An Army of Convicts
- CHAPTER 1 -
He was christened Adam Tallchief Harcrow. Adam was the name of his paternal
grandfather and Tall Chief was the name of his maternal Cherokee grandfather. At
nine Adam was a healthy normal kid. His mother, Carman, half Cherokee and half
white, was a registered nurse at one of the UMA Quick Care Clinics in North Las
Vegas, Nevada. His Father, Clarence, was a sergeant on the North Las Vegas Police
Department. Adam was their only child.
Adam had skipped the fourth grade and was now attending Greenbrier Elementary
School as a fifth grader although he was only nine. Carman, Clarence and Adam were
a happy family. They were buying a brand new home in a new tract of three bedroom,
two bath, stucco houses with red tile roofs, which most of the housing tracts in the Las
Vegas Valley were in those days.
When Adam was nine, his father started suffering intermittent stomach pain. Clarence
thought it was just indigestion. At Carman's insistence he made an appointment for a
checkup. The Doctor had ordered the usual tests and then ordered more tests. Finally
the diagnosis was made, it was not good news and the family was devastated.
Although only in his early thirties, Clarence had been diagnosed with stomach cancer
at a most advanced stage.
He was forced to resign from the police department and he underwent three surgeries
over the next two years. It had spread to all his organs before it had ever been
discovered. He underwent chemotherapy for several months and while on home
hospice care Clarence passed away peacefully one morning when Adam was in
school. The body had been removed before Adam came home. There was a large
funeral, attended it seemed, by the whole North Las Vegas Police Department. It was
a beautiful service and Clarence was laid to rest.
His father's passing had been difficult for Adam and it left a big void in his life. With
his fathers life insurance and his mother's employment they were able to keep their
home and maintain a decent standard of living. There was no abundance of money
and Adam learned the value of a dollar early on.
During the two years of his father's convalescence Adam had spent a lot of time with
him. They had taken turns reading the Classics to each other. They had discussed all
kinds of things that were very enlightening and fascinating to the boy. Their
discussions were about things that most boys his age had never been exposed to.
Adam had enrolled in a local Kids Karate School when he was eleven and progressed
rapidly. He obtained his black belt when he was thirteen. Along the way Adam had
played soccer, basketball, little league baseball and Pop Warner football. He liked all
sports and was better than average at all of them. He was the quarterback on his Pop
Warner football team and the pitcher on the Wildcats Little League baseball team.
The Wildcats won the league championship the last year that he played and Adam was