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CASH Courier > 2000 Fall Issue

Selected Articles from our newsletter

The C.A.S.H. Courier

From the Fall 2000 Issue

CALVIN OF OAKKNOLL

BY MARY OF OAKKNOLL

You may recall the article that we published by Calvin of Oakknoll.  In self-defense, he shot and killed a hunter on his property.  The hunter was trespassing and belligerent, and Calvin shot when the hunter shot at his house and raised his rifle aiming at him.  In this pro-hunting town, Calvin, who disliked hunting, was sentenced to life imprisonment. Unbelievably, his 33 acres of land named Oakknoll were confiscated and given to the widow of the hunter.  C.A.S.H. recently discovered that Calvin of Oakknoll passed away when our newsletter was returned marked "Deceased."  Mary said she thought we'd been notified, but sadly we weren't.  Over the years, Calvin was told repeatedly by the parole board that he would be released if he would but confess to killing the hunter in cold blood.   Calvin steadfastly refused over the years because, in truth, he shot him in self-defense and was unfairly imprisoned.  Mary of Oakknoll spent 17 years visiting Cal at the Wallkill Correctional Center in New York from Ohio.  I asked her if we could share the memorial she wrote which was held at Oakknoll Too (land that Mary's family owned).  We feel honored that she is allowing us to publish it. (For space purposes, it has been somewhat shortened.)

Because Oakknoll is lost to us, we now plant upon this knoll an oak, and name this property "OAKKNOLL TOO."  Too with a double meaning also.  For, no matter who owns it, the original homestead will forever be Oakknoll and this land a part of that land, though many miles away.  I will plant an oak upon this knoll every year on the anniversary of Cal's death until the last one is planted on the day my ashes mingle with his.  At that time we will both have yielded up our share.

By helping with the scattering of Cal's ashes you initiate the fulfillment, not only of our vows, but of Cal's most steadfastly held religious beliefs and his earnest personal desire to return to the soil of the earth.  This is a return to not only the soil but to sunlight and moonlight; wind and rain; grass and flower; bird and tree; plant and animal.  A return to participation in the life of the universe of which he wrote so expressively in his poem, Of Stars."  (C.A.S.H. will publish the poem when it is received).

 

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