Interview With JDC

From the interview with JDC of Olympia, WA conducted by Patience Rogge at the Fort Worden History Center on April 13, 2004. JDC was a resident of the Juvenile Diagnostic and Treatment Center for six to eight weeks at about age 12. Although his memories of the time were vague, he related how it affected him:

“I think my family was happy that I was here. I was a troublemaker quite a bit growing up. I stayed in trouble a lot. Because I was so young I never even thought about life changes or anything else. You just did what you were told and hoped you went to one of the lighter reformatories down the line.

As far as I can remember, everybody was treated well here, because the better you looked here, the easier place you were going to go to from here. You didn’t want to cause any problems. I ended up at Cedar Creek Forestry Camp which was more or less a workfarm. There you worked five days a week. You’d go out and plant trees, do some slash and burn; or during the summer season when the forest fires were hot, then we would go fight the forest fires.

When I came out, I was out for about a year and then I went in the military. …Probably the smartest move I ever made was going in the Army because it took me from a young punk to grown up real fast. I stayed in 20 some years and I’ve served all over, Korea, Vietnam, Germany–been around the world quite a few times.

For me, it probably ended up saving my life in the long run, because I’d have probably been killed doing drugs or something down the road if I hadn’t gone in.”

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