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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Chapter Seven - Scalpel

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WARNING: Graphic content to follow.

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An Open Letter to Joyce DeJong,

Hey, how are ya? This is Uncle Paul, one of the leftovers from Case No. ##-####. I know, a lot of corpses have piled up at work since then - especially that late-night rush with the Uber driver shooting, no? So I am not at all surprised if the details of Dennis Charles Wolf have somehow been swept along through your transom. Raised to be a gentleman, I am perfectly willing to refresh them for you.

Despite the fact that the cause of my nephew's death was utterly obvious, you chose to dig a little deeper - literally, I'm saying. Oh, I suppose it was possible that Charlie had also been bitten by a Tsetse fly on the same day, or maybe one of those nefarious Russian spies dropped a radioactive isotope in his Spaghetti-O's that afternoon - it could have happened. I'd even say that I can't blame you for trying...

Except that I totally blame you for trying. Considering the evidence, it looks more like you were doing a la carte work on the County's dime than anything resembling due diligence. After reading the public account of your, um, work, I came to understand a lot of things.

For instance, I now know why Charlie's collar was pulled up all the way up to his ears as he lay there in his casket; it's due to the fact that you had peeled all the skin off his neck. I now know that you found his pituitary gland to be "grossly unremarkable", and I also know what you had to do to make that determination.

I know the precise weight - to the gram - of his vital organs. His heart. His liver. His pancreas. All together, those were roughly equal to the same weight as 30 pieces of silver.

I know how the surface of his liver felt through your rubber-gloved hand, kind of pebbly, like the surface of a football. I know what color his heart was, how it was smooth and shiny and healthy with the vigor of youth. I know these things because I have gutted deer and hogs. You see, Joyce, you and I are not so much different after all in our grotesquery.

Your school's Compliance Officer (oh, and Dean of Finance), Tom Zavitz, told us that it was your "professional opinion" that the cause of death could not be changed. Never mind the part about the obvious oxymoron; we were told earlier by WMed that you had based your determination not on your opinion at all, but on the reports of your Investigator and the police department.

However, the police reports don't say that anywhere - I've read them all, as has our attorney - and two of the officers who were here, Sgt. Treu and PSO Pittelkow, have personally told Theresa that they believed Charlie's death was an accident. Just like everyone else told you.

As far as the near-delusional reports generated by your crack Investigator Kai Cronin (a guy who has had his own run-ins with the law, it turns out), they are so demonstrably false as to be laughable under any other circumstances. Between him, you, Jo Catania and Tom Zavitz, I can't even begin to figure out who's really the ringleader in this morbid carnival of stupidity - nor do I care to. I'm not trying to solve a mystery here. I'm setting the record straight, because you got it wrong, and you have steadfastly refused to fix your egregious and hurtful error.

I have read your employer's Professional Code of Conduct. None of you seem to be, in any way, familiar with it. (We'll get into that later... Not just WMed's rules, but also those set forth by the AMA.)

I look at this horror show that you have perpetrated upon our family, which you, in your supreme arrogance, say you won't reverse. I look at the scale(s) of the "professional" company you keep.  I think about you looking at yourself in the mirror each morning, and it occurs to me that you have missed your true calling in life - proctology.

Still, I thank God you laid off going to medical school when you did, before reaching the point where you would be allowed to work on the living because if Charlie had been a live patient, what you did to him would have unquestionably been called malpractice.

We again implore you to do the right thing and reverse your hideous mistake (I am so giving you the benefit of the doubt by calling it that) that has become a part of the public record, a part of Kalamazoo's history books. It's wrong, unacceptably wrong, and some would say it reflects terribly on your record as a professional, others would say as a person.

Good day,

pH 4.27.16

***

NEXT WEEK: CHAPTER Eight - "Dennis the Menace"

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