36 Years Ago Today: Our Final Good-bye

Loren and Jody Edwards at their bon voyage party.

Loren and Jody Edwards at their bon voyage party.

Thirty-six years ago today I said good-bye to my parents. The next day, they set sail for the South Pacific aboard their 53-foot ketch, the Spellbound. I figured I’d see them again in a year or two.

Three months later, on Feb. 24, 1978, I got a phone call: My father lay dead aboard the boat in the middle of the Pacific Ocean after being hit by the boat’s boom, and my 20-year-old kid sister, Kerry, was unconscious and bleeding from head wounds. The following day, I learned my mother had also died.

I flew to Tahiti, planning to get my sister home safely, send back my parents’ bodies and sail the boat home. But at the hospital in Papeete, Kerry told me that Dad was not hit by the boom, that she had a fractured her skull in a separate incident, and Mom, apparently, had taken her own life, shooting herself with our brother’s gun. Our brother, Gary, was with the boat at the island of Rangiroa.

The FBI arrived a few days later, and my younger brother became their prime suspect in its murder investigation. The FBI labeled its report “Crime on the high seas: Murder.”

But federal prosecutors never indicted my brother, leaving the case unresolved. My family splintered, some insisting on my brother’s innocence, others convinced of his guilt.

Dare I Call It Murder? - A Memoir of Violent LossThree decades later, a dispute over how to respond to the publication of an inaccurate account of the deaths in a true-crime book written by Ann Rule ripped my tattered family even farther apart.

In my book, Dare I Call It Murder?: A Memoir of Violent Loss, I unmask the trauma of violent loss as I ferret out previously unreported facts to get at the truth of how and why my parents were killed.

Praise for the Book

“. . . chilling . . . palpable . . . powerful . . .”   —Kirkus Reviews

Winner, San Diego Book Awards, 2012 — Unpublished Memoir

Award Nominee

  • Pulitzer Prize (2014): Letters, Drama, and Music > Biography/Autobiography
  • Benjamin Franklin Award (2014): Autobiography/Memoirs

Amazon Best-Seller

Learn more at: http://www.dareicallitmurder.com

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About Polishing Your Prose

Larry M Edwards is an award-winning investigative journalist, author, editor and publishing consultant. He is the author of three books, and has edited dozens of nonfiction and fiction book manuscripts. Under Wigeon Publishing, he has produced six books. As author, "Dare I Call It Murder? A Memoir of Violent Loss" won First Place in the San Diego Book Awards in 2012 (unpublished memoir) and 2014, Best Published Memoir. The book has also been nominated for a number of awards, including: Pulitzer Prize, Benjamin Franklin Award, Washington State Book Award, and One Book, One San Diego. As Editor, "Murder Survivor’s Handbook: Real-Life Stories, Tips & Resources" won the Gold Award in the 2015 Benjamin Franklin Book Awards, Self-Help. For a sample edit and cost estimate, contact Larry: larry [at] larryedwards [dot] com -- www.larryedwards.com -- www.dareicallitmurder.com -- www.wigeonpublishing.com
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