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Featured Commodores Messenger Book I by Janis Gillham Grady

Discussion in 'Breaking and Major News about Scientology' started by janisgrady, Jul 1, 2017.

  1. janisgrady

    janisgrady Patron

    Commodores Messenger Book I, A Child Adrift in the Scientology Sea Organization by Janis Gillham Grady

    Expecting to be released in July 2017.

    Introduction as to who I am:

    My mother was Yvonne Gillham-Jentzsch, the founder of Celebrity Centre for the Church of Scientology. After my parents divorced, my mother married Heber Jentzsch, who is well known as the President of the Church of Scientology International.
    My father is Peter F. Gillham (AKA Pete or Peter Snr.) who, in the 1970s, was known as one of the top lecturers on the subject of Scientology. In addition to his lectures, Peter authored two successful books “Tell It Like It Is” and “The Fundamentals of Success” which thousands of people credited with helping them. He later became internationally known as a nutritionist with monthly newsletters giving nutritional advice and tips. In the 1980s he developed instant CalMag, leading him to develop Natural Calm by Natural Vitality in the 1990s, which he writes about in his book “The Miracle Nutrient.” Natural Calm remains a best-selling magnesium supplement and has helped thousands of people internationally improve their health.

    In the mid-1960s ”the Gillhams” were regarded as Scientology’s first family in Australia. When Scientology was banned in the Australian state of Victoria, my parents moved the family to England. Shortly afterwards we moved to the Scientology ships. In later years, we were accepted as the second family of Scientology. Yvonne headed up Scientology’s Celebrity Centre and built it to more than two hundred staff, while Peter introduced people into Scientology through his books, lectures and as the Executive Director of the Scientology Phoenix mission. Meanwhile my sister Terri, my sister-in-law Doreen Smith-Gillham and me were all senior ranking Commodore’s Messengers working directly with L. Ron Hubbard, founder of Scientology. My brother, Peter Jr., also worked directly with L. Ron Hubbard on the ship and on land.

    As a child of 11, in January 1968, I arrived on the Scientology ship, the Royal Scotman where I became an original Commodore’s Messenger for L. Ron Hubbard. Over the next 11 years I spent six hours or more a day with L. Ron Hubbard, until December of 1979, when shortly after, Hubbard went into “hiding” with fellow Commodore’s Messengers, Annie and Pat Broeker. Hubbard passed away in January 1986.

    Many who were there say I was raised by Hubbard. My husband jokes that I was raised by wolves (living in a pack), but I believe I was not raised at all, but grew into the world around me. Ha!

    Having lived on the Scientology ship, Apollo (previously named Royal Scotman) for eight years as a personal messenger for L. Ron Hubbard and then another three years by his side as he moved around the U.S. east coast to the west. As Commodore’s Messengers, we were direct representatives of Hubbard within the world of Scientology. After 22 years, I left in August 1990, no longer able to agree with the direction the Church of Scientology was taking. Along with my husband of 11 years, we disappeared into the night to raise a family outside of the world of Scientology.
  2. CommunicatorIC

    CommunicatorIC @IndieScieNews on Twitter

  3. IWantOffThisTrain

    IWantOffThisTrain Eternal Optimist

    Cant wait to read your books! Storys/books about life on the boats fascinate me. It seems so unreal but knowing it really happened just, well, fascinates me. Thank you for telling your story.
  4. dchoiceisalwaysrs

    dchoiceisalwaysrs Gold Meritorious Patron

    :thumbsup: Janis.

    I am so looking forward to reading your story as you tell it in this book.

    Can it be advance ordered perhaps through Tony Ortega's Amazon link at the Underground Bunker?
  5. janisgrady

    janisgrady Patron

    It will be released on Amazon as a Kindle followed by paperback. Tony will announce it on his blog once it is ready for prerelease orders. We are doing final proofreading and correctiones this 4th of July weekend.
  6. Free to shine

    Free to shine Shiny & Free


    As part of one of the Aussie families who followed you all to Saint Hill, I am SO happy you are doing this. I so look forward to reading this!
    (Luckily only one family member followed you to the ship.)

    vumba likes this.
  7. Gizmo

    Gizmo Rabble Rouser

    Having interacted & gotten to somewhat know both Yvonne and Heber. Over the years, I've had a lot of respect for each of them - can't wait to read your book !

    No slight to Peter, but, he has always been someone I knew of rather than ever got to know.
  8. cakemaker

    cakemaker Patron Meritorious

    Any release date?
    Where can we pre-order it?
  9. janisgrady

    janisgrady Patron

    I am hoping to have the release date tomorrow. The book is with the publisher for final review. It will come out as an ebook first while the paperback is being printed.

    So stay tuned!
  10. cakemaker

    cakemaker Patron Meritorious

    Can't wait!
    What's the release schedule for #2 and 3?

    BTW, I admire your composure with a certain bozo at the Bunker! :thumbsup:
  11. janisgrady

    janisgrady Patron

    Thank you cakemaker.

    Book 2 is pretty much written and goes from the end of book one Oct 1970 until Oct 1975 when we all move off the ship to America. I need to add a few things here and there that I have since remembered. So that won't be too long, but book three which will cover Sept 1975 on will be much longer as I haven't even
    started it. It has taken me three years just to do the first two books! So don't hold your breath for book three.
  12. Free to shine

    Free to shine Shiny & Free

    Here's a wonderful review of the upcoming book.

  13. Free to shine

    Free to shine Shiny & Free

    I just want to post the cover picture in full, it says so much. Click for larger version.

  14. Veda

    Veda Sponsor

    :) Hi janisgrady,

    By any chance do you happen to have a copy of the Code of the Commodore's Messenger (or similar wording)? I saw it years ago, and it would be interesting to see again - and also have it on the record for all to see.
  15. janisgrady

    janisgrady Patron

    Sorry I can't help you.
  16. Churchill

    Churchill Gold Meritorious Patron

    I'm looking forward to reading your book, Janis.
    Did you happen to know Barbara Silver from your CMO days?
    Her father was Arthur Silver, from New York.
  17. Veda

    Veda Sponsor

    Thanks anyway.

    For those unfamiliar with this strange subject, here's a little background.

    From the 1946 'Affirmations':

    You cannot now accumulate karma for you are a master adept. Your voice is low and compelling to them... destroys their will to resist...

    Your writing has a deep hypnotic effect on people and they are always pleased with what you write...

    Your psychology is advanced and true and wonderful. It hypnotizes people. It predicts their emotions, for you are their ruler.





    I can make Napoleon look like a punk.
    From L. Ron Hubbard's 'Excalibur' letter, 1938​


    And from the 12 February 1967 Policy Letter 'Admin Know-How, the Responsibility of Leaders', a.k.a. The Bolivar Policy Letter - written shortly after the founding of the Sea Org - on the topic of how a subordinate should relate to his "power":

    [The power asks] 'What are those dead bodies doing at the door'. And if you [the subordinate] are clever, you never let it be known HE [the power] killed them - that weakens you and also hurts the power source. 'Well, boss about all those dead bodies, nobody at all will suppose you did it. She over there, those pink legs sticking out, didn't like me'. 'Well', he'll say if he really is a power, 'Why are you bothering me with it if it's done and you did it. Where's my blue ink?...

    ...always push power in the direction of anyone on whose power you depend. It may be more money for the power, or more ease, or a snarling defense of the power to the critic, or even the dull thud of one of his enemies in the dark, or the glorious blaze of a whole enemy camp as a birthday surprise...

    ...Real powers are developed by tight conspiracies of this kind... and if they are right and also manage their man
    [the power] and keep him from collapsing from overwork, bad temper or bad data, a kind of juggernaut builds up.


    I can make Captain Bligh look like a Sunday School teacher.
    1969, 'Discipline, SPs, and Admin'​


    The primary form of abuse by Hubbard of children was psychological. Denied normal childhood, and adolescence, they became extensions of a cult leader - and that was considered an honor and a privilege, with parents eagerly giving their children to the Commodore (a.k.a. "Source") so that they may serve him.

    These old posts cover a little of it.

    In saddle brown from former Commodore's Messenger, 'Cowboy':

    This is where the cowboy rides away. Love that George Strait song.

    Guys and gals, it has been a pleasure chatting with you. To have shared some experiences was cathartic.

    I have never been prouder than when the old man placed his hand on my shoulder and validated me for a complicated project which I took care of for him. I've also never been more devastated than when I was berated for some real or imagined transgression, my hand shaking as I struck a lighter and reached across to light the old man's cigarette. The other messengers would visibly pull back from me, knowing that being associated with me would perhaps make them also the subject or his ire.

    I've never been more emotional than when I would witness people's lives ripped asunder. I've been ordered to mete out punishments which I knew the receiving party didn't deserve. I've seen well intentioned staff members, pale with lack of sleep, waiting for words of approval, only to be chastised, or, in some cases, even worse.

    So many images flash through my mind as I consider again what i went through in Scn. The sight of the ship at dock as I flew overhead in a commercial plane, arriving for the first time. The reality of my bunk, the smell of stale sweat in the humid air, people off duty scouring the under-decks looking for cockroach nests, in order to earn the few extra dollars the extermination of the cockroach nests would bring in bounty.

    The first time I saw Hubbard, the emperor, surrounded by his entourage.... and I realized that.... he looked like a person. His face was pitted and craggy, his hair not the golden mane I'd expected but thinning and shot with gray and vestiges of the famous red from his photos, his corpulence, was not what I'd expected.

    And the first time I saw him scream at a messenger, this physically intimidating (to a child) adult shouting so loud at a cringing messenger that spittle was flying, the messenger whiter than her clothing, shaking under the intensity of his wrath.

    Was this the God-like entity who had opened the door to my spiritual salvation?

    Then, a moment watching Hubbard walking the decks beside HRH, seeing him as, of all things, a son, wanting approval from his father. What must Harry Ross have thought of his boy with his own ship, dressed as a Commodore and surrounded by scantily clad young girls?

    Long lines of crew in the airport as we left Curacao, Quentin smiling and being Quentin as we waited, only to arrive a few hours later in a land of milk and honey; endless hot water and the beautiful beaches of Daytona... the relief and the smiles obvious on everyone's faces at the change in lifestyle.

    Mindless orders to RPF those I thought Hubbard considered his friends, meter readings convincing him that his estimate of them was incorrect, and that they harbored some ill will, to see the RS/RPF craze strike like a plague, decimating the ranks of those around him, the circle growing closer and closer....only to eventually find out that these people's servitude, months or years in the RPF, were pointless, the people had been judged and convicted without a jury to a life in many ways worse than a prison... for only imagined infractions.

    My deepest secret, that I once didn't report an RS, because I knew what it would have meant to the person....

    The coldness I saw in Hubbard toward others, including his family, the distance he kept... the absence of the qualities I would have envisioned most in a spiritual leader.... qualities one might have imagined in Christ, or Ghandi, but Hubbard was bereft of such qualities. I was ordered to barge into someone's room at three in the morning and threaten to assign the man to the RPF if he didn't get his ass up and work more on a project, despite the fact that he'd been up for 24 hours, to find him in his wife's arms, stunned as I delivered the message... then his asking me how he could possibly satisfy Hubbard.... He wanted desperately to please the old man, but couldn't imagine how. I think he would have taken his own life if Hubbard wanted him to. The agony of trying his best but his best (which was good) not coming close to satisfying Hubbard. The vile and derisive names Hubbard called him by, the snide remarks to the messengers about this man...

    Steve Irwin's acknowledgement that he must be damned to the darkest of all Hells because he'd been slapped by Hubbard... Irwin had always been a corker, light hearted, jokingly calling Quentin, before his death, by his nick name, "Son of Source".

    Sleepless days spent vetting secrets from documents in fear that the FBI would raid any moment, afraid I'd fall asleep and miss blacking out, or cutting out some secret which the FBI would find and destroy Scn with, and it would be my fault because after two days with no sleep I fell asleep....

    Phil Valinsky dying in session at SU and the contortions to hide the truth... and then seeing a copy of his official granting of 21 years of leave, with orders to report back to duty in his new body... I remember thinking how come he got 21 years to live childhood in his new body before reporting back to duty, yet I started working at about 12. He get's a childhood and I don't? BTW, did Phil ever report back in his new body?

    Bribes, threats, manipulations, reaching out across the country to bend people to Hubbard's will.

    A man steadily losing more and more of his mind... Finally enfeebled, his hands shaking, gaunt, lucid only part of the time, confined to bed for most of the day for weeks on end... Human. Undivine. Unmiraculous.

    The bonding of my friends, my fellow messengers, our gazes at one another voicing what we could not speak of.... I don't mean to speak demeaningly of any military sacrifices made by our armed forces, but we messengers, in many ways, became a Band of Brothers. To be in your teens and living on a few hours sleep a night for weeks or months, the pressures placed upon us, the yelling... but, at the same time, craving approval... the feeling of being on top of the world when some deed one had performed was acknowledged with a "Well Done".

    Even as I left, my heart ached for Hubbard, for the conversations neither I nor anyone could ever have with him, remembering the lives he'd ruined... that I had sometimes ruined in his name, but still feeling a bond with him, though my candid assessment of the truth of Scn was forcing me to depart. Stockholm Syndrome? Maybe.

    In the decades since I left, when I've occasionally met up with a former comrade and heard of the tragedies befalling those who stayed behind, my heart ached for them. Of the legal manipulation to avoid the truth. Can the world not understand the pressures that a dedicated staff member would answer to that would make them give false testimony in a heart beat, gladly, to impeach detractors of the church, or to protect leaders of the church from prosecution?

    Shelly Miscavige, a girl I called my friend, what sort of life are you suffering through now?

    I'm deluged still with thoughts and sorrows and regrets, acceptance of the harm I directly caused others through following orders. Hitler's orders to his staff were not enough to free them from consequences for their War Crimes. I can make excuses, but, in many ways I caused harm. I remember convincing someone to join the SO, to bring her family and young children in, to see her a year later in the RPF, her kids being worked like adults, being haunted by the unspoken accusation in her glance, "Why did you take me and my family away from the world we knew, for this?" her gaze said to me. Whatever happened to her, I wonder. Did she and her children leave, or did I rob them of their childhood like mine was robbed from me?

    Yes, the cowboy rides away. I'll be back, perhaps. Thanks for your words of encouragement. The gratitude that many of you have expressed has been touching. I hope that for some, my musings have helped put things in perspective, and maybe, somewhere, some time, I will find that my words helped someone to make their life their own again. To perhaps look a little deeper at Scn, to question, to use their mind, to perhaps value their children and family a little bit more, and reflect on my experiences and realize that the time has come to use the stark light of reason to make decisions.

    If anything, I hoped I've shown that Hubbard, and the experiences of those around him, can not be summarily explained. Now, as I reflect, I pity him, what he must have internalized at the end, as his body wilted away....

    Instances of child abuse included placing children in the ship's, dangerous, chain locker for prolonged periods of time as punishment. The institutionalized abuse of the Children's RPF began in 1976. The psychological abuse of the Children's Security Check began in 1961 - which was used to age 12, after which children were to be subjected to adult Security Checks, also begun in 1961.


    And a little more from Cowboy.

    Regarding the ages of the Commodore's Messengers:

    Most went straight to the CMO, slightly over half I'd say, starting at 12 or so for many. A few held other posts and would enter a little bit later, after some non-CMO experience. Very, very, very few got in in their twenties. Mostly not where the old man was.

    _______And some more, beginning with 'A new Messenger'_______​

    A new messenger waited outside the door to the room that held his Majesty King Red. He was visibly shaking, nervous as all get out about meeting, and working with the old man. He was stuttering, going on about how awesome it must be being in the shadow of Source on a daily basis. He flinched when the old man's booming scream pierced through the doorway and another messenger, white-faced, came rushing out of the office with an armful of materials, the old man's voice screaming after her.

    The new guy blanched. "Come on, he can't be alone," I whispered to him. The guy nodded, but I had to prod him to get him to follow me into the room.

    I introduced him. The old man gave a grunt and pointed down at the pile of submissions which lay on the ground, where the messenger who'd been with him a moment ago until being dispatched on some urgent errand, had left them.

    I picked up the first, summarized what the submission was about. "Nooooh," the old man said, and reached for a cigarette.

    New Guy fumbled with the lighter and dropped it.

    New Guy knew something about the submission. He tried to explain the issue. "NOOOOOH," the old man said again. "You let them submit this crap?" he asked New Guy.

    New Guy just sat there, with his deer in the headlights look, and, unfortunately for him, nodded his head.

    "What the hell were you thinking?" the old man asked.

    New Guy couldn't figure out what to say.

    "Well, speak up man!"

    New guy remained immobile as the old man turned beet red and started yelling. "Get the hell out of here. Get off watch. You're no god-damned help," he told New Guy.

    I don't remember if he ever was allowed on watch again. Poor New Guy was slapped in the face with reality, rather than fantasy. He was crushed. He was demoted out of the messenger org, and never got the chance to make it to the top again. Hubbard criticized the hell out of him, saying his confront was out.

    It wasn't always easy to be yelled at by a God...

    _______But there were happy moments too for the Commodore_________​

    Mike Douglas, Kima's husband, he's dead now, he'd work special projects for the old man or Kima. You should have seen the old man's eyes light up when Mike showed up with a handful of diamonds which Hubbard had directed him to purchase. Boy, Hubbard was almost as excited as when he saw the bag so filled with Krugerands he could hardly lift it. Nothing like good old material goods to make a man salivate... get those old spiritual juices flowing...


    John McMaster ("First Real Clear" 1965, Declared SP 1969), from a 1985 interview:

    He [Hubbard] got the technology to the point where he had a sort of assembly line as he called it. And he told me how he was putting all these 'square ball bearings' on the beginning of the assembly line, and then turning them into 'round ball bearings' at the other end. That was his idea of 'standard tech'.


    Account of an over boarding from Alan Walter, student on the first Class VIII course:

    The scene with overboarding on the Original Class VIII Course was if an auditor did not get an F/N on their pc at examiner - they were thrown overboard.

    We would line up on the well-deck in the morning at 8.00 am - LRH would look down from the deck above and announce who would be thrown overboard.

    He was surrounded by his Aides. Also he was recording all of this on camera...

    I remember looking up at them - I was staring into the face of shear madness and evil

    Usually 8 to 10 people were thrown overboard each morning.

    It was about a 30 foot drop into a filthy feces laden water from the other ships and the Apollo directly releasing their sewage into the channel...

    This was October 1968.

    ....Ron had Julia Salmon thrown overboard... terribly overweight and could not swim.

    The people who threw her overboard struggled to get her over the side; she was terrified; she kept crying out "I cannot swim!" On her way down she hit the side of the ship - I could hear her screams - it was obvious she was injured and drowning.

    The people on the deck all stood around too afraid to do anything. Fearing to originate any action less the become the target of LRHs displeasure.

    I ran and jumped over the side and rescued her. I then pulled her over to the ladder that led up to the ground level of the was about 20 feet straight up. She could not climb the steps. I had my shoulders under her butt pushing her up..... no one still had come to help.......but at the top of that ladder stood LRH filming us.....such evil.......

    Anyway after an immense struggle with Julia's help I was able to push her up to the top of the ladder....finally some help arrived.

    Over the years the unthinkable thought pushed forward more and was 'that I observe that LRH was demonic at that time'. I did not want to know that, did not want to believe that.......that was too incredible to be believed - even for me - I did the usual make nothing of myself....'you're seeing things', 'what do you know', 'you've got overts' - much easier to blame self than confront what is.


    From Russell Miller's interview of David Mayo from August 1986:

    He [L Ron Hubbard] could be capable of incredible cruelty. On the ship there was an old man on the Royal Scotman [later renamed 'Apollo'] who he made push a peanut round the decks with his nose. He had to get down on his hands and knees, he had to go round the deck, quite a long distance in a race with one or two others also in trouble. The first one back got let off and the last one got a double penalty.

    It was really tough on this old guy, Charlie Reisdorf. The surface of the deck was very rough wood, prone to splinter, so after pushing peanuts with their noses, they all had raw, bleeding noses, leaving a trail of blood behind them. I not only saw it but the entire crew of the ship was mustered - a mandatory attendance - we were required to watch this punishment, to make an example of it for the rest of us. Reisdorf was in his late 50s probably. His two daughters were messengers, they were 11 or 12 at time and his wife was there also.

    It was hard to say which was worse to watch: this old guy with a bleeding nose or his wife and kids sobbing and crying at being forced to watch this. Hubbard was standing there calling the shots, yelling, 'Faster, Faster!'. It was indignity, degradation and breaking a person's will, and making people watch. It was disgusting...

    They used to have people locked in the chain locker, including small children. It was very dangerous because if the anchor started to slip and started running out, it would probably turn a body into a pulp in no time at all...

    He [LRH] had a birthday party on March 13, 1968; there was a woman who he ordered locked in the chain locker. During the party he had brought her out. She was filthy, covered with dirt and rust, and had not been allowed to wash or change clothes - she had been in there for a week... he brought her out to the party. He said he was giving her a reprieve and permitting her to come to the party, as if that was a nice gesture. She wasn't allowed to change. She was brought to the party and had to stay, and later was returned [to the chain locker]... it was flaunting her degradation...

    Why did people stand by?...

    From time to time, Hubbard would cancel such activities like the chain locker, and blame it on someone else... He would start such pronouncements with, 'It has just come to my attention...'

    The length of time for children would vary, but no one was less than a day...

    Reisdorf [peanut pushing] affair - if someone tried to do something, it would have made it worse. Hubbard said that maritime law prevailed... He said that under maritime law, he had total power over everyone on the vessel...

    And one brief excerpt concerning events from the late 1970s:

    He told me he was obsessed with an insatiable lust for power and money. He said it very emphatically. He thought it wasn't possible to get enough. He didn't say it as if it was a fault, just his frustration that he couldn't get enough.​


    Probably the main reason people tolerated these, and the other abuses by Hubbard, was that Hubbard had convinced them that he was the "Source" of the "only hope for Man," and the "Source" of the "route to Total Freedom" and out of the "labyrinth."
  18. cakemaker

    cakemaker Patron Meritorious

    I'll hold my breath and turn blue if it helps! :p

    You have so much priceless information that it would be heartbreaking to lose if it doesn't get recorded somehow, even just raw audio reminisces.

    As an aside, do you know what happened to Nikki Freeman? She must have a wealth of stories.
    I'm also surprised that the two surviving LRH children that are out of the church haven't written their own books.
  19. JustSheila

    JustSheila Crusader



    Counting the minutes...
  20. janisgrady

    janisgrady Patron

    Yes, I knew Barbara, we were good friends.