My story of sexual abuse and molestation:
When I was 12, my father decided to leave our family for a life with God. My mother decided she was too embarrassed to live as a divorced woman in the town she grew up in, so she moved us all to Lakeville, CT, on Indian Mountain Road, directly across from IMS.
Us kids were all in culture shock, moving from a New York upscale suburb to the quiet, time- warped area known as the Berkshires. My first school experience (8th grade) at Salisbury Central was good, and I made several new friends that I’m still friends with to this day.
Then along came this guy, Art Wilkinson, who my mother thought would be a good, fatherlike male role model for me and would help me with my athletics. Art was the Towns Recreation Director who was recently hired from Springfield College to run the town’s recreation programs. My mother decided it would be good for me to move in with Art, so I could “mature and grow up”. I should have taken heed when the sign over my new bedroom door said, “Den of Iniquity.”
Art would constantly masturbate in front of me and mouth the words “I love you” as he would climax. He would ask me to touch his penis. At night he would crawl into my bed and rub his erection against me. I would try to get away, but the more I struggled the more it turned him on. He was so strong that I just let him finish. He would roll on top on me and kiss me on the lips and tell me he loved me, and that it was okay if I didn’t love my parents. He would take me to work with him daily to his office at the grove, and grope me whenever he had the chance. He would swim out with me to the bid raft and grab my penis underwater, thinking it was funny.
I managed to get away from him and move back home, stating to my mother it wasn’t a pleasant experience. When I told her about Art she would say I was crazy and that’s just “boys being boys”. I would try to talk with friends about this and it got very embarrassing, so I just tucked it all away. Who does a twelve-year-old turn to in this circumstance? Had I been able to out this pedophile, then I truly think I could have saved further abuse from him.
This is my story in short, and I’m sure you get the picture. Now is the time to bring about some change on how society deals with guys like Art Wilkinson. He should be outed as the pedophile he is, and he can then suffer the consequences of his actions.
-Robert Blair Wallingford Jr.