Monday, June 22, 2020

Dump location of Shorty's Car

This is where Shorty's 1962 Mercury Comet was found - 8864 Independence Ave. The top photo is the Canoga Park location  today, and below is the same spot in 1969 where Gypsy left it.




Donald Shea's 1962 Merc 




Thanks, Surf-Bat



55 comments:

AstroCreep said...

I find it very sad that Shorty was reduced to his abandoned car and the contents there of. I imagine there was a time when he was in his prime, movies were steady work, and he was well known in that on-set community. It’s a shame he didn’t have a proper send off during those times. Also a shame that a bunch of dirty hippie rejects drug him into a ravine after carving him up and left him there with send off less than what’s acceptable for a pet. When people argue about family members involvement with one crime or another, it’s the totality of their actions that will keep them in jail where they will never see freedom outside until they’re in a box. Like it or not, those are their collective actions. Then, they all giggled and made fun of the process, the crimes, and the victims. Own your shit for once.

Matt said...

Astro, not to mention he rests in a potter's field. If it weren't for Scott Michaels he wouldn't even have a marker.


The Surf Bat said...

Agreed, AstroCreep. And several who murdered him never even got charged.

Gorodish said...

The Surf Bat typed:

Agreed, AstroCreep. And several who murdered him never even got charged.

Tex(the main stabber), Vance, Bailey/Giddings; and what the mob calls "the cleaners": Leslie, Gypsy, Sadie, Pitman, and God knows who else.....

ColScott said...

OFFTOPIC : Vera's celebrated Assclown, Maury Terry, I mean Tom O'Neill will be doing an AMA tomorrow at 10 am PST https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/


Somebody can AMA him why he waited till everyone was dead and couldn't defend themselves. Also what plankton Orca Tate prefers

AstroCreep said...

Don’t sugarcoat it, Col. Tell us what you really think!

Fayez Abedaziz said...

Catherine Share, you know, you: "Vos Beaux Yeuz et Cheveux"

Gypsy, what a nice name, somewhat exotic and fitting for dearheart Catherine.
Did Catherine drive that car to Topanga?
And, did she then proceed to run afoul of the law, here and there, yeah, I guess she did.
Yet, when I knew of her past, of her being born in the great culture rich nation of France, well, one would be understood with a nod of the head, if a tear or two fell.
I really felt sorrow as to what she had been through, such as her parents death because of the murderous occupying nazi forces.
Then, in the U.S. here, one of her adopted parents died,that and more is known to most of you. Still, it's a wonder Catherine was even able to function and smile, as she continued to do. There's story behind every one, by the time they're twenty or so.
The mystery as to why she would drive Shea's car and to continue to be with the 'family,' as it were, can be a long story right?
There is so much irony in so many events from 1967 at the Haight, to Topanga, Spahn
Town, to Barker to being guests of the California hospitality system. (three meals and a cot)
Catherine's parents didn't deserve to die, yet Shea didn't either and the stories go on and on.
As another thought comes up, that is, like Catherine, I came, for the first time to the U.S. at the age of 7, Catherine at the age of 8. Her story is that of confusion, loss and so on. I mean, the changes she was put through, man I wish her the best in her life.
I think you can relate

cielodrivecom said...

Astro, Shorty definitely didn't deserve to die the way he did. But he also wasn't a great guy either.

AstroCreep said...

Cielo- I can totally appreciate that. One of the things that’s taken away from victims is their ability to make amends with those they’ve wronged. There’s likely a reason Shorty was working on the ranch in the state that it was in at that time. Not exactly a dream job but, still won’t ever justify getting carved up by those turds.

Matthew said...

Cielodrive.com said
Shorty definitely didn't deserve to die the way he did. But he also wasn't a great guy either

Could you elaborate on that? From what I have read, he was a hard working man and always had George Spahn's interests in mind. He worked long hours and if not working on a movie set was always at work. Just curious.

Matthew said...

I do remember reading somewhere that he did have a thing for underage girls and may have had a child with a 16 year old.

Dan S said...

I thought he was doing security for a prospective buyer of spahn or neighbor and that's where the friction came from.

DebS said...

Shorty did have a thing for young girls but when he learned they were pregnant, he married them, at least on two occasions. There was a 16 year old girl he got pregnant while in Texas and he did not marry her but it is unknown if he knew she was pregnant. He left Texas before she would have known she was pregnant.

Shorty also had financial difficulties and at the time of his death he owed a few people. This was like a revolving door for him, just as he was close to getting caught up he would borrow or pawn something. He hadn't had his own home paying for rent, utilities, groceries, etc.in a long time. He did a lot of couch surfing with friends.

Shorty was at Spahn at the time of his death because he had nowhere else to go. Spahn did not pay him, he couldn't afford it. No one got paid at Spahn except maybe Ruby Pearl. The ranch hands that weren't Family members just got a place to lay there head at night.

The morning he was killed Shorty was to have gone for an interview with Frank Retz but he never made it to the interview.

That said, Shorty did not deserve to die. Like Astro Creep said, Shorty's ability to make amends for his previous shortcomings was taken from him. He did have people who liked him and at the trials said he was a great guy, even the people he owed.

Monica said...

I keep looking for a "like" button on this blog. I would have certainly liked your comment, Deb. Having seen Shorty's place of rest and related locations (and read your book), it is heartbreaking that his life was taken from him like it was. Sometime people take a while to reach their prime, and he was so close.

The Surf Bat said...

Thanks Deb. GREAT info!

Panamint Patty said...

Monica I'm so glad you bought the purple mums that day

Matt said...

Matthew, you may have read that info here:

Get Shorty: The Tragic Tale of Don Shea


Matthew said...

Matt, that must be where I read that. I am still curious as to ciellodrive stating that he was not a great guy. I guess affairs with minors could be a good reason for being concidered not a great guy. But it was a different time. He did have trouble stay on top of his finances but always paid his debts. It also seems that everyone that met him only had good things to say about him. So I am wondering if there is something I am missing. I do have plans to read Deb S book and decide for myself whether he was a good guy or not.

Matthew said...

Of course, no matter what, he did not deserve to die the way he did.

Matt said...

Matthew, the word from the girls was that he was creepy. He on the one hand disliked the presence of the family, but constantly hit on the young ladies and said demeaning things to them. I think it's more a matter of personality dislike rather than a complete condemnation of his character.


cielodrivecom said...

Matthew, poor choice of words on my part. I shouldn’t have written that he wasn’t a great guy. What I should’ve written was that he struggled greatly and there was nothing steady about his life. He fathered 5 kids with underage girls that he was unable to provide for. He lived a very transient life and for whatever reason, was unable to hold down a job for very long. Sadly, he never had the chance for a second act

John Seger said...

Was Shorty a big drinker? Or just made poor choices his whole life? Five kids from 5 underage girls sounds habitual and stupid for a grown ass man

DebS said...

Shorty was a drinker though I'm not sure how big of a drinker. There were three mothers of Shorty's five children. His second wife was 15 years old when she got pregnant, they married and she had two more children with Shorty before they divorced. The two of them along with their kids lived at Spahn Ranch and both worked there. This was in the very early 60s. Spahn Ranch was more active back then and George was bringing in more money. Shorty and his young wife received a little pay along with the house where they lived.

Not long after the third child was born Shorty took his wife and three children back to Massachusetts to meet his mother and brother. He left his wife and kids there, with his brother, and returned to California. The wife then moved to the mid west, where she had family, and divorced Shorty. She told Shorty and the court that she did not want any alimony or child support but she never wanted Shorty to ever see or communicate with the children again. It is unknown why she made this stipulation.

It came out in the grand jury proceedings that Shorty's mother never knew he had been married before the second wife and had another child.

Yes, Shorty made poor choices over and over again.

David said...

For those wishing to follow along...

The testimony of Paul Whiteley in the Grogan Trial about this photo starts at: Vol. 23, pp 2897. This photo and several others (Ex 34A-F and Ex 40 A and B) are discussed. The other photos include photos and arial photos of the ‘Yellow Submarine’ and the relationship between where the car was found and that house.

The Exhibits, according to my index, are in Box 51, starting at pp 129.

Matthew said...

Thank you Cielodrive, Deb S and Matt. You answered all my questions. I am still going to read the book. I have just always thought of him as the forgotten victim of the Manson family murders. I have known people in my past that could just not get their shit together no matter what and that seems to be who Shorty was.

AustinAnn74 said...

The girls thought Shorty was creepy?Uh.....it should've been the other way around.....Shorty thought the girls were creepy, because, well....they were creepy!

Doug said...

Speaking of Spahn Ranch in August of '69...I wonder if this is -

a) True
b) The source for the rather "odd" bit in OUATIH wgere Cliff Booth happens upon Spahn Ranch with "Pussycat" and, has an "unsettling" visit with George Spahn/Squeaky/Clem?

I've cut n'pasted this - verbatim- from another blog

katie8753
April 23, 2011
at 1:59 PM

"Well I've read that Clayton Moore, the guy that played the Lone Ranger, knew George because the series was filmed out there. He says he stopped in one day in 1969 a couple of weeks before the murders and there were a bunch of hippies on the porch.

He says he spoke to George for a while and he seemed nervous, but he didn't feel that George was in danger. He said if he had felt that he was in danger, he wouldn't have left him there.

So....the Lone Ranger may have seen Charlie that day."

Peter said...

And yet he did nothing.

Doug said...

Exactly!

Nobody did much of anything in advance of the carnage...brutal

Doug said...

"I'm a ghost of a phantom of a shadow in the heart of your children!"

Is it just me...or, does Bob Odenkirk do a better job (than over 90% of the actors that have been cast as Charlie throughout the years) portraying Charlie in this 1992 "Lassie" parody skit?

He's great! And, that quote is bloody brilliant IMO!!

🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥


https://youtu.be/Z5IrRe2F7qY

Doug said...

The OUTTAKES from that skit are GENIUS

https://youtu.be/oGL_H3p_cMo

Chris B said...

Hi everyone. Long time no post. Hope you all are well.

I take everyone has noticed TLB radio is back. This time with a new co-host who is writing a book on the major trial and who established contact with Manson during the research phase.

The main thrust with the radio show appears to be Manson did not get justice and that the killings at Cielo Drive happened in a different order at a different time.

I have seen mentioned elsewhere that Manson stated he went to the house not once but twice that night.

Got a copy of Yesterday's Monsters by Hadar Aviram. An academic writing about the parole system in California using the Manson Family as a lens through which to view it.

Obviously not enough of them in it but it is a good read and well written. Interesting that many of the laws tweaked and introduced came largely on the back of their crimes and perceived lack of suitable punishment.

For the gang here one thing I was unaware of was that Bruce Davis declined an invitation to go to Cielo Drive that evening and that he stated he knew it was to kill those there.

I felt that widened the conspiracy somewhat.

Dan S said...

Not how the male mind works

Dan S said...

Sounds like the tarantino film

Dan S said...

Brilliant. But can he play the sensitive father figure backdoor man?

DebS said...

Doug, the outdoor scenes of the Lone Ranger were filmed at Corriganville, not at Spahn. There were also outdoor scenes filmed in and around Lone Pine. The Lone Ranger with Clayton Moore was aired from 1949 to 1957 except, due to a contract dispute, Moore did not play the Lone Ranger during the 1952/53 season.

Moore and Spahn could have known each other but not because of the filming location. The story is probably a fabrication.

Gorodish said...

From a 2017 post on a Tumblr blog called "Showbiz Imagery and Forgotten History":

“A rancher, George Spahn, had a beautiful spread just above [where The Lone Ranger was filmed]. I knew George pretty well; he often supplied us with horses when we were filming in the area … In 1969, I was in the area … and decided to drop in and see George. When we arrived, we saw about a dozen young people on George’s porch. They looked like hippies … it did strike me as unusual that they were here on George Spahn’s ranch … Inside, George was sitting there motionless, It was very dark in the room. I called out, "George how are you?” He cocked his head to me and said, “Clayton?” and started to cry … We talked for a while and he seemed distressed. I really couldn’t get him to say much … We visited for less than an hour. George seemed depressed. As we prepared to leave, I said, “Is there anything I can do for you, George?” He said, “Just come back to see me.” I promised that I would … I never got the sense he was in danger. If I had, I never would have left him there … I later learned that those young people were part of Charles Manson’s “family” … a couple weeks after my visit it happened].“ - Clayton Moore, The Lone Ranger.

As for the source? Who knows?

AustinAnn74 said...

You got that right!

Gorodish said...

Here's a picture of George Spahn and his ranch foreman, Lance Segal, from 1960.
George certainly looks a lot spryer and happier here.

David said...

The source is Clayton Moore:

https://www.amazon.com/I-Was-That-Masked-Man/dp/0878332162

DebS said...

If Clayton Moore learned a couple of weeks after his visit to George Spahn that the young people at the ranch were part of the Family then he must have been there mid November 1969 because the press announced that the TLB killers had been arrested at the beginning of December 1969. Manson and the major players were in custody by then.

I don't doubt that some of the Family went back to Spahn after the Barker raids and particularly after Manson had been transferred to the LA County jail.

But George Spahn didn't dislike the Family and in fact was grateful for the work they did at the ranch. This is what he said after the arrests-

"Spahn, ignoring the advice of his ranch manager, Ruby Pearl, 51, refused to kick the rest of the Manson followers off his property.

Instead he told visiting reporters he didn't condone murder, but he also didn't want to judge all "the kids" on the basis of the charges against a few.

Yet there was another reason he let those who wanted to stay remain.

"After everything that happened, he said our cowboys left and the only help we had was the kids. We ain't paid nobody to work for us for years."

"We just let anybody stay here that wanted to and hoped they'd help tend the horses, and keep the place looking good."

Los Angeles Times Sept 28 1970


Gorodish said...

David typed:

The source is Clayton Moore

Thank you!

David said...

Here is the whole excerpt:

“A rancher, George Spahn, had a beautiful spread just above Iverson’s Ranch. I knew George pretty well; he often supplied us with horses when we were filming in the area. I remember especially a little white mare we got from him for Chuck Courtney (the Lone Ranger’s nephew, Dan Reid) to ride. Spahn did a little stunt riding in the movies and even built Western sets on his ranch, hoping he could lure the studios to use his place as a movie site. I never filmed anything there, but I believe a few low-budget films were made using George’s sets and his ranch. By the late sixties it was used for little else than horse rentals.

In July 1969 I was in the area, showing Dawn some of the locations where we made so many Lone Ranger episodes, and decided to drop in and see George to say hello. My friend Jim Hoiby was with us, and we drove up to the ranch in Jim’s Volkswagen van. When we arrived, we saw about a “dozen young people on George’s porch. They looked like hippies, which was not so unusual at that time. But it did strike me as a little unusual that they were here, on George Spahn’s ranch. George Spahn had quite a few children himself, but these people didn’t look like they even knew George, much less were related to him. I approached a couple of fellows and said, “I would like to see George Spahn. Is he here?”

One of the guys pointed over to a tiny, dilapidated trailer. “Over there,” he said.
So we got back in the van and drove about a hundred yards over to the trailer. Inside, George was just sitting there motionless. It was very dark in the room. I called out, “George, how are you?”

He cocked his head toward me and said, “Clayton?” and began to cry. I didn’t know until then that he had completely lost his sight. We talked for a while, and he seemed distressed. I really couldn’t get him to say much. At one point a young woman3 brought him a plate of food, and I said brightly, “It’s lunch time, George!” The woman dropped the plate on the table beside his chair and shoved it roughly toward him. She didn’t acknowledge Jim or me, and didn’t say a word to George. Then she turned around and left.

We visited for less than an hour. George seemed depressed. As we prepared to leave, I said, “Is there anything I can do for you, George?”

He said, “Just come back to see me.” I promised that I would. He sounded deeply lonely. But I never got the sense that he was in danger. If I had, I never would have left him there. He was in danger, though. I later learned that those young people were part of Charles Manson’s “family”—Manson himself could well have been there that day. Only a couple of weeks after my visit to the Spahn Ranch, on August 9, 1969, some of these same kids brutally murdered Sharon Tate and several other people in one of the most horrible crimes of our era. I’ve often wondered if I had unwittingly taken my own life into my hands when I drove onto that ranch.

“So many forces contribute to terrible acts like those of the Manson family. But when I read of the murders, I couldn’t help but think that those murderers had once been innocent kids, who may have been fans of the Lone Ranger. How did they take such a wrong turn in life? It made me more determined than ever to stand for decency, honesty, and compassion. If kids’ minds are shaped by outside forces, I was determined that my influence, however small, would be for good, always.”

3. “This young woman may have been Lynette Alice “Squeaky” Fromme, who took care of Spahn. According to the book Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry, Fromme hoped that Spahn would eventually will his ranch to her. That he never did so is probably all that kept him alive. An ardent follower of Charles Manson, Fromme later made headlines when she attempted to assassinate president Gerald R. Ford on September 5, 1975.”

Excerpt From: Clayton Moore. “I Was That Masked Man.” Apple Books. https://books.apple.com/us/book/i-was-that-masked-man/id541580142

Doug said...

Thank you Deb!

Not beyond QT to "fabricate" himself though. Perhaps he "borrowed" this tale from the blogger for his Fairy Tale Movie ;-)

Doug said...

Wow!

DebS said...

Thanks David, Gorodish's Tumblr post quote was out of context, considering all of the ellipses not a huge surprise. Still, I think that Clayton Moore's assertion is a bit dramatic and not entirely true, though he may have believed it.

David said...

Deb,

I bought that book for the Lone Ranger history, which isn't bad and didn't buy the story for one reason when I read it:

"I approached a couple of fellows and said, “I would like to see George Spahn. Is he here?”

One of the guys pointed over to a tiny, dilapidated trailer. “Over there,” he said.
So we got back in the van and drove about a hundred yards over to the trailer."

I did believe, however, that QT got his 'scene' from it.

DebS said...

Ahh, Hi-o-Silver!

George didn't live in a trailer, he lived in a house. But there were dilapidated trailers.

David said...

My point....evenQT knew that.

David said...

Little things matter when you research this stuff.

As you know better than I.

Gorodish said...

I'm guessing that if Clayton Moore really did show up at Spahn in 1969, George would have told Squeaky something like: "Ya know who that was? Clayton Moore! The guy that played the Lone Ranger on TV!" Squeaky, being a TV child of the 50s, would have known all about the Lone Ranger and recorded it in her meticulous journals, which were the source material for her book, and the Lone Ranger visit would've made it into "Reflexion".

orwhut said...

I took it that the kids had taken over George's house and moved him to the trailer making him depressed and prone to cry.

David said...

But we know that was not the case from photos, police interviews, documents and testimony.

Matthew said...

Deb S. said:
I don't doubt that some of the Family went back to Spahn after the Barker raids and particularly after Manson had been transferred to the LA County jail.

We know this to be true from the Hendrickson 1973 documentary.

Matthew said...

Gorodish said;

Here's a picture of George Spahn and his ranch foreman, Lance Segal, from 1960.
George certainly looks a lot spryer and happier here.

This is really an interesting photo. I don't think that I have ever seen George's house from that angel before. Most of the photos of Spahn Ranch are from the road and cut off George's house and the horse corals. It does not look like it is up on a hill as depicted in Once upon a time in hollywood. or at least not that big of a hill