I Knew The Man
This was a little more than a distant name to me.
I knew Jim Pouillon.
I can't say that we were really friends as I hadn't carried on a conversation with him in couple of years, though if we passed on the streets we would exchange pleasantries. I became acquainted with him through a couple of mutual friends. On several occasions we were both seated with a number of people at a restaurant table drinking our beverages, talking and laughing. He was noted for his graphic posters of aborted children and his lack of any sense of propriety on where to protest. He was good hearted and completely non-violent, but not very bright. But he believed very strongly in the right to life. Even a lot of people who didn't agree with him admitted that he was basically a very good man.
He was also on oxygen and wore a leg brace.
While I agreed with what he was trying to do, I felt that he was frequently protesting in inappropriate places. They complained about his graphic signs and a couple of them were very graphic, but he also protested with a sign that had a smiling baby and the world LIFE beneath it and a similar ultrasound of a baby in the womb.
While officially he was killed because the killer had a personal grudge against him, local information is that his anti-abortion activities were the source of the grudge.
The killer was a local man who had snapped and just started an intended killing spree, complete with a hit-list when he was caught.
It's bad enough to read about strangers but it is shocking when the victim is someone you know.
Update: I did not intend to ignore the second murder victim, Mike Fouss. He was a local businessman who was part owner of several businesses. I knew him only by reputation.
UPDATE: The killer attempted suicide while in jail.
The spot where Jim died.