The overall death toll rose by 20% in one day

Sonja Larson
Christina Powell
Christa Hoyt
Tracy Paules
Manuel Taboada

Danny Rolling



UPDATE: At ‘s suggestion, I have changed the style of this entry so that the murderer’s name is NOT in bold, and his victims’ names are. I apologize for giving the impression that I thought he deserved more emphasis than the people he killed. (2006-10-27)



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24 responses to “The overall death toll rose by 20% in one day

  1. momster1

    Tracy Paules and Manny Taboada were grads of American High in Miami. She was Homecoming Queen, he was a football player. They were cherished and are missed.

  2. sylvar

    Damn, that sucks. I guess their teachers are still hurting. I’m sorry it happened.

  3. wedash

    Regardless of one’s feeling on the death penalty, it is insulting to these 5 people and their families to post his name alongside theirs as though he is equal.

  4. sylvar

    I disagree. Each of them was deliberately killed, and each killing was morally wrong. Although his victims’ families have no obligation to show sympathy to his family (as the community around the West Nickel Mines Amish School did, comforting the family of the man who murdered five young people there), I hope some of them will.

  5. sshaf1130

    While I recognize your right to post whatever you choose on your own LJ page and respect your objections to the death penalty, I feel compelled to tell you that this is offensive – especially to those of us who were there and lived the nightmare.

    His name should not be listed with those whose bodies he desecrated… whose lives HE ended. This dishonors their memories.

  6. sylvar

    I appreciate that you and Sheryl are speaking respectfully and honestly. I wasn’t in Gainesville at the time, but it creeped me out, and I didn’t like being in Gainesville in 1992 knowing that one of his victims had been a big strong guy like me. So I felt *some* of the fear that y’all did.

    I’m sorry that I’ve offended you. I’m very glad to know you still think highly of me (because if you didn’t, you wouldn’t have bothered posting).

  7. cardinalximinez

    Your mistake, IMHO, in grouping Rolling with the others is this:

    Those five kids were innocent victims.

    Yes, they are all deliberately killed, and perhaps they were all morally wrong, but Rolling was far from an innocent victim.

  8. sylvar

    Tu as raison. That is an unmistakable salient point here, and thank you for making it.

    I’m not sure why exactly it matters to me in this case that his death came earlier or less naturally than it otherwise would have. He would have died anyway, eventually, and there’s no disputing that he murdered innocent people. It just *does* bother me.

    I’m not even sure that “we shouldn’t kill people because it’s wrong/criminal to kill people” holds water; I mean, it would be wrong and criminal of me to lock you up in a cage, and yet there’s not much debate about whether it’s appropriate to do *that* to a convicted criminal.

  9. cardinalximinez

    Tu as raison.

    Thanks. I learned something new today. Thank goodness for web translators.

    Also, you’re very welcome. I think that’s the importance of getting several perspectives, and even though I sometimes disagree with yours, I always appreciate hearing it.

    It just *does* bother me.

    You know, it bothers me, too. But it bothers me in a different way, and not nearly as much as the others.

    I frequently cry when when I have to euthanize a pet, but I still do it (or have a vet do it).

    I mean, it would be wrong and criminal of me to lock you up in a cage, and yet there’s not much debate about whether it’s appropriate to do *that* to a convicted criminal.

    Exactly. Though there are a lot of people who pay good money to get locked up in a cage… ;)

  10. cadrys

    Wow. Just…wow.

    Moral equivalence taken to a new low.

    Principaled disbelief in capital punishment is one thing, but treating a rabid dog the same as its victims is insulting, idiotic, and immature.

  11. sshaf1130

    Yesterday was very strange for me (and it sounds like I wasn’t alone in that). There were a lot of memories from that semester rattling around in my head.

    Truthfully, I am conflicted about the death penalty. I do not “celebrate” his death, but I admit to finding some relief and peace with it. I also realize that, I do not have a better answer at this time other than to say we need to spend our money on prevention.

    By the way, I’ve always thought highly of you. This doesn’t change that.

  12. knobody

    it’s not a matter of who was deliberately killed. it’s a matter of choice. the victims did not have a choice. that monster broke into their homes and did unspeakable things to them, one of them a high school acquaintance of mine. he chose his actions, knowing the penalty. they did not. my friend was raped, mutilated, beheaded and posed against her will. he chose a course of action that he knew could lead to his death by execution or even by self defense. that’s the difference between innocent victims and death row monsters. that is why their names should not be listed together.

  13. pappy74

    While I’m generally ambivalent regarding the death penalty, in this case I have no issue with it. There wasn’t a question whether it a was a conscious decision on Danny’s part to commit the crimes.

    And I have to agree with the others here. I do think it’s pretty, um, offensive? No, not offensive… Disappointing? Nah, I think no less of you. Perhaps disconcerting that you’d actually think of the killings as equivalent.

  14. tealfroglette

    PUtting the murderer’s name in bold is highly self agrandizing or politcally motivate trype that gives journalism and people who are trying to change other people’s views a really bad name in my opinion.

    I basically say how dare you put his name in bold when he is worth no more than any other person, and most would argue much less, but that’s a different story.

    I think your motivation for the bolding shows that it’s not just that you don’t want people to kill, you want to piss them off, hurt them, or basically make some point that shows he’s worth more.

    He’s not. that’s wrong in my opinion to put his name in bold.

  15. tealfroglette

    i just read the other comments, and i do have to say that i do think less of you for bolding one person’s name over another.

    If it were a wedding and you bolded the bride and groom, and not the wedding party or parents, that’s different, the wedding is about the couple.

    If you were putting a list of gravestone names in a post about your family and you bolded them because you were showing ‘these are my family’ the other people here aren’t my relatives, that’s different.

    What you have done here tho is not fair to the other people. They deserve bolding too, or he doesn’t deserve to be bold.

    HOpefully you will actually read this, because i think it’s a seriously valid point.

  16. sylvar

    I think you’re misreading my intention. His name is in bold because I’m not merely transcribing the photograph; his name is in bold because it’s new information. I put him at the bottom of the list for two reasons — one, because it’s in chronological order, and two, because he belongs at the bottom for what he did.

    However, my intention doesn’t prevent you from feeling hurt, and I’m sorry about that.

  17. sylvar

    This is an excellent suggestion and I will do it immediately.

  18. tealfroglette

    i’m glad you explained your intention to me, because i really couldn’t figure out why you had done that other than the above reasons. it just doesn’t make sense to me that you’d not understand the ramifications of bolding one person above another. If you fixed it (i’m on dialup so it’s slow) then i’m really glad you did so.

    And i guess new information is in the ‘time’ of the reader… the newness of it.

    Some days i’m not on the pc at all, and with tornado warnings etc don’t have the news on except for the noaa weather which doesn’t include most daily events.

    I did not follow the terrorizing trail of rolling b/c i wanted to put that fear and scared hunted animal part of my life behind me. he was after short brownhaired girls and i had to go to night classes at norman, across the street from regular campus with no extra UPD help. We asked for it and were denied by UPD. I’m sure there’s a letter on campus somewhere with me begging for help to my car at nine pm because Dr. Todd wouldn’t walk us, and we couldn’t park in the norman hall lot for the start of class.

    So it’s a lot of ‘people didn’t care about us women and men besides being hunted that make me upset. That doens’t usually play a part in the reactions i have now, but maybe it did? i can’t know for certain.

    The bolding just felt like way bad media ‘get attention’ no matter who we hurt type of stuff.

  19. tealfroglette

    Hey, your change really makes a difference to me. Thanks!

    and putting me up there is kinda weird, but i’m glad i was able to explain why i was so upset about the post, and that you think maybe i was right.

  20. sylvar

    I’ve worked at the CIRCA lab in Norman Hall. I wouldn’t have wanted to walk that close to Frat Row at night anyway, if I were as bodaciously cute as you are.

  21. tealfroglette

    Norman is nowhere near frat row afaik. I’m confused what you mean… Even the Commuter lot when i was there was across and down from the JWayneReitz Union. That would have been the closest parking ‘on campus’ at four forty five pm giving me enough time to get to a five pm starting block of classes at norman hall.

    I know there were some other unpaved commuter lots under trees which i think are now buildings by the ‘bandshell’ if that still even exists.

    On the last tour, Ed les, kattyt.great, Toad, Jesse and i went to Weil, Reitz Union, CSE, GPA but not anywhere near the bandshell.

    We all really wanted permission to park at Weil. We were coming from classrooms scattered all over Alachua county or our homes and it was fairly freaky.

    And thanks for the cute compliment, *blush*

  22. sylvar

    Oh, I remembered a lot of Greek housing down there. Guess I’m misremembering…

  23. knobody

    sorority row is near norman, not frat row. and i thought the circa lab in norman closed before i started working for them in late 1988, although maybe it was converted to a private lab and not staffed by bvi’s. weil hall was, at the time i worked there, the closest public lab to frat row.

  24. tealfroglette

    we had a lab at norman h all with apple two e’s and some pcs. the pcs were horribly infected by some virus that would transfer from disk to other places. This happened in 89,9,91, or 92. i finished my master’s degree at uf in 92 maybe. I froget. i was working and getting the degree, then left g’ville.
    Maybe there are more sorority houses now closer in than when i was there. there were frat houses (but not frat row)much further north on the road because i lived at college terrace at one point and had to walk by them to get home.

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