Life After Synanon
March 29, 1998
By Ted Rohrlich
In the turbulence of the late 1960s and early 1970s, when the
Synanon had been heralded by Time magazine for its supposed 80%
Its founder, a charismatic former drunk, may have been so intoxicated
the weird exercises Jesse was honored for (1) receiving his discharge
papers from his parole officer, and (2) having stayed "clean," off the
junk, for a personal record of seven months.
Last Saturday I devoted this space to a situation which I considered a very unfortunate one.
At that time, the body of Carl (Alfalfa) Switzer,
a onetime "Our Gang" star, lay in the County Morgue, and because of
legal technicalities which delayed its release, a funeral planned by
his parents had to be postponed.
The body was being held at the morgue by coroner’s officials, who claimed they couldn’t release it to the family until Switzer’s ex-wife, Dian Collingwood Switzer, gave them approval. The family indicated to me that they had tried unsuccessfully to contact Mrs. Switzer at her home in Hutchinston, Kan.
I printed the story. And it’s one of the perils of journalism that as it was going to press, Mrs. Switzer’s wire arrived in the coroner’s office.
Wanted Legal Advice
should be made clear that the young lady wasn’t deliberately avoiding
giving consent to release of her ex-husband’s body for burial. Because
of the divorce situation, she wanted the telegram to be dictated by her
Los Angeles attorney. And, as soon as she was able to reach him, the
telegram went out.
question of who wrote the original story for the motion picture "The
Brave One" has been dumped into the laps of the Screen Writers Guild
A leading contender for the honor is the deceased Spanish-born writer-dancer-actor, Juan Duval, whose posthumous candidacy I revealed last week.
adding new support to his claim is Dale Robertson. The western star
telephoned me after reading my column- with the information that he,
personally, had taken Juan Duval’s script about a boy and a bull to a number of producers in town.