“Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
Mechille Searles is the last known New Bethany Survivor to leave us – and she did so far too soon.
As a small group of New Bethany survivors went to lay a wreath outside New Bethany’s gate in remembrance of Mechille (and others who passed away too soon), Maxine Ford, Mack and Thelma Ford’s daughter, came out to the gate. They had police-type dogs and proceeded to verbally harass these brave, grieving survivors. Maxine, apparently in such a hurry to join this “defense team”, even forgot to put on a bra. We can only imagine they were not at all pleased with this display of compassion and intended to make sure these ladies didn’t get the opportunity to talk too much about the abuse they all suffered at New Bethany.
As if the verbal assault and presence of the “guard dogs” wasn’t enough, Mack Ford landed an exclamation point on his position by firing three shots. In the video linked below, you can listen for the shots right after the subject of “sexual abuse” is mentioned. It would appear Mack Ford was neither amused nor grieved at what was being said by the survivors.
Chuckles spoke on the phone with Simone Jones shortly after Ms. Jones returned home after her trip to Arcadia, Louisiana. Ms. Jones related that the plans were to remember their friend in a dignified way and then leave. Their intent was never to rant or protest. None of these ladies where trying to be hero’s nor do any of them wish to be called a hero. They merely felt that Mechille Searles (and others) deserved to be recognized for what they endured and what that lead to in their lives.
This is one of the hardest posts we have tried to write. It has been written, tweaked, deleted completely, re-written – all over and over. Mere words just cannot express or explain the horrors that surround Michelle’s story and those of so many like her. We have received 1000’s of pages of legal documents regarding New Bethany and Mack Ford, including legal depositions from Mack and Thelma Ford. Affidavit after affidavit given by former New Bethany residents tell of physical and sexual abuse while at that horrible place. Frankly, I’m growing sick of people talking about Jerry Sandusky when Mack Ford still sits in his compound.
This is a big case. Mack Ford admitted (in his own deposition) that he got the “burden” to start the girls home while on a mission furlough from Australia. His account tells how he met two “blonde-headed” 12 year-old little girls who were “pregnant by their own daddy.” He tells of how he got the “burden” to help little girls like these who were in deep trouble. Missing from the record is Ford saying when/how he or the pastor he worked with at the beginning ever reported their “daddy” to the authorities. Ford’s own words still make my blood run cold. He saw a huge issue, true, but rather than move to protect the girls, he launched his own “empire” working outside the laws designed to protect and punish in these cases. Do girls in that situation need spiritual guidance? Absolutely! But “daddies” like that need to punished to the fullest extent of the law.
Mack Ford’s deposition goes downhill from that point (if you can believe it). When he isn’t claiming “selective amnesia” it just heartbreaking to realize what Mack Ford has done and never been punished for. Reading through all the legal documents, we cannot for the life of us understand why Mack Ford isn’t rotting in prison? And it brings up other questions still unanswered:
- Bienville County Sheriff Department what’s the deal?
- Bienville County District Attorney WHY didn’t you prosecute?
- Federal Bureau of Investigation why didn’t you follow-up when it was reported that Mack Ford raped girls across state lines?
Mack Ford is far more prolific than Jerry Sandusky.
Numerous newspaper reports from Louisiana and Waterboro, South Carolina tell of Ford-owned New Bethany homes. Olin King ran the one in Waterboro, SC. King was arrested and convicted of crimes against children.
And Ford’s “legacy” spread …
After Olin King’s arrest for beating boys, locking a 9 year old boy in a dark cell wearing only underwear, providing only a dirty blanket for “warmth,” treating them like dogs (Literally forming a chain gang by using dog leashes snapped through the boys belt loops) at the New Bethany boys home of Waterboro SC Olin King moved to North Carolina where King opened Second Chance Ranch. Olin King’s son, Doug King married one of his bosses daughters. Penny (Ford) King sent a series of unsolicited emails to a New Bethany survivor who didn’t even make the memorial trip to New Bethany. Penny’s messages, among other things, dammed the recipient to hell.
The attorney of record for King and New Bethany was at the time Bob Jones University board member. Which brings up an interesting (if not completely maddening side question) …
Why does Bob Jones University’s name keep popping up on the wrong side of these cases?
At the Memorial the survivors planned to remember all the survivors of New Bethany that have passed away:
- Doug Gilmore (Note that Mack Ford claimed he had adopted Doug in his deposition. Doug Gilmore wasn’t legally adopted by Mack and Thelma, making Ford’s claim perjury. Doug Gilmore was found dead days before the Mother Jones article was released)
- Angela Williams
- Theresa Trahan
- Joann Coltrain
- Michael (Guy) Richardson
- Mechille Evans Searles