David Chain

David Chain

Earth First Warrior

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David Chain did not die in vain

I, along with hundreds of thousands of Californians, abhor the senseless death of a human being trying to save our forests. The need for forests on this planet is all to obvious, and the necessity for loggers to remove forests for a livlihood must be re-thought. Our state legislature must provide alternative ways to supply building supplies to the construction industry and re-integrate this labor pool into ecological sustainable technologies. If we do not there will continue to be a clash of interests, and unfortunately more blood will be spilled. Its time we stopped this insane destruction of the environment and of human beings. We must think of the entire eco-system of the planet before more David Chains are killed by self interests.
Willard Van De Bogart

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Sept. 18, 1998.

Footage of logger threatening Earth First!ers Contradicts Company Claims

A video taken by Earth First! activists in Grizzly Creek captured the hostile voice of a PL faller threatening their lives less than an hour before David "Gypsy" Chain was killed by a falling tree. The video blatantly contradicts Pacific Lumber's claim that the company "had no knowledge" that Chain and others were nearby in Grizzly Creek. In fact, the logger who later cut the tree that killed David Chain can be heard furiously shouting obscenities and vowing to get his "pistol." Several other Earth First! activists were just six feet away from Chain when the tree came crashing down.

Contrary to Pacific Lumber's public statements, David Chain's death was the inevitable result of the timber company's deliberate campaign of violence toward environmental activists. In the last year, Earth First! protesters have been hog-tied and lowered from tree top perches and had their tree sit safety lines cut by PL climbers. Loggers have cut trees in the direction of tree sitters, and have threatened lives by cutting trees with activists in them. Logging helicopters have been used to harass and endanger treesitters, such Julia Butterfly, flying within feet of their platforms and whipping up forceful winds. Recently, activists encountered a "goon squad" of PL employees in the Mattole watershed who chased, threatened and assaulted community members who were trying to stop illegal logging in their home. The escalating use of violence by Pacific Lumber has been ignored by Humboldt County law enforcement.

This vigilanteism in the woods also threatens the safety of PL employees. Logging rates as one of the most dangerous occupations in the country. PL's policy requiring logging crews to also act as company thugs only adds more risk to employees in the woods. The tragic death of David Chain under these circumstances shows clearly that to PL, profits are more important than human life. Earth First! activists who witnessed the tragic death of their comrade David Chain will cooperate with a full investigation into the incident and its causes. A memorial is planned for next week, and Earth First! will continue to protest Pacific Lumber's illegal logging in Grizzly Creek in David's name.

NOTE: This young girl, Julia "Butterfly" Hill (see below), about whow some information was circulated to this list months ago, deserves a Goldman Prize for her unbelievable endurance in the face of countless threats to save the venerable redwood tree on which she lives and the surrounding forest from being cut for short term profit.

A personal note from Andy Caffrey:

This outrageous, gruesome death hits us at a crucial time. Julia "Butterfly" Hill has been sitting up in the ancient Redwood tree Luna for over 9 months now. The Pepper Spray lawsuit has to be tried all over again. Tomorrow California Governor Pete Wilson is scheduled to sign off on the Headwaters Deal, which we have been emphatically opposing from Day One. Judi Bari and Darryl Cherney's Redwood Justice lawsuit against the FBI and the Oakland Police Dept for their activities surrounding the 1990 car bomb murder attempt has yet to go to trial. And Charles Hurwitz, CEO of MAXXAM is still involved in a lawsuit filed against him by the FDIC which is trying to recover the funds Hurwitz looted in the Bush era Savings and Loan ripoffs (see the Jail Hurwitz web site below.)

We have a completely empty bank account right now, with everything we have going to these battles. And we're doing this organizing in one of the poorest counties in the state. Donations to support this effort to keep you informed and to inform the media of the facts, get videos out to them, and to talk with the many supporters calling us from around the country are crucially needed. We don't even have money to buy video tape right now (hey, send us some blank video tapes if you want to, we're not proud!)

Also, we are in desperate need of a Web publishing-worthy Macintosh computer with accessories, since our access is very limited to the computer sending you this press release.

So please, if you can help, please send what you can ASAP, payable to "Earth First!" and send it to
Earth First! Media Center
P.O. Box 324
Redway, CA 95560

Thanks so very much. We can do so much if you get involved. We're gonna do our part here in Humboldt County. We aren't going anywhere. We haven't given up on saving *all* of Headwaters Forest, and we sure aren't going to abandon our fight for justice for David Chain! And if you've got a computer for us, please give me a call at 707/923-2114 or 707/923-4949.

Stunned and Outraged,

PS For those who want to help with their bodies out here at our California base camp, please be aware that the camp is moving tomorrow to an area much nearer to where this definitely nonaccident occurred. Heading East of HWY 101 on Hwy 36, drive about 20 miles to Grizzly Creek State Park. If you need to know more, please e-mail me or phone if need be.

Earth First! Media Center
Andy Caffrey, facilitator


JAIL HURWITZ! Save Headwaters Forest!

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Contributions to further the Earth First! Media Center's promotional work in support of the above and dozens of other EF! campaigns, may be sent, payable to Earth First!, to

Earth First! Media Center
P.O. Box 324
Redway, CA 95560

More Information on David Chain - From Headwaters Forest Organization

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