Dwaine Casmey – Trash Transformation P1

Facebook is good for a lot of things. Some of them even useful! Folks from my small hometown in Oregon, have connected with each other & reconnected. We have mutli-class reunions ’cause we all knew everyone’s parents & siblings can & cause . We had a very small school and an even smaller class. Everyone knew everyone. Everyone knew everything. Or  as we’ve seen. Not.

Dwaine and I were acquaintances. A nice ‘kid’, like a little brother. One of the growing Facebook connections from the ‘good ole days.’ He and his wife Kathy have built a lovely life. But as with many of us, it hasn’t been easy or without struggles. Anyone?

As we chatted recently he shared some hard Truths of his very tumultuous life.  He’s been invited to write a book which will be available Fall 2014. It’s not a story for the faint of heart. An article link is below. The full article is provided in part 2.

This is shared here with his and Kathy’s permission:

In his own words:

Shandra – I’m in the process of documenting my story – two stories really. One a hurt child who ended up on the streets and prison and the other of God’s saving grace. So, I’m feeling rather nostalgic these days as I remember leaving home in 1976. While I was just a small pimply unpopular kid, you always smiled at me and treated me as though I had value. I want to thank you for that. Here’s a brief article http://www.biztechmagazine.com/article/2006/11/trash-80-transformation – I was not allowed to share my faith, but after this I was allowed back into MacLaren Youth Correctional Facility to speak with about 40 students. My two stories gave me a unique opportunity to buy a half hour of their time as they listened. This is why I’m putting it in a book. You seem to have done very well – let’s stay in touch.

Dwaine Casmey 

The book should be in ebook form by September 30 and we don’t yet have a name. My editor is responsible for both substantive and copy editing and cover. Writing this is difficult, but very healing as well. People who drove by a 54-year-old man crying on the sidewalk last week will have know idea why. I had just written the part about my parents driving away, leaving me at Children’s Services Division in Dallas. A lot of stuffed feelings back then that I am feeling now. I would be happy to email the foreword though and comment that the book is coming. Kathy and I would be happy for your post.

It was all for a reason. Let’s hope the story inspires… That foreword was edited a little more dramatic to my liking – but we’ll see how it turns out…

Foreword: It was midnight in Salem, Oregon. I was 21 years old. Concealed in my overcoat was a Billy club as long as my arm. I intended to put it to use. I needed money to pay for my hotel. My last ten dollars from a home invasion 3 days earlier had gone for a couple hits of LSD. I was on autopilot. My plan was to catch someone out late (and hopefully drunk). I’d ask for directions, hit them as hard as I could with the club, and take their cash. In my deranged state I planned to repeat this behavior until I’d stolen enough money to pay for my hotel. I was exhausted. I desperately needed to sleep. Tomorrow would take care of itself.

There was no warning. The surprise came. Only it was me that was taken hostage. I thought it might be the LSD but I was entranced by a mental image of a small boy on the front porch of a big white house in his pajamas. The house faced east and the morning sun lit up the porch and the boy. I was overcome by his innocence. Not a worry, NOT a care in the world. I looked closely and saw myself in his face.

I wondered how that little kid became this guy with a club in his coat. I sobbed.

Now in my early 50s with a successful IT career, I still remember that 21-year-old guy with the club in his coat starving, tired and desperate. I’m overwhelmed not only by his lack of values but his profound lack of personal value. What happened between that midnight moment in Salem and what I’ve become today? What went right?

This is not a story of a tough guy gone straight. This is the story of what Jesus’ called “the abundant life” and how I got lucky enough to run into it.” “We trust that I am not living in the past – but writing about it brings some of the tough memories back.” Dwaine

Dwaine and Kathy believe  it’s our responsibility to encourage and point the way to the Healer.


Until next time,

Who have you pointed to today?

Smile at someone. They ARE fighting a battle. And give yourself a hug.


May 25, 2014, 9:24am


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