xxxNews Of The Weirdxxx
Bizarre but true stories about real people collected by syndicated columnist Chuck Shepherd.
When her 14-year-old son died in a farming accident last July in Beaumont, Texas (pronounced dead at 2:20 p.m. on the 31st), Melissa Devillier knew that the boy’s Social Security survivor’s benefits (from his dad’s death in 1992) would be terminated, but government was startlingly swift to act. On Aug. 11, it told the mother that since the boy had not lived out the entire month of July, he didn’t qualify for July benefits, and federal law required her to pay back the $1,025 July advance she had already received.
In Santa Fe, N.M., in March, after police recovered $46,000 worth of jewelry near an abandoned safe in a ravine, they concluded that burglars had stolen the 180-pound safe from a nearby home, taken it down the road and tried mightily to break it open, but failed, finally just pushing it down the ravine, at which point (unknown to them, because they had left) it finally burst open.
Corinth, Vt., farmer Chris Weathersbee’s house was raided by state police in February and the 44 most-sickly of his goats were seized, leaving him 70 still residing in the house, which is outfitted for them with hay covering the floors to a height of about 2 feet (and, of course, including manure). Weathersbee, 63, told the Valley News (Lebanon, N.H.) that he personally only started sleeping in the house in January (because of the weather); before that, he had slept in the barn with the goats that couldn’t fit in the house. An educated man with a nimble mind, he denied that he is a hoarder and asked authorities for more time to find a home for his goats, since he believes that any confiscated by the state would surely be killed (or neutered, which he said violates animals’ “right” to procreate).
After a bout of heavy drinking, a landscape worker, riding home with his buddies, fell to his death while trying to urinate out of the open door of their car at about 25 mph (Croesgoch, Wales, November).
Send your Weird News to Chuck Shepherd, P.O. Box 18737, Tampa, Fla. 33679 or Weird@compuserve.com
Copyright © 2001 by Chuck Shepherd
NEWS OF THE WEIRD