All of them, those in power, and those who want the power, would pamper us, if we agreed to overlook their crookedness by wilfully restricting our activities.
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Los Angeles Times (Jun2 24, 1990): "The Mind Behind the Religion"
by Joel Sappell and Robert Welkos
According to those who knew him well, Hubbard was neither affectionate nor much of a family man. He seemed closer to his handpicked messengers than to his own seven children, one of whom he later denied fathering.
"His kids rarely, if ever, got to see him," Gillham said, until his wife Mary Sue "insisted on weekly Sunday night dinners."
Hubbard expected his children to live up to the family name and do nothing that would reflect badly on him or the church. And for that reason, his son Quentin was a problem.
Quentin had once tried suicide with a drug overdose and was confused about his sexual orientation -- a fact that was quietly discussed among his friends and at the highest levels of the church.
"He thought Quentin was an embarrassment," said Laurel Sullivan, Hubbard's former public relations officer, who had a falling out with the organization in 1981. "And he told me that several times."
In 1976, Quentin parked on a deserted road in Las Vegas and piped the exhaust into his car. At the age of 22, he killed himself.
When Hubbard was told of the suicide, "he didn't cry or anything," according to a former aide. His first reaction, she said, was to express concern over the possibility of publicity that could be used to discredit Scientology.
Quentin was found unkempt with a beard stubble, a state that no one who knew Quentin could accept. (He was ultra-meticulous in his appearance.) Or that the license plate of the car was missing and found under a rock some distance away. Or that his wallet was gone, making identification impossible. Or that a near-empty bottle of liquor was found, as if he had been drinking, when Quentin did not. Or that there were needle marks on his arms, when he did not use drugs.
«Quentin Hubbard, L. Ron Hubbard's son and a very close friend of mine, committed suicide at age 22 because he could see no way out of the trap he was in. Having been born into Scientology, he could not envision living outside of the cult, but could not stand living in it. It is too late for Quentin. He is gone and no one can undo that the damage that was done to him, but it is not too late for others. If writing this gives someone the insight to get their loved one out of Scientology, then perhaps, my years in Scientology will have served some purpose.»
Quentin had tried to measure up to his father's expectations - he was one of the few top-grade Class Twelve Auditors - but he did not share his father's temperament. By all accounts he was far too gentle to govern Scientology, or indeed to govern anything. All he wanted was to fly airplanes, and he often pleaded with his father to allow him to leave the Sea Org and do just that. He had disappeared several times in an attempt to escape. There was also an aspect of his nature which could never be reconciled with his father's philosophy: Quentin was a homosexual. There is little doubt that his death was self-inflicted, as he had attempted suicide before.11
Mary Sue broke down and wailed when she heard the news. She later tried to persuade friends that her son had died from encephalitis. Quentin's father's response was cold-blooded, he was furious that his son had let him down. There was an immediate cover-up. Documents were stolen from the coroner's office and taken to Hubbard. In accordance with Hubbard's policy regarding bad news, Scientologists were not told about Quentin's death. Some who found out were told he had been murdered.
I walked into his office at La Quinta at Rifle and took breakfast into him. He saw messengers running about outside, and asked what was going on. I tried to distract him, then Nicky and a GO person went in and told him. The death report said there was sperm in the anal canal and he had died of asphyxiation of carbon monoxide. He took it reasonably well, didn't cry, didn't get emotional. He threw the death report at me and said, "Read that!" He went in and told Mary Sue and she screamed. She screamed for ten minutes, keening. He was her favourite son. It kept going - I couldn't believe she had that much in her lungs. It was horrendous. The only time I had really seen her cry before was when Vixie her Corgi dog died and I gave it mouth to mouth resuscitation to try and revive it. LRH came back and said, "She took it very badly." He was furious, really angry that Quentin had done it. The sperm in the anus didn't help much. Next time I saw the medical report there was no mention of sperm. I saw it about two months later. I saw another death certificate that said, "scar on the heart, death from unknown causes". I always thought he was homosexual. He was trying to get out of the Church.
This kid was a miserable, miserable boy. He was good at the tech. His father crucified him - had him com-eved [tried in a Scientology court], thrown in the RPF [forced labour], declared out-tech [heretical]. He was not a boy with a manly demeanour. He was a little kid out of his depth. He knew he could never compete with his father. He was in a no win situation. Hubbard put him into isolation after a suicide attempt, then put in the RPF.
Another son, Quentin, was found in a coma in a car on a back road near Las Vegas, a hose running from the exhaust pipe into the car. He died several days later in hospital without regaining consciousness.
There were no licence plates on the car and no identification on the 20-year-old Mr. Hubbard. His identification papers were found under a rock nearby. His death was officially called a suicide and attributed to carbon monoxide poisoning. There has been no explanation of the peculiar circumstances.
Police say that when the victim was finally identified efforts were made to reach his parents, Ron and Mary Sue Hubbard, but without success. The couple would not even talk to investigators on the phone. The police say Scientology spokesmen told them that the Hubbards believed their son had been killed in an attempt to get his father to come out in the open.
Channel 4 (UK, 1997): "Secret Lives - L. Ron Hubbard" @
Hubbard even consigned his own son, Quentin, who was a senior auditor on the ship, to the RPF.
MIKE GOLDSTEIN: "Quentin really was a real sweet kid. He was a real nice guy, and very soft-spoken and it was very difficult for him being Hubbard's son, and being put in this very high position, and I don't think he was that interested in it. He just wanted to be a pilot and also the fact that he was gay and that's a very tough thing in Scientology, to be gay. Especially that kid, to be Hubbard's son, and to be this top technical person, and to be gay. Oh, that would be a horrible thing to be wrestling with."
Quentin was sent to the RPF, after he committed the sin of trying to commit suicide. Two years later, he succeeded.
JIM DINCALCI: "Hubbard saw it as a betrayal, because everything was referenced around him, the world was doing everything to him. This technology that was supposed to work, didn't even work on the senior person of all technology, you know, Hubbard and his son. No, he just saw that as an attack from his son. You know, the love was gone. He had lost love."
The pressures of being a "number one son" of the "Savior of Mankind," were perhaps reflected in what appears to have been the suicide — by an overdose of drugs — of Quentin, Hubbard's oldest son by Mary Sue (Ron Jr.'s half brother). Quentin's body was found in a car near McCurran Airport in Las Vegas in early 1977. He went into a coma and died in a hospital after 14 days. He was 22 years of age. Some 18 months prior to that time, my wife — while taking a Scientology course in Daytona Beach, Florida, in 1975 — observed Quentin running away from his father, who was coming down on an elevator. She describes his reaction upon discovering that Hubbard was on the elevator: "He paled dramatically and exclaimed, 'Oh shit, it's Dad, I've got to get out of here!'" He sprinted up several flights of stairs. He had previously confided in her that he desperately needed help regarding his problems with his father. She says his emotion was "terror." She observed him again in early 1977, in Florida at the "Flag Land Base," not long before his death, looking devastated, having again been placed in a "lowered ethics condition." It does not appear to have been a wonderful gift of fate to have been born the oldest son of L. Ron Hubbard.
DENNIS: "I see that you got some more reads on the 53 after it had FN'd." [swallowing] "How do you think this happened?"
QUENTIN: "I false reported." [still zooming his hand through the air]
DENNIS: "You... false... reported?" [beginning to stutter] "Uh-on the w-worksheets?" [knowing that this was one of the highest crimes an auditor could commit, and would require ethics handling and retraining "from the bottom up"]
QUENTIN: "Yea. I false reported that the 53 FNed." [this said as casually as if telling me he ate cereal for breakfast]
DENNIS: "Uh..." [struck with the import of the moment]
QUENTIN: "I always do."
DENNIS: "You mean..."
QUENTIN: "I mean I always false report when I have to FN a 53. I disagree with having to do that on PCs. It never does anything for the PC and it costs him hours of auditing. I think it's better to just false report and get on with it."
DENNIS: "?......." [dumbstruck]
QUENTIN: "I think a lot of my father's stuff doesn't work. So I false report whenever I need to. Personally, I think my father's crazy."
Maren said Hubbard was in Las Vegas for a vacation, specifically to enroll in a flight training school. He was on a three-week vacation and as a result no one had reported him missing.
Hubbard's son Quentin also died under mysterious circumstances in 1976. He had disappeared from his home in Clearwater, Florida, and was found unconscious in a car next to the Las Vegas airport. (Coroner's report is attached as Exhibit U. He died unidentified, as a "John Doe.") The engine of the car was on and a hose ran from the exhaust pipe (although it appeared to have fallen off when the authorities arrived) to the window, making it appear to be a suicide. But, like his father's death, there were a number of nagging questions. For example, Quentin was found unkempt with a beard stubble, a state that no one who knew Quentin could accept. (He was ultra-meticulous in his appearance.) Or that the license plate of the car was missing and found under a rock some distance away. Or that his wallet was gone, making identification impossible. Or that a near-empty bottle of liquor was found, as if he had been drinking, when Quentin did not. Or that there were needle marks on his arms, when he did not use drugs.