Thursday, November 6, 2014

Feedback from former residents of Valley Springs Youth Ranch in Missouri

Donny from Des Moines in Iowa testified:
I lived in that nightmare for over a year and the harsh lessons I learnt from the "christian" staff and the little monsters they made worse still haunt me. Abuse of ALL forms runs rampant there. Paroles and overgrown bullies (some of which were perverts) staff the place. Inner city punks are warehoused there to steep in each others psychological filth. Any decent person that goes there is either silenced, ruined or driven out. It is a hell on earth that no child should be subjected to and any adult should be Hung for supporting. I hope there is a special place in Muspell for George Becker and his cronies (especially Tony Shaw) for the abuses I and and the other residents suffered in that festering scab

Dustin Combs from Warrenton in Missouri testified:
hello people hope you all read this would you all like to hear a story well here goes my name is dustin combs and i spent 4 freaking years in that hell hole and to let you know they dont run it like they should the legal way lets just say fights happen there bc the staff they hire some of them dont give two shits its just a paycheck staff betting on which boy will win in a fight staff watching as people get the hell beat out of them and not caring at 17 i weighted 100 pounds and i was so doped on meds so i wouldnt be a probleem and they didnt have to worry bout me i got my butt kicked two times a day aT THE LEAST MADE FUN OF PHYSICALLY AND MENTALY ABUSED BY KIDS AND SOME STAFF ALIKE IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN PRISON BC I WASNT ABLE TO DEFEND MYSELF now there are some good staff but there is bad and to enlighten you there are kids there who dont need to be there i was there bc my adopted parents got tired of me when the money ran out dont dare any of you talk bad bout the guys there you dont know the half of wat some have been through some need it others dont and you all think you are better than me and the guys in the ranch well guess wat fuck you all that think that

A former vsyr boy from Las Cruces in New Mexico testified:
I spent 3 years at vsyr during the mid to late 90's. Now, I can't honestly comment on how things are run now (the daughters of staff were the only girls there at the time), but I am a firm believer that a leopard cannot change its spots. Before you judge me as a reckless thug or spoiled brat, I can honestly tell you that I arrived at vsyr because my parents were herion addicts and judged unfit.

I truly believe George and Joanne have great intentions, and, there were a few staff members who deeply cared for the boys in their charge.For the young men housed there, I truly hope there are more quality people in charge.

But I will share some of my experiences and insights from my time at vsyr. The staff are all about helping someone feel unique and indiviual, as long as you fit into their idea of what that should be. If you deviate from their standard, you are punished and degraded. On one occasion, I was forced to sit outside in the middle of January, without a coat. Several of my housemates, the "bigger" guys, were turned into zombies because of large dosages of sedatives that made them less of a threat. It was very common for a female night staff to have her "favorites" and take those young men to private areas in the middle of the night. Anyone not following the explicit orders of a staff member, even those orders which any other person would scoff at, would be subjected to "restraint," which meant being tackled to the ground. Those with developmental issues were routinely called retard by the staff.

I think, in all my time there, the worst example of abuse happened to the, then, youngest resident. He was 11, and had his face rubbed into the gravel driveway by a 300 pound man. The reason? His grandmother had just died, and he told the man to leave him alone for a while. I, personally, picked little rocks out of the cuts in his skin.

As others have stated, it did no good whenever the abuse hotline was called. George, Jonanne, and their staff all put on a bright, shiny act when investigators came, and then the claimant was severely punished.

I have moved on from my time there, in spite of the soul crushing practices they employed.Perhaps vsyr has changed over the years, but please don't let their fancy words and glossy pictures fool you. It is not as idyllic as they make it sound.


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