & E). He was released from a jungle prison camp in Kratie, Cambodia on 12 February 1973. He was the first U.S. Army POW returned to the United States on 14 February 1973.  Major Smith was given mandatory retirement in May 1985. In September of that year he sued President Ronald Reagan and his predecessors for the abandonment of American military men and civilians during the war in Southeast Asia.  Major Smith's combat awards include; Distinguished Service Cross, Silver Star, Eight Bronze Stars and four Purple Hearts.  The purpose of this page is to provide honest, up to date information on the POW/MIA issue. It also will serve as a means to update Americans and others on the continuing conflicts in Southeast Asia. Because Major Smith serves as an advisor to the Forces Of Freedom And Democracy Of Southeast Asia, it is hoped that truth will prevail over propaganda on what really happened to Americans still missing in Southeast Asia, what Southeast Asian Freedom Fighters are trying to accomplish and why governments, including our own, try so hard to make it appear that all is lost for freedom and democracy in this region.  Of historical value is Major Smith's perspective on the Vietnam War from the Non Commissioned Officer level and the Commissioned Officer level, including his command of one of the largest Infantry/Armor battles of the Vietnam War. Also provided are the Major's unvarnished opinion of leaders he served under and beside during the war and the true performance of American POWs in the Gulags of Southeast Asia.  This site will also offer opinions and unique perspective on w
20 Jan 06

Gunny G's GLOBE and ANCHOR Sites/Forums<br>
<a href="http://www.angelfire.com/ca/dickg/sites.html">http://www.angelfire.com/ca/dickg/sites.html</a><br><img src="http://tinypic.com/jrscwm.gif"

  • "Looking back on the crating of the Peking Man skulls.

      During World War II, Chinese scientists planned to have the Peking Man skulls escorted to the United States by evacuating US Marines. They were packed in two wooden crates marked A and B for the journey. But these priceless relics never made it to the safety of the American Museum of Natural History....."

  • "Looking back on the crating of the Peking Man skulls.

      During World War II, Chinese scientists planned to have the Peking Man skulls escorted to the United States by evacuating US Marines. They were packed in two wooden crates marked A and B for the journey. But these priceless relics never made it to the safety of the American Museum of Natural History....."

12 Dec 05

Gunny G's GLOBE and ANCHOR Sites/Forums<br>
<a href="http://www.angelfire.com/ca/dickg/sites.html">http://www.angelfire.com/ca/dickg/sites.html</a><br><hr>

  • "Hi! It's Tuesday morning now in Pleasant Valley (wherever that is). The good news is I once again have my word processor and am in a two man cell with a desk. The bad news is that CMC finally called my bluff. "You are the first inmate in all these years we couldn't trick into volunteering to leave. But you were right, we really do have the authority to make that request an order. So - good-bye, we're shipping you out - to Pleasant Valley."  Once again I see myself the winner. I have spent some five years on a pleasant vacation from standard prison life. That was a wonderful break. Now I have to return to the duty I volunteered for some 8 years ago, regular California prison life.  This gives me a sense of de-ja-vu. I've been there before. Like when we had to leave the luxury of Shanghai and return to a life as a fighting Marine, a beach in the Philippines. That was the world I had signed up for. I couldn't complain.  They tell me I am ...."
  • "Hi! It's Tuesday morning now in Pleasant Valley (wherever that is). The good news is I once again have my word processor and am in a two man cell with a desk. The bad news is that CMC finally called my bluff. "You are the first inmate in all these years we couldn't trick into volunteering to leave. But you were right, we really do have the authority to make that request an order. So - good-bye, we're shipping you out - to Pleasant Valley."  Once again I see myself the winner. I have spent some five years on a pleasant vacation from standard prison life. That was a wonderful break. Now I have to return to the duty I volunteered for some 8 years ago, regular California prison life.  This gives me a sense of de-ja-vu. I've been there before. Like when we had to leave the luxury of Shanghai and return to a life as a fighting Marine, a beach in the Philippines. That was the world I had signed up for. I couldn't complain.  They tell me I am ...."

  • In the summer of 1965, Marine PFC Robert (Bobby) Garwood was 19 years old and served as a staff driver for the G-2 Intelligence section of the Third Marine Division in DaNang, South Vietnam.  On September 28, Bobby had just 10 more days to serve to complete his tour in Vietnam. Late that afternoon, he was ordered to drive out alone to China Beach and pick up an officer, but he couldn't find the officer and night was falling.  As he was deciding to return to the Base, he found himself surrounded by about 30 armed Viet Cong guerrillas.  He jumped to the ground, drew his .45 automatic pistol and fired twice into the advancing circle of VC. He shot one square in the face, killing him instantly. A bullet ripped clean through his right forearm between the bones.  The VC swarmed him, seized his pistol, took off his boots and stripped him down to his skivies.  Garwood went into shock as they tied his elbows tightly together behind his back.  They looped the rope around his neck and back down between his elbows. Next they stuck a stout bamboo pole through the crook in his bound elbows and across his back.  When he came out of shock, his forearm began to throb with intense pain. In the struggle, the bullet hole through his arm had become almost completely packed with sand and dirt. His wound was left to fester untreated in this filthy condition for the next three days.  Garwood expected to be executed at any moment. Instead, they blindfolded him and led him off into the night. One VC always held the end of the rope around his neck....
  • In the summer of 1965, Marine PFC Robert (Bobby) Garwood was 19 years old and served as a staff driver for the G-2 Intelligence section of the Third Marine Division in DaNang, South Vietnam.  On September 28, Bobby had just 10 more days to serve to complete his tour in Vietnam. Late that afternoon, he was ordered to drive out alone to China Beach and pick up an officer, but he couldn't find the officer and night was falling.  As he was deciding to return to the Base, he found himself surrounded by about 30 armed Viet Cong guerrillas.  He jumped to the ground, drew his .45 automatic pistol and fired twice into the advancing circle of VC. He shot one square in the face, killing him instantly. A bullet ripped clean through his right forearm between the bones.  The VC swarmed him, seized his pistol, took off his boots and stripped him down to his skivies.  Garwood went into shock as they tied his elbows tightly together behind his back.  They looped the rope around his neck and back down between his elbows. Next they stuck a stout bamboo pole through the crook in his bound elbows and across his back.  When he came out of shock, his forearm began to throb with intense pain. In the struggle, the bullet hole through his arm had become almost completely packed with sand and dirt. His wound was left to fester untreated in this filthy condition for the next three days.  Garwood expected to be executed at any moment. Instead, they blindfolded him and led him off into the night. One VC always held the end of the rope around his neck....
1 - 20 of 24 Next ›
20 items/page

Diigo is about better ways to research, share and collaborate on information. Learn more »

Join Diigo