Sunday, April 19, 2009
The most dysfunctional family in America,the Sexton family is written about by Lowell Cauffiel in his true crime book,House Of Secrets.Lowell Cauffiel takes readers into a shocking world of abuse, incest, and family murder. In October 1993, Eddie Lee Sexton told his daughter, Pixie, to silence her crying baby. Incredibly, the young mother smothered the infant, and buried it in a shallow grave. Less than a month later, Eddie Lee ordered his son to strangle the baby's father during a family picnic. Sexton was priming his third victim when the FBI and Florida cops caught up with him. Authorities soon learned that these killings were the final heinous acts of a sadistic monster whose reign of psychological and sexual violence had begun back in Ohio. For years, Eddie Lee whipped his children daily, raped his daughters, abused his sons, and even fathered three Sexton babies. But in early 1992, teenager Machelle Sexton fled to authorities, and by early 1995, Sexton was on death row.
What an absolutely brilliant book!This book features in my top ten true crime books of all time and I suppose the fact that Lowell Cauffiel is a bestselling true crime author and veteran investigative reporter must have something to do with this.Despite the intricate story and the many members of the Sexton family who all form part of this story,this brilliant writer manages to bring together all the facts and details in a smooth flowing fashion with focuses on a time line starting from the very beginning till the monstrous father is put away.
I was able to keep track of everyone easily and each member's own story just seemed to mesh and flow so easily.I can only imagine how difficult this must have been for the writer but he did it.This story is unbelievable but sadly true.The power that this father had over everyone offers some insight as to how cults work and succeed at brain washing large numbers of people.You will finish reading this book and heave a sigh of relief that thank goodness you have never lived close to this family.I have no idea if this was the writer's aim but even though there was just one "bad guy" in this story I do not want to ever meet any of these members of the Sexton family.
Which brings me as to why I decided to suddenly review this book.I read a "tweet" about a 47 year old woman named Tammy Sexton who was shot in the head by her husband Donald Ray Sexton who then also shot himself.He died but she survived well enough to make tea for the police who came to help her after she called them.She was then taken to hospital and is doing okay.(the article is dated 18 April 2009)To find out more
What was weird for me was that as soon as I saw the name "Sexton"(for obvious reasons)I remembered this book and the impact it had on me and I wondered if this was maybe one of the sons who "escaped" from the evil father,Eddie Lee, and now was living the same kind of life his father led,by being abusive to his own family.
And for the cherry on the cake this is a piece from another reader's review:
...two people are dead, and the children who suffered the cruel fate of being born into the Sexton family may never completely heal from their injuries.... How strange is that?
Access the full review above and other readers' reviews on this book by using the Amazon link below
House of Secrets
or for South African readers please access more details via Kalahari Books
I read this book in May 2007 and it has 429 pages and an amazing 16 pages of photographs most of which are personal photos of the Sexton family and a few of the body of the dead baby.It was heart breaking to see a photo of little Skipper alive and well before this mad family killed him.This story is a true tragedy and I believe the sins of this father are going to replay well into further generations.That is the absolute crime.The modern day "gift of crime" that carries on giving.....