Depress ctrl and + keys together to increase zoom/font size; depress ctrl and – keys together to reduce
My first run-in with my father’s second wife, Joann Linder Bashinsky (today known as Joann F. Bashinsky) came about after my younger brother Major raised a ruckus about my father and Joann boasting about having Salvation Army trucks come to my father’s home to haul off stuff which had belonged to his first wife, Nelle, who was Major’s and my and our sister Elizabeth’s mother. All of those belongings our mother had given our father the right to use during his lifetime, but then they were to go to her children. The house also was hers, and she had given our father the right to live in it for his lifetime, then it was to go to her children.
In reaction to Major’s ruckus, our father came up with the idea of giving each of his children a $100,000 life insurance on his own life, for which he would pay the premiums, in exchange for his children deeding to him and Joann our interest in our mother’s home. It came to me to make a different proposal, which I shared with Major and we then went to see some lawyers who knew about such things and asked them what they thought about it?
The proposal was, we three children would deed our father and Joann our interest in our mother’s home in exchange for Joann agreeing in writing to honor our father’s Last Will and Testament, whatever it was. We had no clue what was in it, but we were concerned that Joann, having a power of appointment over what was called the “marital trust”, which was standard in rich people’s Last Will and Testaments, might not go along with what our father had provided and would change it to suit herself, which she legally would be able to do.
The estate tax experts we went to see, I knew them from other dealings I’d had as a lawyer, and one was a good friend fo mine, said they couldn’t see another wrong with my idea. Our deal would be with Joann. She was getting something of value in exchange for her written agreement not to exercise her power of appointment to change the Marital Trust distribution on her death, if she had survived our father.
So advised, Major and I went to a meeting scheduled by our father with his lawyer and his accountant, at which we were to sign the deed our father’s lawyer had prepared. We told them of our proposal, and what the estate tax lawyers had told us. They were not expecting that, of course. The lawyer and the accountant said they would have to look into it. My father was ruffled, said he did not believe Joann would change what he provided in the Marital Trust. Major and I still did not know what his Last Will and Testament looked like, and we said we were not asking to see it and only were asking Joann to leave it as is, if we deeded her our interests in our mother’s home.
Major and I heard later that Joann threw a monster fit, said she was not going to give away what was rightfully hers!!! So, nothing happened. That was the beginning of the rift between Joann and me, and between my father and me.
Many years later, my father offered to have our mother’s home appraised and he would pay Major, Elizabeth and me our share of the appraisal. I told him I would be happy to deed him my interest in the home; it had been put into my mother’s name initially to save estate taxes, was how I understood it, and she had given him a life estate on her death, and the remainder to us children, to save estate taxes. Just a lawyer trick, I said. My father said, no, he wanted to push money to his children, so I agreed to it, the appraisal was done, the transaction was completed. That was the fall of 1991. Perhaps the closing was in early 1992.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s my father’s second wife, Joann Bashinsky, the born-again Christian
post at goodmorningbirmingham.com, not long after my father had passed over in late August 2005, he came to me in a dream and said he had left before being able to attend to a few things and he hoped I would attend to what he had not had time to do. I awoke really pissed off, and told him that wasn’t true; he’d had plenty of time to attend to those things but he had put it off because it would have meant dealing with his second wife, Joann, now his widow. However, there were two things I felt needed addressing anyway, and I would do what I could.
My father had left Joann $14,000,000 cash, via a codicil to his will executed about 8 months before he passed over. He was in frail health, under round the clock care by hospice workers at his home by then, and it looked fishy to a lawyer buddy of mine who read my father’s will for me. It looked fishy to me, too. The second thing was, my father’s will made no provision for any of his grandchildren.
So, I sent Joann an email, in which I told her about the dream and reminded her that she had received enough from my father otherwise to last her quite comfortably for the rest of her life and then some. I asked her to disperse the $14,000,000 million to my father’s grandchildren, in equal shares, which would include the son of her daughter, whom my father had legally adopted. I also asked her to include my father’s first son, my older step brother Travis, in the distribution, as if he were a grandson. Travis was a forbidden subject in our family, and he had not, as far as I knew, received any inheritance from his and my father.
Joann’s response to that request was to block me out of her email account. Part of my father’s estate was a large trust he had set up years before to avoid paying a lot of estate taxes later. Let’s call that the Family Trust. When it was set up my father conveyed into it a great deal of common stock, including all, I think, of his personally-owned common stock in the family business, Golden Enterprises, Inc., which was traded on the NASDAQ stock exchange. Golden Enterprises was a holding company, included in which was Golden Flake Snack Foods, Inc., the mother company, and a couple of much smaller companies, so much smaller that they are not relevant to this discussion.
Golden Flake Snack Foods made about the same products Frito-Lay made, and Frito-Lay was Golden Flakes main competitor. My father had purchased a lot of Frito-Lay stock as a hedge, and that had proved bountiful as Frito-Lay grew in size, dwarfing Golden Flake, and then Frito-Lay had merged with Pepsi-Cola, and became Pepsi-Co, and that further dwarfed Golden Flake. Perhaps my father put some Pepsi-Co common stock into the Family Trust, as well. He put other common stock into it, including Torchmark, Inc. common stock, which was the basis of his and his father’f fortune, which is another story altogether. My father paid the gift tax on all of the common stock transferred into the Family Trust. By paying the gift tax then, gambling the common stock then would rise in value, the estate tax on that common stock at his death was eliminated.
The dividends from the common stock in the Family Trust were to be paid to my father, and perhaps also to Joann jointly, and then to the survivor for so long as they lived. Upon my father’s death all of the Family Trust income (dividends from the common stock) went to Joann. This was one of the provisions my father had made for Joann. Another provision was, during her life, Joann was the beneficiary of my father’s estate separate and apart from the Family Trust. That was another trust, which I will call the Marital Trust. I saw no reason for Joann to need the $14,000,000.
In hindsight, I perhaps should have told my lawyer friend, who was an expert in such matters, and was one of the lawyers who had advised Major and me about our trying to get Joann to agree not to change our father’s Last Will and Testament, to contest the $14,000,000 cash bequest as being made under undue influence. However, going that route never occurred to me at the time. I had been trained by the angels to avoid litigation at all costs, but perhaps that lawsuit would have been allowed, since I was not asking for anything for myself, but only for all of my father’s grandchildren and Travis. Yet, had the lawsuit prevailed, the $14,000,000 would have gone into my father’s estate, and thus into the Marital Trust, the ultimate beneficiaries of which, unless Joann changed it in her will, would be my father’s children to the extent any of that estate remained. So, in that light, the lawsuit would have been self-serving, as I would have been a potential beneficiary. However, the intent of the lawsuit would have been to reach a settlement in favor of my father’s grandchildren and Travis.
Well, none of that happened. Instead, I renounced my interest in the Family Trust in favor of my daughters, with a request to them that they provide for my second wife, Jane, who under our divorce decree was entitled to a portion of my interest in the Family Trust. When my daughters proved unresponsive, I then was told to revoke the renouncement, which I did, because I was required by law and by God and by my own sense of what was right to provide for Jane to receive what was hers under our divorce decree, if I outlived Joann and received my part of the Family Trust.
The Family Trust was set up to terminate in the year 2021 (I think), or the sale of Golden Enterprises, whichever event came first. The company has not been sold. Joann is dying from Parkinson’s, a horrible disease I would not wish on anyone. Her only child/daughter Suzanne died of a terrible cancer a few years ago. My brother Major killed himself about a year before Suzanne died. My younger sister Elizabeth and I are my father’s surviving children, and Travis, who is not part of the family except in my thoughts and heart. Elizabeth has four children, I have two.
Major left four children, two by his first wife, two by his second wife. He worked out a deal with our father when the Family Trust was being drawn up, which allowed Major to determine in his own Will how his part of the Family Trust would be distributed if he died before he received his part. In his Will, Major cut his two oldest children out of the Family Trust and out of his own estate, and only his two younger children by his second wife stepped into his shoes. Suzanne’s son Landon stepped in her shoes. My sister and I stand to receive our parts of the Family Trust upon Joann’s death. I don’t know what her Last Will and Testament does with her power of appointment over the Marital Trust. If still living at Joann’s death, I will pass on to Jane her part of the Family Trust which I receive, tax free to Jane, based on a dream. All of which assumes nobody contests my part of the Family Trust, which brings me to the Travis part of this saga.
In the summer of 1998, I dreamt of being in the den of my father’s home. Reclined on the chaise lounge where my father normally hung out was a fellow someone younger than I named Travis Gamble, whom I had known growing up. He and I had played a lot of golf and cards together at the Birmingham County Club, which back then you only got into if your parents were in it, or you were really important and had connections with the honchos in the club hierarchy.
I shared the dream with Richard, a close a male friend in California, who thereupon became clairaudient and began hearing from Above all sorts of stuff about a half-older brother of mine named Travis, who was the son of my father and the daughter of the black servants in the home of my father’s parents. Travis was half African-American, half AngloSaxon-Jew (my Grandfather Bashinsky’s father was a Polish Jew). My father had really loved Travis’ mother, but they were teenagers and interracial affairs were not okay in Birmingham back then. My Grandfather Bashinsky paid the mother and her parents money for the mother to leave Alabama with her unborn child and never she nor he would return. Further payments were made to the mother as time passed.
I also shared the Travis dream with another close male friend, Aubry, who had worked at Golden Flake and had retired due to heart trouble. He then started having mystical, including clairaudient, experiences of his own. He had lots of dreams of a mystical nature, and sometimes he had dreams for/about me. After I told him of the Travis dream, Aubry then had a long string of dreams about my half-brother Travis, filling in lots more details: how Travis was doing; how he felt about what had gone down; how he felt about me, not favorably, I had walked away from being the Golden Flake successor to my father. After my father was older, he had taken over sending money to Travis’s mother and then perhaps also to Travis. Intermediaries I knew where used to make the money payments.
All of this was news to me, but the way it went down convinced me it was for real. Richard and Aubry were convinced it was for real. Then, Aubry had a final dream. I was apprehended by the FBI, hand-cuffed and hauled away, as I looked back over my shoulder at Aubry saying, “I didn’t do anything wrong! I didn’t do anything wrong!” Aubry awoke in cardiac arrest. His wife rushed him to a hospital, where he was stabilized. His wife told him no more dealings with me. He and I were very close. It was painful.
Meanwhile, I went to see my father’s older brother Leo. Their younger brother Jack had died in his late teens. Born with the cord around his neck, Jack was an invalid and mentally diminished his short sad life. Many times when I was younger I had wished Leo had been my father because he and I both loved to fish. He knew that, and he had once told a friend of mine, Rick Ruoff, a flats guide in Islamorada, Florida Keys, that I should have been his son.
Leo was a direct person, minced no words. Why had I come to see him? I said I came to ask him if I had a brother I didn’t know about? Leo looked me dead in the eye, said, “I don’t want to have anything to do with that.” I said okay. I got his drift. Yes, I had a brother I didn’t know about, and he wanted to be left out of it. That was my earthly confirmation that Travis existed, of which I already had no doubt when I went to see Leo. That was in September 1998.
I sat on all of that until mid-December 1999, when I was moved by the angels to write a letter to my father, that was how we sometimes communicated back then. Face to face would necessarily include Joann and he didn’t want that and I really didn’t want it either. I told him how I had come to learn about maybe having an older half-brother named Travis, but left Leo out of it, and I left mixed-race out of it. I named Richard and Aubry as my human informants. Aubry and my father had been very close. I said if I did have an older half-brother, I was not upset, but I would like to meet him if that was possible. I told my father, if I did not hear back from him, I would take that to mean I did have an older half-brother.
Little did I then know Joann intercepted that letter and read it before giving it to my father. Little did I then know Joann intercepted and read all of my letters to my father. I didn’t learn of that until late 2004, which is another story entirely.
I heard nothing back from my father. I was not surprised, said, oh well. My father was in the habit of giving each of his children, including Suzanne, common stock in either Pepsi-Co or Torchmark for Christmas. Usually it was valued between $8,000-$10,000. I didn’t receive any common stock that Christmas. I said, oh well.
A few days later, I was overwhelmed with a directive from Above to legally change my name to Sloan Young. My birth name was Sloan Young Bashinsky, Jr. Then, I was to legally renounce all inheritances from my father. I did that. Then, I was to get a new driver’s license and a new passport in the name of Sloan Young, and I was to become Sloan Young with Social Security. I did that.
The woman I then was with, who was clairaudient and had very good spirit vision as well, was given a parallel directive to change her name to Cathy Young, change her passport and Social Security to Cathy Young, and to let her parents know what she had done, as well as her son and her friends. I was directed to let my sister and brother and children and father Jane and my third wife know what I had done. Cathy and I did what we were directed to do. We were in lockstep.
Then, we were told to leave Birmingham, where we then were living. We paired our belongings way down, put what was left into my old Chevorlet, and we left Birmingham, headed westerly, as Cathy had been hearing was the direction we were to travel. About 90 miles down the road, the car engine overheated, all the radiator fluid ran out. The car was finished. We packed two bags, were given a lift further down the road to where their was a motel, and then began another story, which finally ended up with my leaving Cathy on Maui with a family we had met, who liked Cathy, and my coming to Key West, homeless. Westerly.
On Maui came the first signals from Above that I should go back to being Sloan Young Bashinsky, Jr. But I did not grok the signals, and I did not want to grok them. I liked Sloan Young, I liked him a lot. He was the truest, toughest man I knew. I liked the name. Yet over the next few years, more signals came to go back to being Sloan Young Bashinsky, Jr. I did not grok those signals, either, until they became blatant in 2003, just after this poem jumped out of me in early June 2003, just before I nearly died of MRSA in Key West.
“I AM A MAN”
I am a man.
I am a man!
What means it,
being a man?
A man is a warrior:
he lives by a code of honor,
his word is reliable,
his actions confirm his words,
his commitment is holiness,
his enemies are welcome at his hearth,
he fears but moves forward,
he cries and gets up again,
he hates but forgives,
he loves and let’s go,
he doubts but trusts God,
he’s a good friend,
he seeks resolutions,
he demands nothing,
he risks everything,
he regrets his mistakes,
he seeks to make amends,
he puts others’ welfare first,
he accepts apologies truly made,
he expects nothing back,
he lives ready to die,
he laughs when he “should” scream,
he screams when he “should” laugh,
he sings just because,
he shrugs off insults,
he learns from misfortune,
he cusses God for making him,
he wishes he was done,
he loves children and animals,
he relishes a woman’s scent,
he smiles when he’s content,
he knows God’s his master,
he walks in rainbows,
his garden is the world,
his way is nature,
he loves fishing,
his wife is his soul,
his food is life,
his pay is whatever he receives.
Yep, he’s crazy.
So, I legally changed my name back to Sloan Young Bashinsky, Jr. I got a new driver’s license, passport and Social Security card issued in my original name. I revoked the renouncement of my inheritance, all as directed to do.
I was not happy about it. I resented it. I had done precisely what I had been told to do. And now I was undoing all of it. I thought it was just plain wrong to go for an inheritance, when my father wanted nothing to do with me in this life; when he thought I was insane; when he wished, I imagined, that I never had been born; when I knew the real problem was Joann, who wanted me dead, a psychiatrist had once told me after he had met with Joann and my father. And, I was really upset that the angels had me blocked from making a living wage doing what I was good at: writing, counseling, consulting.
Although I remained fast to being Sloan Young Bashinsky, Jr. again, I waffled again about the inheritance for the reasons stated above. I wrote a letter to my father in July 2005 saying it just wasn’t right for me to inherit from him under the circumstances. Then, I was told in dreams that was not okay for me to have done. So, I called my father’s lawyer, with whom I had attended law school at Alabama, and, later, tax law school at Alabama. I had sent the letter to him because I didn’t want Joann to see if first. He said he had already had it delivered to my father, ie. to Joann. I told the lawyer I was told in a dream that the letter was a mistake. Maybe I then wrote another letter, saying the previous letter was a mistake. I don’t recall for sure.
My father died about a month later. The lawyer called me to tell me that just after I typed the last sentence in a tearful eulogy I had typed about my father’s and my relationship on a borrowed computer in the county library where I was hanging out that summer. I burst into tears. The lawyer said I should not be sad, my father was in a better place now. I said I knew that, I was not crying because he had died. The lawyer asked why I was crying? I said, because my father and I never patched things up between us.
The lawyer was all in favor of my receiving the inheritance my father had left to each of his children, which inheritance, $1,000,000 cash, which I received on February 14, 2006, Valentine’s Day, which was not lost on me or the lawyer. The same lawyer who had drawn up the deeds on my mother’s home for Major and me to sign over to my father and Joann. The inheritance enabled me to stop being homeless, or nearly so. On Joann’s death, each of my father’s children, or their heirs, were to receive a second $1,000,000 inheritance, if my father’s estate had that much money. Years later, perhaps 2012, I sent my father’s lawyer, as directed from Above, a notarized affidavit, plainly stating that I revoked any and all prior renouncements of my inheritance from my father. The lawyer replied that was sufficient, I needed to do no more.
All the while I remained bent out of shape over the hoopla about the inheritance, when there had seemed to be no concern from Above when I was penniless, living on the street, living just off the street, unable to make a living wage, despite having been moved in 2001 to write what I still feel is about as good a novel as ever was written, for which I gave God the credit; I seemed to be taking dictation. Even today, it looks to me the reason for the hoopla was to allow Jane to receive what was her’s under our divorce decree, which I feel is dead on. And, there is a woman I have been supporting financially since mid-2005, who also needs to be cared for financially. The inheritance is the only way to do that, as things now stand.
If I was pressed to hazard a guess, I’d guess Joann will pass over soon, and my writing this today is required of me in that regard. What I do not know yet is whether or not I am to go back further in time and relate the things Joann did, which precipitated my being used to challenge her and put my father on the hot seat, which probably led to an inevitable estrangement between my father and me. The real tragedy was, is, we truly loved each other, but on this world it was doomed to go the way it went. It did not help the outcome, that I was grabbed from Above and taken down a road which refuted my father’s capitalistic perspective and brought God far to close to human affairs for ordinary people’s comfort.
Nor did it help that I was put through experiences that rendered me insane for a while, and caused me to be associated with my father’s afflicted brother Jack, about whom my father, nor Leo, ever would speak to me. Because of Jack, they would not bring their friends to their home, so embarrassed were they about Jack, who did nothing but be born with the chord around his neck. He was totally innocent. I cannot claim that; however, I was grabbed, and I was taken down a road my father and Leo and my children and their mother and Jane could not fathom. A road nobody I know today, except the woman I am taking care of, can fathom. She’s on a similar road, but has put in less time on it than I have.I think my being hauled off by the F.B.I. had to do with a dream I had passing through Tallahassee en route to Key West.
In my dreams, federal anything is about the High Court – God’s court.
In the dream, the federal judge, for whom I had clerked after graduating from Alabama’s law school in early 1968, his name was Clarence W. Allgood, came to me and said he was thinking about getting involved in politics. I said I didn’t think that was a good idea, but knowing him, I figured he would do it. I awoke in shock, I detested politics. When he was alive, Judge Allgood had run the Democratic Party in Alabama, which back then was the only political party. No one ran for national or state office in Alabama without first getting Judge Allgood’s blessing. I knew I was going into politics, which is yet another story.
Ces’t cera cera (What will be will be)