Friday, December 31, 2021

January need exact date

Rosael Rodriguez, age 27, died in January of 1986 after an abortion performed by Angel Acevado Montalvo in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

The only information I had been able to gather on Rosael comes from pro-life web sites and the Social Security Death RecordsPriests for Life posts a list of women who have died from legal abortions, including Rosael Rodriguez, who died in January of 1986 at the age of 27, according to Social Security. She had been born on April 2, 1958. Priests for Life cite a March 5, 1992 article in the Virgin Islands Daily News.

Human Life International mentions that abortionist Angel Acevado Montalvo was charged with manslaughter in two cases of maternal deaths from safe, legal abortion.

HLI also notes that after his conviction, Montalvo went right back to business doing abortions.
Priests for Life also cites one other death, that of Diane Adams, from that article. 

I finally found a United Press International snippet, published in the York Dispatch, noting that Montalvo had performed the abortion knowing that Rosael had only believed herself to be pregnant.


New Year's Eve: Bleeding Teen Shoved Out the Door to Die

Eighteen-year-old Sylvia Jane Moore underwent a safe and legal abortion at the hands of 50-year-old Arnold Bickham on December 31, 1986 at his Urgent Medical Care Clinic in Chicago. She was in the second trimester of her pregnancy, but Bickham used a suction technique suitable for a first-trimester pregnancy. 
After the abortion, 48-year-old Bickham gave Sylvia repeated injections of Demerol because she was reporting severe abdominal cramps.

According to her mother, Sylvia was bleeding, weak, incoherent, and unable to walk after five hours at the clinic. Bickham tried several times to lift Sylvia to her feet, but she repeatedly collapsed. Bickham called her "lazy," put her in a wheelchair, and physically ejected her from his Chicago clinic. 

Sylvia's mother took her to Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center, where staff tried in vain to save the young woman, who had arrived with no pulse and no blood pressure. An emergency hysterectomy was done to remove her lacerated uterus, which still had a plastic instrument embedded in a 6.5 cm laceration. Sylvia also had a 2.2 cm laceration of her vagina. Despite the surgery, she bled to death.

Bickham claimed that he "didn't think there was anything wrong" with Sylvia, and said that he'd merely been helping her with the wheelchair. He could not explain why he didn't think there was anything wrong with a patient so weak that she couldn't walk out to the car.

He blamed Sylvia's death on the hospital, saying, "They were successful in repairing the damage done in the abortion, but in doing that, they perforated an artery causing there to be blood loss in the chest cavity. 

The autopsy report, however, noted the chest tube incision but noted "lungs are well expanded and the pleural cavities are free of fluid and adhesions." An attorney with the Department of Professional Regulation said, "This patient should never have been allowed to leave Bickham's clinic with her mother. She should have left in an ambulance."

The postmortem report said: "The circumstances of injury, review of the Medical records, the findings at autopsy examination, and subsequent investigation of the circumstances of the case provide evidence of gross negligence and abandonment on the part of the original treating physician. In consideration of the above, the manner of death is determined to be Homicide."

No charges were pressed against Bickham. His attorney claimed that the actions against Bickham were a racist witch hunt, saying, "He's a black man who did an abortion and he's an ex-felon. That's strike one, two, and three."

The suit filed by Sylvia's survivors noted that Bickham had failed to perform an ultrasound, and failed to have adequate staff or equipment. The specimen of abortion tissue sent from clinic contained segments of placental tissue, umbilical cord, and fetal intestinal parts and liver.

Sylvia left one child motherless.

Bickham's license was revoked by Illinois in October of 1988 due to Sylvia's death. The medical board had concluded that Bickham had performed the abortion "without adequate support staff and emergency equipment, and failed to recognize symptoms of abdominal bleeding...." He was arrested in September of 1989 for practicing medicine without license, and sentenced to 30 months probation and 2,600 hours of community service in lieu of 6 months jail, in addition to a $10,000 fine. 

Sylvia's mother found his punishment far too lenient. "I don't want to see this happen to any other mother."

Bickham had been a prolific abortionist, and in 1974 had been the highest-paid doctor in the country's Medicaid program, with total reimbursements of $192,266 (over $4 million in 2020 dollars). His medical license had been put on probation in 1979 after he had been caught performing abortions on women who had not actually been pregnant. That same year he was sentenced to two years in federal prison for defrauding the government out of job training funds.

Fortunately, Bickham eventually hung up his canula. On the downside, he became a pubic school administrator, still in a position where his poor judgment might cause harm but at least not death to any more children or young women. 

Newly added sources:

Thursday, December 30, 2021

December 30: Retroactively Safe and Legal

"Sophia," age 19, traveled from Youngstown, Ohio, to Duquesne, near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on December 27, 1967 to have an abortion performed by 50-year-old Dr. Benjamin King. King also had medical offices in both McKeesport and Homestead.

Sophia was a 19-year-old freshman at Ohio State University. She had gotten King's contact information from her boyfriend, who was also 19 years old. King put out word about his services on college campuses in Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Sophia's boyfriend accompanied her to King's office. They made a down payment of $110 toward the $300 fee for the abortion. (That's over $2,000 in 2020 dollars.) The young couple returned to Youngstown, where Sophia was admitted to South Side Hospital on December 29. She died the following day. King had perforated her cervix, causing both infection and hemorrhage.

Police had Sophia's boyfriend contact King, saying he had the rest of the money. When King came to collect, he was arrested. 

Consistently In Trouble

While awaiting sentencing for Sophia's death, King was sentenced to 90 days for trafficking in amphetamines.

King insisted that while he had indeed seen Sophia, he had only examined her and had only been paid $20. He remained free on a $5,000 bond during the trial. A jury deliberated for 1 1/2 hours before finding King guilty. He was remanded to jail to await sentencing pending a $100,000 bond. The judge justified the high amount on the grounds that King had previously been convicted of an abortion charge after a 26-year-old patient had to be hospitalized in February of 1966. King also had another abortion charge pending against him. 

Convictions and Sentences

King was sentenced to 1 to 3 years in Western Penitentiary for the 1966 charge. In passing sentence, Judge David Olbum told King, "If abortion laws were repealed tomorrow, you would not be qualified to perform abortions." The judge asserted that King "had run an abortion mill for years and years." King's wife, 46-year-old Regina B. King, was charged with being an accessory before the fact and sentenced to three years of probation. I haven't been able to determine how long the sentence was for Sophia's death.

King's attorney said that King only perpetrated abortions because of his "compassionate nature" and not to profit. The Pittsburgh Courier described King as a "well-known Western Pennsylvania physician, an former high school and college star quarterback."

Though convicted and sentenced to prison, King won his freedom in March of 1973 by citing the Roe vs. Wade decision striking down the abortion law.

Sources:


Wednesday, December 29, 2021

December 29: Legal, Antiquated, Deadly

"Beth" was 23 years old when she traveled from Massachusetts to take advantage of New York's liberalized abortion law in 1971. Beth's doctor chose saline abortion, which is performed by injecting a strong salt solution into the amniotic fluid. The fetus inhales and swallows the fluid, which causes massive internal bleeding and death. The woman then goes into labor. 

The abortion was initiated by injecting saline into Beth's uterus. But instead of the amniotic sac, the saline went into Beth's bloodstream. Beth immediately began to have seizures and went into a coma. She was pronounced dead on December 29, 1971.

December 29: Safe and Legal in Cleveland

Mary Ann Page was 36 years old when she went into cardiac arrest during an abortion/tubal ligation performed under general anesthesia on December 28, 1977. Both procedures were completed, then Mary Ann was taken to the Intensive Care Unit at St. Luke's Hospital in Cleveland. Mary Ann suffered several more cardiac arrests while she was in the ICU. She was pronounced dead on December 29, 1977.




December 29: Safe and Legal in Houston

On December 29, 1987, 31-year-old Sheila Watley had a safe, legal abortion at Concerned Women's Center in Houston, Texas. She was 17 weeks pregnant, and had one child. The abortion was performed by Dr. Richard Cunningham. About four minutes into the procedure, Sheila went into cardio-respiratory arrest. She was pronounced dead later that day. The cause of death was listed as an amniotic fluid embolism, which is when fluid from the uterus gets into the woman's blood stream. From a search on information about Cunningham's license, a lawsuit was filed against him that might have pertained to Sheila's death; the case in question was dismissed, according to information Cunningham gave the Texas medical board. 

December 29: Fatal Abortion Drugs from Planned Parenthood

Hoa Thuy "Vivian" Tran, like Holly Patterson, got abortion drugs at a Planned Parenthood. Vivian was 22 years old, and died December 29, 2003, six days into the abortion process. She‘d been given the drugs on December 23 at the Costa Mesa Planned Parenthood facility. The autopsy showed that she died of sepsis. 

Vivian‘s husband is suing the drug company, Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernadino Counties, and The Population Council Inc., in Orange County Superior Court. 

Costa Mesa Planned Parenthood
Planned Parenthood spokesperson Kimberlee Ward said that the organization has "absolute confidence in this method of abortion," which is hardly surprising. After all, Vivian‘s fetus died, leaving PP with nothing to complain about. 

Other women identified as having died of infection deaths after RU-486 deaths in the Los Angeles area: Chanelle Bryant, and Oriane Shevin. Chanelle got her abortion drugs at a Planned Parenthood, and Oriane and Vivian got theirs from National Abortion Federation members.


Tuesday, December 28, 2021

December 28: A Self-Induced Abortion in Vermont

 According to Vermont death records, 24-year-old Alice E. Kendall of Baltimore, Vermont, attempted to perform an abortion on herself using a catheter in the winter of 1931.

Alice developed peritonitis, went into septic shock, and died on December 28.



Monday, December 27, 2021

December 27, 1985: Illegal Abortion Kills Teen


Arnetta Hardaway was 18 years old when she had an abortion performed by Dr. George Tucker in Atlanta on December 23, 1985.

Arnetta continued to bleed, and developed infection, after her abortion. On December 27, she died from infection and hemorrhage, according to the medical examiner. 

Tucker was investigated by the medical board for failure to meet minimal standards of care, and was indicted for performing an illegal third-trimester abortion. At the time of Arnetta's abortion, Georgia law required that second-trimester abortions be performed in hospitals and third trimester abortions were only allowed for purported danger to the mother's life. (A third-trimester life-of-the-mother abortion is nonsensical on its face, since nobody would reasonably think that the mother would benefit medically from additional steps taken to ensure a dead baby prior to ending the pregnancy safely for the woman.) District Attorney Lewis Slaton characterized Arnetta's abortion as "way late."

Tucker had an active medical board order on his license as of January 4, 2002. The Georgia medical board web site does not reveal the details of the order.

Sources:

Watch Not So Legal After All on YouTube.

Friday, December 24, 2021

The Macabre Christmas Eve Death of Jacqueline Smith

Jacqueline "Jackie" Smith
Over the years, many details of the Jacqueline Smith case have been lost, and the remaining story often is dismissed as an urban legend. But strange and macabre as the story is, it was all too true.

Jackie Smith, age 20, was a slender, brown-eyed blond from Lebanon, Pennsylvania. Over the protests of her father, 41-year-old Chester Smith, and her mother, Josephine, Jackie moved to New York and took an apartment with two other women early in 1955. She wanted to pursue a career as a fashion designer.

That June, friends introduced the soft-spoken, demure Jacqueline to Thomas G. Daniel, an urbane young salesman of 24. Daniel was well-read, multi-lingual, a poet and gourmet cook. Young man had come to New York from Warren, Ohio, three years earlier. He worked at an upscale shop selling riding equipment. With his good looks and sophistication, he was able to win over the small-town girl. She spent more and more time at his apartment, all but moving in with him.

Tom Daniel

Jackie's hometown paper, the Lebanon Daily News, looked into the background of the young man whose attentions turned fatal for their local girl. They sent reporters to Warren, Ohio, to speak to people who knew him.

Warren was a small city of about 50,000, but it outstripped tiny Lebanon, PA, with it's 1950 population just topping 28,000.

Daniel was the only child of Greek immigrants. His parents moved from Weirton, West Virginia, to Warren in 1937. His father committed suicide in 1953. Tom appeared to be quite devoted to his widowed mother, Catherine. He was described as quiet and studious. He graduated from Warren High School in 1948 and attended Kent State University. He was expelled for poor grades but returned with a renewed focus and was able to graduate. He took up weight lifting and body building in college. During summer vacations he worked at a Warren steel fabricating plant, though he did not stand out there in any way. 

Daniel joined the Army in 1952 and served two years with the occupation forces in Germany. Shortly after returning from his stint in the Army he decided to head to New York.

Though Catherine Daniel had not been officially notified that her son was in trouble, she learned about it through news coverage. She left Warren on January 11 and traveled to Baltimore, where relatives joined her for the journey to New York. 

"He's a good boy," Catherine Daniel told reporters. "He wouldn't hurt anybody."



In December, Jacqueline told Daniel that she was pregnant. Daniels did not want to marry Jacqueline. He preferred the company of his girlfriend back in Ohio. Instead he arranged for a 46-year-old scrub nurse, Leobaldo Pejuan, to perform an abortion at Daniel's apartment on Christmas Eve. After performing the abortion, Pejuan became alarmed at the young woman's condition, and summoned Dr. Ramiro Morales, who told him that Jackie was dead.

Daniel and Pejuan cut Jacqueline's body into pieces and took it to Pejuan's home, where over the next several days they cut into as many as 50 pieces, which they wrapped in Christmas paper and disposed of in trash cans along side streets off Broadway, from 72nd to 80th.

When Chester Smith arrived for a visit on December 30, he got Daniel and together they went to the police to report Jackie missing. The police were quickly suspicious of Daniel and began to question him more closely. Daniel finally told police that Jacqueline had gone into the bathroom and stabbed herself to death due to his refusal to marry her, and that he had dumped her body in the Hudson River.

Police investigated, and found over 800 stolen medical instruments in Pejuan's apartment. The entire story eventually came out, with Pejuan pleading guilty and testifying against Daniel. 

Trying the pair would be tricky. Though prosecutors had not body of a victim, they had the corpus delicti -- the body of the crime. Witnesses' accounts, the abortion instruments, Jackie's possessions, and the confessions of the two principles added up to significant proof of Jackie's death for prosecutors to proceed.

Daniel's widowed mother attended the entire trial. Chester Smith, too, was there, but left the courtroom when testimony came to describing the dismemberment of his daughter's body.

Pejuan was sentenced to 7 1/2 years in prison, and Daniel was sentenced to 8 years. His mother went into hysterics upon hearing the verdict, screaming, "God help me. They have taken my life, my savings, my son."

Nobody recorded the words of Jacqueline's father as he faced a life without his daughter.

The newspaper in Jackie's home town of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, covered Jackie's life and death, and the trial, extensively. Those photos and the information they share are available here.

Sources:





Jacqueline Smith Photo Album

Jackie Smith's hometown paper covered the story of her life, her disappearance, the discovery of her criminal abortion death, and the resulting trial in excruciating detail. Here are many photos, along with details about Jackie.

When word first arose of the young woman's disappearance, her high school English teacher, Joan Nichols, asked the class to pray for Jackie.

 Miss Nichols found Jackie to be "well-liked" and "even tempered" and as the best dressed girl in her class. 

After Jackie had moved away, Miss Nichols even contacted her in New York and asked her to produce a series of illustrations of various figures of speech for a Shakespeare class. Jackie sent her former teacher a series of posters.

Jackie also sent Miss Nichols a letter in which she said:

Don't ask me how, but some way I found time to read a book I know you would enjoy if you haven't already read it -- 'A Man Called Peter,' about Peter Marshall, chaplain of the Senate until his death several years ago, written by his widow. Many of his sermons and prayers are in the book, and I found them very inspiring. I have never been a regular church goer, but up hear I have started -- rather odd, I suppose, since you usually associate New York City with quite different ways. ....

You wouldn't recognize me today. I got a short haircut. It gets so dirty around the city, and mine was too long to bother with (there goes my English again).

Jackie's art teacher, Julia Weirman, found Jackie to be clever and imaginative. She had recommended Jackie to the local Textile Printing and Finishing Company for a job. Jackie's boss there was pleased with the referral. Jackie had prepared textile designs for the company for about a year and a half after she graduated. "She was a nice, quiet girl. I can only say good of her. None come better," he told the Lebanon Daily News.


Jackie was very active in her high school. She was a member of the poetry club, posed as a model for art class, and participated in the school fashion show. She was a member of the Student Senate.

Jackie was known for being fashionable, poised, and ambitious. She was also characterized as quiet and reserved. She had no close friends and never dated.

Jackie's hometown newspaper shared three poems she had published in What Hath Thought Wrought?, the annual publication of the school's Pegasus poetry club.

Mental Meandering

With spring that compelling urge comes back
To stray far away from my native lair,
To hear a train skim over a track,
Or the whir of propellors slicing the air.

To cross the seas on an ocean liner,
To London, Paris, Lisbon and Rome;
Right now I can't think of anything finer
Than going as far as I can from my home.

The lure of the unknown has my hand,
The unknown, as full of mystery,
Strange people in a distant land,
About which I read in history.

Oh well, I know these dreams will be past,
And I'll be content to loll on a beach
When spring to summer turns at last
And I I want is within my reach.

Ode To a TV Set

TV, you wicked little monster,
You try so hard to be a funster.
People once passed the time of day
With books and records, work and play;
But since you've taken over the house
I must be quieter than a mouse.
My, I wonder how the daylight looks
And if publishers still print in books.
Because of you I've lost all my friends;
I watch Berle, who to culture nothing lends.
TV, from your silly witticisms,
From puppets and movies, I can't tear away --
You little monster, you're here to stay.

From a Flat-Footed Fullback

Will you love me and remember
In the merry month of May
As you did darling in November
When I ran that touchdown play?
Or have you already forgotten the story?
Is your fancy about to swing -- 
To the dope who wins the glory
At the track meets in the spring?

Jackie lived with her parents, Chester and Josephine, in an apartment at the corner of Ninth St. and Walter St. in Lebanon, Pennsylvania. Her father spoke proudly of how she was saving her money from her job to pay for art school. Jackie's uncle, Carl Gable, said, "She really had a wonderful family life. Their life was completely wrapped up in Jackie. I always said she was the only one who could go to high school in a cashmere sweater."

Since childhood Jackie had collected dolls, leaving the collection in her parents' care when she went to New York. She had always planned to be an artist, and her parents saved all of her artwork, from her first crayon drawings to her mature works. 

After Jackie went to New York to attend art school, her parents bought a small ranch home with the idea that Jackie would move back home and work locally. Chester Smith visited Jackie often in New York. She was planning to marry her new love, Tom Daniel. Jackie bought utensils and other household goods for a "hope chest" in anticipation of setting up a home with Daniel. Chester would bring the items home and stash them for his daughter.

Jackie's uncle said that Chester and XXX  invited him to join Jackie in a Christmas visit home. Jackie, they said, wrote back to say that she and Tom had made other plans but hoped that her parents could join them in New York after the holidays.

Jackie's mother faced an additional tragedy in the death of her father, John Gable, shortly after Jackie's death. She was so distraught that she was unable to attend her father's viewing or funeral. 

The family doctor, Harold Krohn, made house calls to the Smith home. He cared for Mrs. Smith, who was kept sedated in her bed.

When leaving for New York to follow the investigation into his daughter's death, Chester Smith reached out to Rev. Alden G. Biely, pastor of the Hebron EUB Church where Jackie's family sometimes attended. At Chester's request, Rev. Biely and his wife, looked after the distraught Mrs. Smith. The couple stayed at the Smith home while Chester was away.

















Sources:


Thursday, December 23, 2021

December 23: Failed Attempt at Self-Induced Abortion Kills Vermont Woman

According to Vermont death records, Fern E. Titus, nee Knapp, attempted a self-induced abortion on December 21, 1951. This triggered methemoglobinemia but evidently failed to kill the fetus. Fern was pronounced dead on arrival at Mary Fletcher Hospital in Burlington on December 23.



December 23: The Body in the Woods

Gruesome Discovery

On Christmas day of 1934, the nude body of a young woman was found "[s]tretched beneath of coverlet of Autumn leaves on an ash-strewn dumping ground" in a thicket near a highway near Patchogue, Long Island, south of New York City. The area was strewn with junk and trash. 

Somehow the young woman's body had been spotted by two truck drivers.

The young woman was estimated to have been dead between 12 and 24 hours. According to the New York Daily News, "State troopers and county authorities investigating the death believe[d] the young woman was the victim of a medical quack or a moral degenerate."

Eventually the date of death was determined to have been December 23.

Identification

Laura and Joseph Devine, whose 19-year-old daughter, Loretta Wilson, had been missing since December 19, contacted authorities. Along with Loretta's 23-year-old sister, who accompanied them to the morgue, they were able to positively identify the body. 

An autopsy revealed that she had bled to death from complications of "the performance of a homicidal criminal operation." Loretta had been about three months pregnant.

The Husband Confesses
 
William Wilson 
Loretta's husband, William Wilson, eventually confessed to police. Loretta had left home at noon on the 19th, telling the landlady that she was going to see a doctor. Though initially he'd denied even knowing that Loretta had been pregnant, he later said he'd paid Dr. John Henry Becker Jr. of Queens, NY, age 52, $55 for the abortion. That's a little over $1,000 in 2020 dollars and was quite a windfall to Becker, whose weekly income was typically about $45. 

He added that his wife's friend, Kay Dinger, had been present when the transaction took place.

William, whose profession is alternatively given as a chauffeur and a truck driver, had come home from work on December 19 to find Loretta not home. He assumed that she had gone to Becker for the abortion since he'd made the appointment for the 19th. He went to Becker's office and learned that she wasn't there, and the next day he reported her missing.

Oil Contractor Identifies Becker

Harold Gibson, an oil contractor from Bay Shore, Suffolk, told police that he had seen a man trying to hide behind a parked car near the dump site. He picked Becker out of a police line-up.

Becker's Denial Fails

Becker asserted that Loretta had come to his office on December 17 at 8:00 in the evening, accompanied by her husband and a young woman named Mrs. Adeline Royall. "Mrs. Wilson told me she was going to have a baby and was afraid she was suffering with kidney trouble and should not have it. I examined her, found her condition to be as she described and told her to return December 19 for treatment." He had charged $2 for the examination.

The trio then left together, Becker said. Becker said that Loretta never showed up for her follow-up appointment. 

Police searched Becker's home but found no evidence of abortion instruments. 

During a three-day trial, Becker steadfastly maintained his innocence and never changed his story even under intense cross-examination. In the end he was found guilty. On June 21, 1935 he was sentenced to between 18 months and three years in Sing-Sing.

One more note: Loretta's abortion was typical of pre-Roe abortions in that it was performed by a physician

Sources:

Watch The Body in the Woods on YouTube. 






Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Call for information

Life Dynamics lists these women as abortion deaths, but I have been unable to verify their death information. I have narrowed down race, age, and place and date of death as much as possible. Please let me know if you have further information.

Rosalyn Joy, age c. 31, Black; Tennessee; March, 1987

Betty Moon, age 27, non-white; Elyria, Ohio; June, 1978

Angela Reynolds, New Jersey; September, 1985

Jacqueline Reynolds, age 22, Black, Fulton County, Georgia; September 5, 1986

Mary Tennyson, age 20, Black, Richmond County, Georgia; January 21, 1982

Adrienne Williams, age c. 25, Pennsylvania; March, 1986

Sandra Williams, age c. 41, Georgia; April 1, 1984

Shirley Williams, age 40, Black; Glynn County, Georgia; March 6, 1980



New to me: Anesthesia Death on May 18, 2001

Dr. Ronald Blatt
Cynthia Quintana-Morales, a healthy 30-year-old mother of two, entrusted herself to the care of Dr. Ronald D. Blatt at Eastside Gynecology. She reported for her abortion appointment on May 7, 2001.

The facility administered Brevital to sedate Cynthia, and she went into cardiac arrest. She was transported to Lennox Hill Hospital, where she died of anoxic encephalopathy on May 18. She left a 16-year-old son and a 10-year-old daughter motherless.

Cynthia's husband of ten years, Andrew, sued Blatt and the practice, citing failing to use reasonable care, neglecting to heed Cynthia's condition, departing from accepted practices, performing contraindicated procedures, and lack of informed consent. Andrew asserted that his wife never would have consented to the abortion had she been adequately informed of the specific risks to her.

Blatt promptly closed the practice and reopened it as East Side Gynecology Services, effectively protecting his practice from financial liability.

Cynthia's husband settled with Blatt on March 30, 2008 for $1.25 million. Blatt's insurance covered the settlement.

Thanks to Operation Rescue for these sources: