Way back on the 18th of March in 2009 I posted a piece on this blog entitled "Ken Lay is Alive . . . and so is Dan White," which suggested that those two individuals, a con-artist and a murderer, might not have died the natural deaths that had been reported in the media, but instead might be alive and in hiding with new identities and most likely with new faces.
Ken Lay had been the boss at Enron, a large energy company in Houston, and a benefactor and friend of the Bush family. When Enron suddenly went belly-up, many investors suffered grievous harm to their personal fortunes, and more than a few state governments were also hurt in the financial debacle. Ken Lay, as CEO, was indicted on 11 counts of fraud in 2004, and two years later after one of those counts had been dismissed by a judge, he was convicted on the remaining ten. He was three months away from sentencing (a sentence that could have amounted to 20 or 30 years in prison) when he suddenly died while on vacation in Colorado.
Linda Lay, the tearful widow, went on national television sobbing about how the family had lost all of its money in the Enron collapse, and now all she had left was the family home. It took awhile for the public to learn that Lying Linda had misspoke and the Lay family actually had clear title to eleven homes.
Paramedics were called to the Lay vacation home in Colorado to collect the body. A quick autopsy and cremation followed, and the ashes of the man President George W. Bush referred to as "Kenny Boy" were buried in a secret location in the Rockies. A public funeral was held later in Houston with former President George H.W. Bush in attendance.
One, two, and Kenny Boy was gone - or was he? Lay's death had profound positive legal ramifications for his survivors (or family co-conspirators) because they no longer had to worry about paying back any Enron debt from their personal monies. Ken was dead and the lawsuits went away. The internet began percolating with rumors that the death of Ken Lay was a bit too convenient. The prevailing notions were that the Lay's had the means (money) to come up with a dead body that resembled Ken, and then fire up the crematorium and burn the evidence before anyone got too nosy. People also assumed that someone as rich as Ken Lay could acquire the services of a great plastic surgeon and completely transform his facial features.
Kenny Boy's ashes might be buried in the Rockies, or his alive-and-breathing body might be holed up on a small tropical island somewhere sipping rum drinks and playing footsie with the native girls. There was some natural skepticism of the death story.
There is also a group of people who remain skeptical of the "death" by suicide of former San Francisco City Supervisor Dan White. White, a one-time San Francisco policeman who had issues with the city's emerging gay rights' movement, shot Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk in cold blood one afternoon in City Hall. He was convicted of the murders but given an embarrassingly light sentence on only five years for the double homicide. The San Francisco police appeared to go to great lengths to support Mr. White during his trial.
Dan White served his sentence and was living in the Bay Area under an assumed name when he killed himself by asphyxiation. His death ended efforts by some locals to find and hound him over what they saw as his getting away with murder. Local law enforcement, White's former employers and co-workers, handled matters resulting from the death. There was, of course, some speculation, that White had staged a phony death, with an assist from the police, to evade his relentless pursuers.
Now comes another story of a mysterious death of another person who had the motive and the means create a timely, though fictional, self-demise. Aubrey Kerr McClendon, the former head of Cheasapeake Energy Company, was killed in a single vehicle accident on March 2nd, one day after he was indicted by a federal grand jury for conspiring to rig bids for the purchase of oil and natural gas leases in northwestern Oklahoma. McClendon, the only occupant of the car, reportedly died when the vehicle his a concrete embankment and was engulfed in flame.
McClendon might have had his telephone in one hand and a cheeseburger and a letter from his lawyer in the other, and a hot cup of coffee between his thighs - and not paying attention to the road, much the same as millions of other Americans do when they go barreling down the highway each day, or he might have hit that embankment intentionally to take his own life - or he might have not been in the car at all and made other arrangements for it to have appeared to have been him who went up in flames.
Perhaps all three deaths were as they seemed - and the world is down two corporate con-artists and one cold-blooded killer, or perhaps we live in a country where the ultra-rich and those with solid gold connections have options of working well beyond the system that controls the lives of the rest of us.
Perhaps Kenny Boy and McClendon are sitting under the palms on some warm atoll a little southeast of Bora Bora, telling tales and reliving their glory days, while Dan White rubs sunscreen on their backs and freshens their drinks. It would all be just perfect, and while those three may not deserve to live an idyllic life, two of them, at least, could afford it.
And yes, I am still working on who really shot JFK!