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  1. #1
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    Rose Lena Cole, 16, Oakland, 1972 - #1

    Rose Cole was born December 23, 1956 in Flint, Michigan. Rose's full name is Rose Leanna Cole, but her family says she rarely used her middle name.

    In 1972, at the age of 15, she was sent to Synanon Foundation in Oakland, CA for some kind of addiction (I'm assuming drugs).

    For those who aren't familiar with Synanon, it was an unscrupulous drug treatment center whose clients rarely had a chance to leave once they arrived. Rose ran away from Synanon some time in late 1972 and wrote two letters to her family after leaving Synanon. To quote her sister-in-law:

    Was sent to the Synanon Foundation in Oakland, California in 1972
    She wrote 2 letters from there Oct/Nov 1972
    A third letter in Dec 72 were she explains that she ran away from the synanon
    The 4th and last letter was dated on her sixteen birthday

    I only have the envelope for the letter from the Synanon.

    I can type the letters again (lost my computer files on this) if that helps.
    I have written the SIL requesting data on Rose's description. I have also asked her to re-type the letters, since I assume they might offer more details about her circumstances at Synanon.

    I've checked death and marriage records in California, and death records in all states, and no Rose Cole shows up. Nor does she show up on any public records or phone book directory.

    As her SIL stated, they have not heard from her since December of 1972. Rose would be 49 now, and would turn 50 this December.

    Once additional information is received on Rose, I'll post it.


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    bcf, Kat

  3. #2
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    Here are some posts done on Rose Cole from another thread:


    #33
    Today, 08:39 AM
    HeartofTexas

    Quote:


    Heart of Texas found this....

    http://familytreemaker.genealogy.co.../0024photo.html

    As a follow-up to the above girl (Rose Cole), I've been in touch with her family, and she was 15-16 at the time of her disappearance. Her family sent her to Synanon Foundation in Oakland, CA in 1972 (I'm assuming for drug problems) and after a few letters from her, and after she ran away from there a few months later, she's never been heard from since. Her DOB was 12-23-56. Since no crime was committed that we know of, and since she's an assumed run-away, it won't be appropriate for me to do a thread on WS on her.

    #34 Today, 08:50 AM
    Shadow205

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by HeartofTexas
    As a follow-up to the above girl (Rose Cole), I've been in touch with her family, and she was 15-16 at the time of her disappearance. Her family sent her to Synanon Foundation in Oakland, CA in 1972 (I'm assuming for drug problems) and after a few letters from her, and after she ran away from there a few months later, she's never been heard from since. Her DOB was 12-23-56. Since no crime was committed that we know of, and since she's an assumed run-away, it won't be appropriate for me to do a thread on WS on her.

    Heartoftexas,

    Based on the research that we did last night on the Synanon Foundation, I think that a thread on Rose would be a good idea. If nothing else, start it in "Missing" or "Missing But Not Forgotten". I feel that Rose is more than just a runaway. Unless she was one of the really lucky ones, Synanon did not allow people to just leave. I would be interested in trying to help locate her.
    __________________









    #35

    Today, 09:22 AM
    HeartofTexas

    Thanks so much, Shadow. I do want to point out, though, that her sister-in-law said she did run away from Synanon. Not that she may have gotten too far! I've written the SIL this morning asking for a description of Rose (height, color of hair, eyes, etc.) and will post that info when I get it.







    #36
    Today, 10:10 AM
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by HeartofTexas
    Thanks so much, Shadow. I do want to point out, though, that her sister-in-law said she did run away from Synanon. Not that she may have gotten too far! I've written the SIL this morning asking for a description of Rose (height, color of hair, eyes, etc.) and will post that info when I get it.
    Many tried to run away from Synanon but were brought back. I hope that she was successfull in getting away from there. Could you also find out exactly why they sent her there. I assume from what I have read it was for some type of addiction. I really hate to but we can start looking at Jane Does for a possible match too. Find out for sure which site she was at. It looks like they had more than one. Where is the postmark on the letter from and the date?
    __________________
    #37


    Today, 10:13 AM
    HeartofTexas

    She didn't say what she was being treated for, but I assume it was drugs. She was at the Oakland, CA location. I've already checked the Jane Doe's this morning in both California and Nevada. Nevada's didn't start until 1979. California had one possibility that I found:

    http://www.doenetwork.us/cases/62ufca.html Date of death was September 26, 1979

    Other than that, I didn't find any that might match. I'm awaiting a description on Rose, which might help with identifying her from the Jane Does.

    #38


    Today, 10:15 AM
    HeartofTexas

    Shadow, here's what the SIL wrote re the letters:
    Quote:
    Was sent to the Synanon Foundation in Oakland, California in 1972
    She wrote 2 letters from there Oct/Nov 1972
    A third letter in Dec 72 were she explains that she ran away from the synanon
    The 4th and last letter was dated on her sixteen birthday

    I only have the envelope for the letter from the Synanon.

    I can type the letters again (lost my computer files on this) if that helps.


    #39


    Today, 10:19 AM
    HeartofTexas

    Shadow, I just emailed the SIL and asked her to re-type the letters for us. I told her to start with the last letter first, and then the next to the last, as I think the last 2 letters probably will hold the most clues. The SIL has small children and a job, so it may take her a few days to do the letters. I'll let you know when I get them.






  4. #3
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    Was sent to the Synanon Foundation in Oakland, California in 1972
    She wrote 2 letters from there Oct/Nov 1972
    A third letter in Dec 72 were she explains that she ran away from the synanon
    The 4th and last letter was dated on her sixteen birthda
    I just received an email from Rose's sister-in-law (married to Rose's brother), and she said she would start re-typing the letters referenced above today.

    The SIL also said she would call some of the family members to get a description of Rose (color hair, color eyes, etc.). I'll post any info I get from the SIL.


  5. #4
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    A quick check of some of my resources shows a Rose Leanna Cole who graduated from a high school in NE in June of '73, at which time the Rose in question would have been almost 17.

    Most likely a coincidence, but the name does not appear to be all that common and the similiarity in age makes the match intriguing.


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  7. #5
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    I'd never heard of Synanon before, so I did some looking and HOLY COW. Here are two of the articles I've found; they give me chills..

    http://www.ptreyeslight.com/columns/...ly1126_03.html

    http://thestraights.com/theprogram/synanon-story2.htm


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  9. #6
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    I have never heard of them before. That is some scary stuff. I am glad Rose got away, and I hope she is OK. Seems weird that since she had been letting her family know that she was OK, that the letters stopped.


  10. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by shadowangel
    A quick check of some of my resources shows a Rose Leanna Cole who graduated from a high school in NE in June of '73, at which time the Rose in question would have been almost 17.

    Most likely a coincidence, but the name does not appear to be all that common and the similiarity in age makes the match intriguing.
    The above was from post #4 on page 1 of this thread. Did anyone ever look at this Rose Cole closer? Rose would have just turned 16 not 17 but according to Julie (former Synanon member) that was pretty common for kids to finish High School at a very early age.
    Retired 08/03/03


  11. #8
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    Shadow, Isabella later discovered that Rose's middle name was actually Lena, and not Leanna. Don't know if that helps you or not.


  12. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeartofTexas
    Rose Cole was born December 23, 1956 in Flint, Michigan. Rose's full name is Rose Leanna Cole, but her family says she rarely used her middle name.

    In 1972, at the age of 15, she was sent to Synanon Foundation in Oakland, CA for some kind of addiction (I'm assuming drugs).

    For those who aren't familiar with Synanon, it was an unscrupulous drug treatment center whose clients rarely had a chance to leave once they arrived. Rose ran away from Synanon some time in late 1972 and wrote two letters to her family after leaving Synanon. To quote her sister-in-law:

    I have written the SIL requesting data on Rose's description. I have also asked her to re-type the letters, since I assume they might offer more details about her circumstances at Synanon.

    I've checked death and marriage records in California, and death records in all states, and no Rose Cole shows up. Nor does she show up on any public records or phone book directory.

    As her SIL stated, they have not heard from her since December of 1972. Rose would be 49 now, and would turn 50 this December.

    Once additional information is received on Rose, I'll post it.
    Oakland, California is a rough area.

    "The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense." - Tom Clancy
    __________________
    This is the humble opinion of Goody Trugritt.


  13. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goody
    Oakland, California is a rough area.
    Oakland CA has rough areas but the entire city unfortunately gets stereotyped.

    I went to the library today to look at microfilm on the Synanon. I happened to talk to the librarian who knows a professor that wrote a book about the Synanon. I have his address and # and will be contacting him tomorrow.


  14. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by itsreenw
    Oakland CA has rough areas but the entire city unfortunately gets stereotyped.

    I went to the library today to look at microfilm on the Synanon. I happened to talk to the librarian who knows a professor that wrote a book about the Synanon. I have his address and # and will be contacting him tomorrow.
    Is this the book itreenw?

    The Rise and Fall of Synanon : A California Utopia (Hardcover)
    by Rod Janzen "During the second half of the twentieth century Synanon was one of the most successful and most innovative communal societies in the United States..."
    Retired 08/03/03


  15. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow205
    Is this the book itreenw?

    The Rise and Fall of Synanon : A California Utopia (Hardcover)
    by Rod Janzen "During the second half of the twentieth century Synanon was one of the most successful and most innovative communal societies in the United States..."
    Yup!! That's the name of it. I actually wanted to find a book called "Escape from Utopia" but when I mentioned it to the librarian he seemed very familiar with Synanon. He also said Rose wasn't the only one that "ran away" and never made it back to the parents. He told me about his acquaintance, Rod that wrote a book about it. He pulled a card out and gave it to me with this man's email, mailing address and phone #. Small world. I am going to inquire about the # of people that are still unaccounted for. He said to also research the Pt. Reyes Light for more info.???


  16. #13
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    Books about synanon

    Quote Originally Posted by itsreenw
    Yup!! That's the name of it. I actually wanted to find a book called "Escape from Utopia" but when I mentioned it to the librarian he seemed very familiar with Synanon. He also said Rose wasn't the only one that "ran away" and never made it back to the parents. He told me about his acquaintance, Rod that wrote a book about it. He pulled a card out and gave it to me with this man's email, mailing address and phone #. Small world. I am going to inquire about the # of people that are still unaccounted for. He said to also research the Pt. Reyes Light for more info.???
    itsreenw,

    Escape from Utopia: My ten years in Synanon (Unknown Binding)
    by William F Olin

    For Sale at amazon.com

    The Light on Synanon: How a country weekly exposed a corporate cult--and won the Pulitzer Prize (Unknown Binding)
    by Dave Mitchell

    Availability: Available from these sellers.


    10 used & new available from $1.90
    Retired 08/03/03


  17. #14
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    Oakland

    Quote Originally Posted by itsreenw
    Oakland CA has rough areas but the entire city unfortunately gets stereotyped.
    Have you read Chris Darden's book. He grew up in Oakland.

    "The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense." - Tom Clancy
    __________________
    This is the humble opinion of Goody Trugritt.


  18. #15
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    I lived in San Fran in 1975-76 myself, and remember it was a really weird time to be there. Patty Hearst was kidnapped, the SLA was setting fire to apartment buildings, etc. I remember reading in the newspaper (I think I was in Texas at the time) about the rattlesnake in the mailbox. As soon as I heard the name Synanon, I knew there was the potential for trouble in this case.


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