Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The New Yorker, Orphans of Jonestown, by Lawrence Wright,

November 22, 1993, The New Yorker, Orphans of Jonestown, by Lawrence Wright,

A sick, sly and satanic excursion into a very poor expression of brotherly love.
Come on guys. Under the circumstances you should want to put on a more tasteful display. But non one ever accused you of being a class act. 

At least we didn't have to read a 50,000 word essay on Norwegian cheese--the usual sort of The New Yorker fare.

"Among the people most haunted by the sight of the children leaving the compound near Waco were the sons of Jim Jones. Fifteen years ago, when they left Jonestown to play in a basketball tournament, their father ordered the deaths of everyone they knew and loved, leaving them alone in a society uncomprehending of their experience."
Their father ordered their deaths too, but they disobeyed. Bad Jones boys!
"wave upon wave of corpses, toppled and heaped in a fan-shaped formation"
Sure sounds like an aerosol poison killed them.
"Eighty-four other people survived Jonestown, including three sons of Jim Jones."

Actually, it was four sons of Jim Jones who survived.
Not a word mentioned of the three months Stephen was incarcerated for his blythe, sarcastic admission that he indeed was the one who slaughtered Susan Amos and her three children with a knife in the bafroom. And "Waco" brought it all back home for them did it?

Ryan became only the second United States congressman in history to be assassinated.

Ryan lived on in secret retirement. As did the newsmen. Only the unconnected died.

Three reporters and one defector from the Temple were also shot to death that day by Temple loyalists
The three sons--Stephen, nineteen; Tim, nineteen; and Jim, Jr., eighteen---were in Georgetown, Guyana's capital city, having played in a basketball tournament there.
On the 12th and 15th, losing by 30 points and 20 points, not that Mr. Wright thinks it pertinent. 

For the past fifteen years, Stephen and his brothers have lived in relative anonymity in the Bay area. They have never wanted to revisit the tragedy of Jonestown in any public way. Yet they agreed to speak about their shared past when I sought them out after the burning of the Waco compound.

Designed to be "a utopia of 'apostolic socialism and racial justice," Jonestown stood for less than two years (When 17-year-old Stephen Jones arrived in February 1977, a six-mile long road had just been cut through the jungle from the airport to the leased site.)

clearing brush was formidable work, especially  cutting the hardwoods, which were so dense that they could deflrct an iron axehead. They left the fallen trees to dry for months, then ran through in teams of two, one bot carrying kerosene and the other a torch, and set fire to huge swaths of brush. "We howled at the top of our lungs, pouring kerosene and lighting fires," Stephen remembers. "It was quite a romp." Ahead of them would be a rush of wildlife---iguanas, monkeys, lizards. The ruined forest would burn for days, and while it bwas still smoldering Stephen and two other colonists would come in with bulldozers and push the embers into ravines. They loved to do this work at night: when the coals hit the bottom of a ravine there would be an explosion of sparks...In this fashion they cleared three hundred acres

Jones, who worried obsessively about his own safety, amde Tim and Jimmy his top lieutenants on the security squad. In that capacity, they were feared and also envied bu others in the Temple. "We were the Gestapo, the elite, and we treated ourselves that way," Jimm y admits.
His ministry soon specialized in services that were underwritten by the welfare system---it operated a ranch for mentally handicapped boys, nine convalescent-nursing homes for the elderly, a day-care center, and six homes for foster children--and gained a reputation for providing honest and excellent service in an industry rife with abuse and profiteering.

Using bark reeds, and native lumber that they milled on the site, they built a handsome and well-planned village. There were sixty cottages, designed to house eight people each; a huge communal kitchen and pantry, and drying sheds for food; an infirmary and drug dispensary; an office; a laundry; five single-sex dormitories, each occupying about a thousand square feet; two large wooden cabins, to house Jones and his mistresses; two long school buildings, with canvas roofs; showers and toilets; a nursery and a pre-school; and a radio room, for communicating with Temple headquarters, which remained in San Fransisco.

Jim Jones' adopted Korean son Lew, and his wife Terri

Tim Jones, his wife, a black woman named Sandy Cobb

Jim Jr. (Jimmy) a 16-year-old black youth whom Jones had adopted as a baby

The natives regarded the tree boa as the deadliest creature in the jungle, but Stephen knew that it wasn't poisonous. He liked to walk through the bush with one of the magnificently colored snakes coiled around him, "When the natives saw that, they freaked out," he calls. "They thought I was some kind of demon."

Ramona (Mona) Lamothe YOUNG

Birth Mother Christine Cobb aka Elois Christine Young, Elois Christine Cobb (stepmother)

Birth Father Guy Young

Stephanie Brown aka Stephanie Jamelle Morgan; 
Marchelle Jacole Jones, 
Monyelle Maylene Jones

James Cobb, Jr.;
Teresa Ann Cobb;
Ava Phenice Jones, aka Ava Phenice Brown,
Ava Phenice Cobb;
Brenda Carole Cobb,
Joel Raymond Cobb,
Johnny Cobb aka John Raphael Cobb, 
John Cobb Jones;
Sandra (Sandy) Yvette Cobb Jones, aka Sandra (Sandy) Yvette Cobb

Mother: Christine COBB
Elois Christine Young,
Elois Christine Cobb

James Cobb, Jr.; 
Teresa Ann Cobb; 
Ava Phenice Jones, aka Ava Phenice Brown, 
Ava Phenice Cobb; 
Brenda Carole Cobb, 
Joel Raymond Cobb, 
Johnny Cobb aka John Raphael Cobb, 
John Cobb Jones; 
Sandra (Sandy) Yvette Cobb Jones, aka Sandra (Sandy) Yvette Cobb; 
Ramona (Mona) Lamothe Young, aka Mona Cobb, 
Ramona Lamothe; 

Stephanie Brown aka Stephanie Jamelle Morgan; 
Marchelle Jacole Jones, 
Monyelle Maylene Jones

Find a Grave: Monyelle Maylene Jones
Birth: Feb. 14, 1978
Jonestown, GuyanaDeath: Nov. 18, 1978
Jonestown, Guyana
She was born and died in Jonestown, Guyana with her twin sister. She lived in Dorm 3 in Jonestown, Guyana. 
Adopted Daughter of Sandy Cobb, aka Sandra Yvette Cobb, Sandy Jones, Sharon Rose Swaney and Timothy Tupper aka Timothy Glenn Tupper Jones, Tim "Day" Jones. Twin sister of Marchelle Jacole Jones (twin, adopted by Ava Brown aka Ava Phenice Jones, Ava Cobb & Johnny Jones, aka Johnny Moss Brown, Jr.)
Family links:
Sandy Yvette Cobb (1956 - 1978)

Find A Grave: Christine Cobb
Birth: Mar. 29, 1928, Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana, USA
Death: Nov. 18, 1978, Jonestown, Guyana

Also known as Elois Christine Young and Elois Christine Cobb. She lived in San Francisco, California before moving to Jonestown, Guyana where she lived in Cottage 43. She was employed as a LVN (Medical) and Physician's Technician. She entered Guyana on March 2, 1978. She was employed on the Jonestown Medical staff and Judicial council.

Former Partner of Jim Cobb Sr.; Partner of Guy Young. 

Mother of 
Ava Brown aka Ava Phenice Jones, 
Ava Cobb; 
Brenda Carole Cobb, 
Joel Raymond Cobb; 
Johnny Cobb aka John Raphael Cobb, 
John Cobb Jones; 
Sandy Cobb, aka Sandra Yvette Cobb, 
Sandy Jones, 
Sharon Rose Swaney; 
Mona Young aka Ramona Lamotha, 
Mona Cobb; 
Jim Cobb (a prominent defector and critic of the People's Temple); and 
Terri Cobb. 

PT occupation list says birthyear is 1950. Her son, Jim Cobb Jr., had visited Jonestown on November 17-18, 1978 with Congressman Leo Ryan and the press without taking any family members. He survived the shooting at the Port Kaituma airstrip. He was hoping to convince his mother and siblings to return home to California. He left alone from the compound.

Family links:
Ava Cobb Brown (1951 - 1978)*
Sandy Yvette Cobb (1956 - 1978)*
Brenda Carole Cobb (1963 - 1978)*
Joel Raymond Cobb (1965 - 1978)*
Mona Young (1970 - 1978)*

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