The Child Warrior

David Apperson was born into a life of hatred on 3 Sep 1959 at Oregon Health Science University. Due to the fact he was born an illegitimate child, he was deemed by the State of Oregon to be a juvenile delinquent and a ward-of-the-state the day he was born.

In November of 1961, the two-year-old boy was taken to GITMO Cuba without proper legal documentation by his stepfather, an active duty Seabee with the U.S. Navy.

A short time after arriving at GITMO, David had his pinky fingers broken because he accidentally shut a sliding door on a cat's tail, scratching his stepbrother.

On 22 Oct 1962, David was evacuated from GITMO and 1702 others due to the global tensions associated with the Cuban Missile Crises. The situation was handled superbly by John F Kennedy and the president's adviser, Dwight D Eisenhower, on effective political and military strategy.

Cuban Missile Crises in World History

--- Adlai Stevenson Addresses the United Nations on the Cuban Missile Crisis
--- Kennedy's Oval Office Address on the Cuban Missile Crises
--- Russian Ideology on the Cuban Missile Crisis
--- Wikipedia: Cuban Missile Crises

During the evacuation, the White House released to the press that all identities of evacuees were properly vetted. In contrast, evacuees headed toward Norfolk, Virginia in four ships, including, but not limited to, the USNS Upshur with roughly 4,000 US Army Rangers originally headed to Panama for Jungle Training.

However, the paperwork of a few of the evacuees had been falsified. This is because at least three children had records and documentation modified to show that they were military dependents, whereby David Apperson (at three years of age) was the youngest of the three. Two are male, and one is female. As of 3 Jan 2021, all three are still alive.

According to US Navy documents released to the media, a small Baptist Church in Texas gathered winter jackets for the children to stay warm while spending time in Virginia.

After the crisis was over, David was sent back to GITMO with other evacuees and remained there until early Nov 1963.

Due to the stress of the Cuban Missile Crises, David began sucking his thumb at the age of three. As a child, David was constantly whipped and beaten for this action until, at the age of five, David was beaten so badly with a navy belt and buckle that he had black and blue welts over his entire back and legs.

From five to ten years of age, David endured some extremely traumatic events:

  • Numerous beatings that left black, blue, and red bruises
  • At eight years old, David was locked and chained to a metal bed because he wanted to Tricker Treat on Halloween
  • At 9 years of age, stepfather stabbed David in his left arm (the same arm he was later bayoneted with while serving in the military)
  • He had a bottle of Tabasco sauce poured down his throat while being held down
  • On his 10th birthday (1969), David received a severe head wound from his stepfather, treated at the Port Hueneme Naval Hospital in Port Hueneme, California. Stepfather spent 10 days in jail and was then court-martialed by the US Navy.
From the age of 10-15, David spent time in foster homes, juvenile halls, reform schools, and even a hard labor camp for kids run by Oregon. During this period, David spent three-plus months in solitary confinement.

At 12 years old and weighing less than 70 pounds, David put down an armed guard three times his size at the Ventura County Juvenile Facility in Ventura, California. David was subsequently kicked out of California and sent back to the state of his birth.

In just a few months back in Oregon, David drew a picture for the 'Keep America Beautiful' campaign. He won the top prize. However, after being featured in the local paper on 13 Apr 1973, the townspeople realized the hidden message within the drawing, and David was in trouble again. He was confined for three months in the Prineville City Jail and sentenced to nine months at MacLaren School for Boys.

He was later transferred to the Tillamook Boys Camp, whereby he escaped from the camp where he decided to save two other escapees at his own peril in just a few short weeks. He was sent back to MacLaren and spent two more weeks in solitary confinement.

Six months after his escape, David was sent to the Double T Boys Ranch in Bend, Oregon. And shortly after arriving at the boys' ranch, he became a paid firefighter at 14 years of age. He was also a map reader and radio operator for the last teenage crew in Oregon.

Child Warrior
Image of David in black hat and another teenage firefighter in summer of 1974.

It was during this summer that David Apperson put an X between the eyes of a US Marine.

When 15 the State of Oregon sent him back to an abusive home situation, whereby an assault is still on record in Crook County, Oregon.

Not lasting long in the county, David went back to the boy's ranch, where he worked as a night counselor at the ranch and a cook at McDonald's to pay his expenses and finish high school, after which he entered military service when he turned 17 years of age.

U.S. Army image . . . Fort Leonard Wood.

It is all true - David was a firefighter, yet did time for another kid's arson. He was treated like a criminal, yet he excelled in law enforcement. A hard-core machine gunner who searched for the answer to peace wherever he traveled and the path for him always returned to homing pigeons (i.e., doves).

Article by David Apperson on The Oregon Foster Care System and Incarceration Rates.

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