Fond Memories of Rainbow

  Fond Memories of Rainbow

Posted by FoM on September 08, 2001 at 09:44:01 PT
By Adam Jackson, Staff Writer  
Source: South Bend Tribune 

Scores of mourners grieve the deaths of Rainbow Farm Campground owner Grover "Tom" Crosslin and his friend, Rolland Rohm. Crosslin, 46, died Monday after he was shot by FBI agents stationed around the campground. Rohm, 28, met a similar fate when a Michigan state trooper shot him Tuesday. Authorities said both men were brandishing guns at law-enforcement officials when they were killed.But in the hearts and minds of those mourners, the two men and the ideals they stood for live on, along with the fond memories they have of the 34-acre campground which served, some say, as a gathering spot for those promoting harmony, trust and friendship.
On the drive leading into the campground, which is located at 59896 Pemberton Road, family, friends and supporters of the two men and their way of life gathered Friday to keep a vigil over the property.Against a backdrop of burned buildings and an American flag flying upside-down at half-staff, they recounted the good times they had at the campground and their frustration at the way the recent five-day standoff at the property ended."I only ever had a chance to come here to stay one time," the Rev. Steven Thompson said. "And as soon as I drove in, I felt like I had come home."Thompson, who serves as the director for the Benzie County chapter of the National Organization for the Reformation of Marijuana Laws (NORML), said he attended the "Whee 2000" festival in July 2000 not only for pleasure, but also to help drum up support for the Michigan Personal Responsibility Amendment, a movement to decriminalize the personal use of marijuana and legalize the growing of industrial hemp plants for use in cloth, paper and other manufactured products.And he admitted that he and his friends had smoked marijuana while at the festival. But he firmly denied allegations brought up by law-enforcement authorities of the sale of drugs, use of hard drugs, and sexual acts out in the open."I saw absolutely none of those things," Thompson recounted Friday. "What I saw was people enjoying themselves in a safe and friendly atmosphere."Others who gathered at the campground Friday spoke of a place where the words loneliness, helplessness and hunger were not part of visitors' vocabulary. One man, who identified himself as Cass County resident Buzz Daily, said Rainbow Farm regulars and visitors alike were always willing to lend everything from a hand to a ham sandwich to anyone in need at a festival."No one ever went hungry or got cold; everyone was always happy to share with you," he said. "You could leave everything out at your campsite when you were walking around, and no one would steal it."People could trust each other."When minor problems did arise, campground officials were quick to speak to the friends of the problematic person, said Daily, a Rainbow Farm regular and festival volunteer worker. That alone was usually enough to defuse the situation before it got out of hand."I never saw any brawls or drunken behavior," he said. "Everybody was peaceful. They were just there to have fun."And from what Maurice Williams saw, that's how it was at Rainbow Farm from the campground's beginning in 1993 to last weekend's standoff. Williams, a now-retired 40-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, was the person who sold the land to Crosslin in 1993, and developed a friendship with him that lasted throughout the years of the operation of the campground."Oh, I came up here to visit all the time," he said. "Crosslin always made up a place for me to stay in the house."I was a VIP," he laughed.Williams, who still lives in Chicago, said he leased the land to sharecroppers for more than 40 years. He said he intended to retire there, but decided to sell the land to Crosslin instead. But he still loved the rolling fields and natural setting of the plot, and tried to come back for weekends and festivals."There were plenty of people out there, but the only problem I ever saw was the mosquitoes," said Williams, who drove out to the campground to chat with supporters Friday. "We used to call them 'gallonippers,' because when they nipped you they'd take a gallon."The mosquitoes are still there, and likely will be long into the future. But the future of Rainbow Farm is not known. A civil forfeiture proceeding initiated last spring against the property is still ongoing, which means the land may still be seized from Crosslin's family.Some, like Thompson, believe that Rainbow Farm will live on through increased awareness of what they say is the folly of enforcing laws that prevent people from enjoying personal freedom on their private property."They've martyred Tom and Rollie," Thompson said. "I hope this wakes people up to what the government is doing."Others, like mourner Jeff Schifler, say that no matter what the future brings, the end of the old Rainbow Farm Campground will always leave a hollow spot in supporters' souls."I tried to spend every summer there," he said. "Rainbow Farm was my home."Funeral services:Visitation and funeral services will be held this morning for Grover T. "Tom" Crosslin, who was killed Monday by police during a five-day standoff at the Rainbow Farm Campground in Vandalia. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. EST at the Walley-Mills-Zimmerman Funeral Home and Crematory, 700 E. Jackson Blvd., Elkhart. Funeral services will begin at the same location immediately following visitation.Visitation services for Rolland Rohm, who was shot and killed by police in the same standoff Tuesday, will be held at the same location from 3 to 8 p.m. EST on Monday, with funeral services, also at the same location, scheduled for Tuesday beginning at 2 p.m. Note: Supporters recall slain pair, their ideals and good times.Newshawk: Mr. GreengenesSource: South Bend Tribune (IN)Author: Adam Jackson, Staff Writer Published: September 08, 2001Copyright: 2001 South Bend TribuneContact: vop sbtinfo.comWebsite: Articles & Web Sites:NORML Farm Campground Crosslin & Rolland Rohm Memorial Farms Standoff Sparks Talk, Opinions News Articles - Tom Crosslin 

Home    Comment    Email    Register    Recent Comments    Help


Comment #7 posted by sm247 on September 09, 2001 at 03:19:28 PT

Rainbow Farm Massacre (in three part harmony)
Dark clouds over Rainbow FarmOur god now is frowning Thunder in the distanceour founding fathers rollingturning in their gravesLightning flashes acrossbloody dripping skiesshots heard around the worldEveryone asking whyrain is falling downa million hearts broken two souls heaven boundheros dying with their boots onnot only for the ground they roamedfor a son taken from their homenot to mention the holy herbseeded by our father.. createrforbidden by the powers that bewhere there is no justice there can be no peace butfor a change comes a releaseforgivness a matter of questiontime has come for blessingbreaking of the breadpartaking of the fruitdown on Rainbow FarmThis is now public domain but anyone who puts music to this must release it via internet as a FREE downloadable mp3.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #6 posted by mr.greengenes on September 08, 2001 at 17:14:52 PT

Farm statement of purpose
  Why is it the media only gives a couple of sentences of Rainbow Farms purpose?  Here is their full purpose statement for those who haven't seen it.Our PurposeRainbow Farm supports the medical, spiritual, and responsible recreationaluses of Marijuana for a more sane and compassionate America. We also encouragethe vast agricultural and industrial uses of the natural substance CannabisHemp as an environmentally safe alternative to thousands of synthetic productsnow being mass consumed in this country at a tremendous cost to our environment.Above all we support FREEDOM in America. We have seen the erosion of ourprecious civil liberties over the past 60 years as a direct result of Cannabisprohibition and the governments War on Drugs. We consider this a war on US andwe are fighting back with large assemblies of people with similar views at ourtwo annual hemp festivals HEMP AID and RoachRoast. We believe it is our DUTYas citizens of a FREE country to be vigilant in the protection of our sacred civil liberties. We educate and inform people about the beneficial and responsible uses ofCannabis and we register voters to gain the power at the polls to putpoliticians into office who support our freedoms and the reform of Marijuanalaws. We've become active in the political process in this country and weencourage all responsible citizens to do the same. Proceeds from HEMP AID andRoachRoast are used to support many groups, agencies and individuals who areactive in the support of our civil liberties. We feel the time has come andthe momentum is here to put an end to prohibition forever. We believe that thegeneral populace of this country has become smart enough to understand that our tax dollars would be better spent and our society as a whole would be better servedby providing treatment for people with drug problems instead of imprisonment.We call on all responsible citizens to do their part in bringing an end toprohibition in America and an end to the Drug War that has imprisoned andkilled thousands of innocent Americans over the past decades. We want you tolook at this website carefully and go to all the links we provide for you hereso you can learn more about how important your support is now. We encourageyou to attend our festivals and excercise your freedom and civil liberty andjoin us in raising our voices against intollerance in this country. HEMP AID andRoachRoast are a great way to have fun and support a worthy cause at the same time.Rainbow Farm DOES NOT promote the use of illicit drugs by anyone, nor do wecondone or encourage the use of tobacco, alchohol, or marijuana by minors. Wedo not encourage breaking laws. We work hard to change attitudes and bad lawsfrom within the system of government currently in place. We support thatsystem of government and we feel priviledged to live in America.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #5 posted by FoM on September 08, 2001 at 13:09:31 PT

Correction from Richard Lake
Correction: US MI: Rainbow Farm - What Others Are Saying This is also online at my previous post I left out the FEAR item; however, it is in the on line version. While details are still unclear, it seems that a good number of activists will be at the Farm for the memorial service on the 15th. I have had notes form east coast reform leaders about going, and just had a call from a retired LEO from the Detroit area who would like to pick me up to attend. More when I know more.Here it is:From Forfeiture Endangers American Rights
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #4 posted by xxdr_zombiexx on September 08, 2001 at 12:37:46 PT:

It's all clear to me now...
This point made in the article tell me one mor reason the FBI was involved, and these men had to be terminated:]**"No one ever went hungry or got cold; everyone was always happy to share with you," he said. "You could leave everything out at your campsite when you were walking around, and no one would steal it."People could trust each other."**Open Communism must be feared. All that sharing means some poor multinational corporation is cheated out of a ham sammich or a cup of coffee just becuase of simpe human altruism. It's an outrage I tells ya....Seriously, again, Its protection of capitalism via suppression of a powerful renewable resource, coupled with a near-fascist national drive to both demonize cannabis smokers, and reap a profit via forfietures.I understand that Donald Scott's Widow has finally been screwed out of thier land after they did the same damn thing to him in 1992.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #3 posted by FoM on September 08, 2001 at 11:31:00 PT

Important E-Mail News from Richard Lake
So that the email would fit I had to cut out the actual article from Cannabis Culture but the link is right here.US MI: Rainbow Farm - What Others Are Saying Newshawk: Richard LakePubdate: Sat, 8 Sep 2001This is also online at please see the Alert 'War On Cannabis Claims Another Two Lives at Rainbow Farms' Today, the day of the funeral for Tom Crosslin, we make an exception to MAP's policies to provide and archive four items from on-line sources - Cannabis Culture, The Week Online with DRCNet, Forfeiture Endangers American Rights, And High Times.From Cannabis Culture online The Week Online with DRCNet DRUG WARRIORS DRIVE MARIJUANA ACTIVISTS TO THE BRINK, THEN GUN THEM DOWN: STANDOFF ENDS WITH TWO DEAD AT RAINBOW FARMGrover T. (Tom) Crosslin lived for the cause of marijuana legalization. Early this week he died for it. Crosslin, 46, the owner and operator of Rainbow Farm, an alternative campground and concert site in Newberg Township outside of Vandalia, Michigan , was shot and killed on his property by an FBI agent Monday afternoon. His long-time partner, Rolland Rohm, was shot and killed by Michigan State Police on the property early Tuesday morning. The shootings ended a stand-off that began last Friday afternoon, but the fallout from the killings is only beginning.Throughout the Labor Day weekend, according to law enforcement accounts, Crosslin and Rohm systematically burned down the ten structures on their beloved farm, shot at and hit a news helicopter filming the fires, shot at and missed a police surveillance plane, sprayed the woods bordering the 34-acre property with gunfire to keep police at bay, and separately confronted law officers with raised weapons, only to be shot dead.Rohm's stepfather, John Livermore, said he and Rohm's mother drove all night from Tennessee to try to help police negotiate, but were never allowed to speak to Rohm, who Livermore said has a learning disability. Livermore said he believes Rohm left the house because he thought police were going to allow him to see his 12-year-old son, Robert. The boy had been taken from the campground and put into foster care by the Family Independence Agency after the drug arrests in May, according to Crosslin's attorney Dori Leo.Early Tuesday, Rohm had said he would surrender at 7 a.m. if his son were brought to see him, Cass County Sheriff Joseph Underwood, Jr. said. The sheriff said police were in the process of granting the request when shortly after 6 a.m., a fire was reported at the compound. Rohm was then seen leaving the residence with a long gun and walking into the yard, Underwood said. That's when the confrontation with police took place.Buzz Daily, 44, a Cass County farmer, said Crosslin and Rohm were known for their generosity. At Christmas, he said, they would drive their pickup truck into Vandalia and distribute gifts throughout the town of about 350 residents. They also would buy food and clothes for people staying at the campground, he said.Daily also lashed out at police, saying he could not imagine Crosslin or Rohm brandishing a weapon. "I'm surprised that with all the money (police) put into this, they didn't have any non-lethal means of resolving this," said Daily, who said he'd known the pair for about five years and attended several HempAid festivals at the campground.Daily and others said they weren't sure what would happen to Rainbow Farm. But he urged those who support forfeiture reform or marijuana legalization to come to the funerals for Crosslin and Rohm. Funeral arrangements had not been determined on Tuesday afternoon, Rohm's family said.Vandalia is about 30 miles northeast of South Bend, Ind., in southwest Michigan. A historical marker in the town park describes Vandalia as a one-time junction on the Underground Railroad. Slaves escaping through Illinois and Indiana were taken in by local Quakers, who guided the slaves east into Canada.The campground, at 59896 Pemberton Road in Newberg Township, includes shower and bathroom facilities, a coffee bar called The Joint and a hemp-themed gift shop. Each year it hosts two festivals called HempAid and RoachRoast, according to the Web site story was culled from several news accounts available at High Times WACOby Steven Wishnia, Special to HighWitness NewsRainbow Farm's annual Hemp Aid and Roach Roast festivals had made it a center for pot partying and activism in the Michigan-Indiana area. The killings capped local authorities' long-running efforts to shut it down.VANDALIA, MI-Rainbow Farm owner Tom Crosslin, 46, and his partner, Rolland Rohm, 28, were killed by police Labor Day weekend during a four-day standoff at the farm here.Crosslin was shot to death Sept. 3 by two FBI agents, allegedly after he pointed a gun at them. Rohm was killed by Michigan state police in a similar scenario early the next morning. Brandon Peoples, 18, who was walking with Crosslin when he was shot, suffered minor injuries.Rainbow Farm's annual Hemp Aid and Roach Roast festivals had made it a center for pot partying and activism in the Michigan-Indiana area. "It's the Waco of weed," says Ann Arbor Hash Bash organizer Adam Brook. "Just to think this is all over pot, it's absolutely ridiculous."The killings capped local authorities' long-running efforts to shut the farm down. Busted last May, Crosslin and Rohm were facing charges of growing marijuana, gun possession and maintaining a drug house-undercover state police had bought pot and other drugs at several festivals, and accused the pair of letting people deal on the property. State police and Cass County Prosecutor Scott Teter had also filed papers to forfeit the farm, and had put Rohm's 12-year-old son in foster care.The week before the standoff, authorities moved to revoke Crosslin and Rohm's bail, saying they had violated a court order banning them from holding events on the property. On Aug. 31, instead of going to a hearing on the motion, the two began burning the farm's buildings, and shot the tail of a TV station's helicopter flying overhead. Over 100 state police, county sheriffs and FBI agents barricaded the road by the farm."They thought it was a police helicopter," says "Buggy," a 34-year-old Vandalia farmhand who served as a go-between between Crosslin, Rohm and authorities during the ensuing standoff. "The government pushed people too far. There was a motion to lose their land, and they'd already lost their child." Family members and sympathizers agree that Crosslin was intensely frustrated by the prospects of losing his land, his liberty and his family, but question the police story and tactics. "It seems very suspicious to us all," says Crosslin's cousin Jim Spry, a 53-year-old truckdriver from Elkhart, IN. "Who knows that Tommy even had a gun on him?"The pair's lawyer, Dori Leo of Kalamazoo, who was barred from the property by police, says what bothers her most is the police and FBI snipers "who lay in wait for a confrontation to happen.""Why did they have to use lethal force?" she asks. "I still don't believe I was in any danger from either of them. That's why I was willing to go in." "Tommy smoked his grass for years," adds Spry. "He wanted to create a place where people could relax and be free."And other than Peoples, the only living witnesses left are in law enforcement.Go to THCTV -- to see a video tribute to the Rainbow Farm Campground. 
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #2 posted by Patrick on September 08, 2001 at 10:57:24 PT

Cannabis Dave
I couldn't agree more!I am glad to hear that you no longer have to fear the police. Others in our land are not so lucky. They say smoking da herb can cause paranoia. Well after ya witness a Memorial Day Massacre/Murder, it ain't no wonder cannabis lovers everywhere are paranoid.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #1 posted by Cannabis Dave on September 08, 2001 at 10:29:13 PT

It all comes down to a harmless herb being illegal
If the herb wasn't illegal, then they couldn't of seized their farm and child. How many more people are going to die before we change the absurd law that makes a healing herb illegal: especially considering tobaccol and alcohol are not only tolerated, but subsidized by the government - talk about hypocrisy! Besides tobacco and alcohol, prescription drugs are abused way more and cause far more deaths than all illegal drugs combined, but they are protected by the big pharmaceautical companies - an example is the "Oxycontin" epidemic now sweeping our country. Methadone clinics are now seeing more new clients addicted to oxycontin rather than heroin in some places, but that company (which makes most of its profits from oxycontin) has a powerful lobby. Cannabis continues to be banned completely in most places, and our government spends endless billions fighting a hopeless war against its own citizens, fueling the prison/industrial complex. I hope a lot of people go to their funerals - I wish I could go, but I'm in Portland, Oregon. We will have a vigil for them here too though. I am a medical marijuana patient in this state, so I don't have to worry about the cops anymore. I respect the cops in this city much more now that I don't have to worry about them arresting me for my medicine - I even invited them in to see my medicinal garden one time when they were here on a different matter. How nice it is knowing I can count on them to protect me from rip-offs now, rather than fearing them like I used to. How sad it is that someone in another state doing the same thing can have their property and possessions confiscated, and even have their children ripped out of their arms because of cannabis. How absurd it is that our government does that to its own citizens over a healing herb that happens to be the most valuable plant on the planet: that is precisely WHY they continue to wage their war against cannabis - the ban is really all about them fearing the economic potential of hemp. Read "The Emperor Wears No Clothes" for an enlightened look at cannabis hemp. Get involved in organizations locally to help make it legal - cannabis/hemp can save the planet if we let it!If a cop had been killed, they would have gotten front page news and a parade. The media is playing down what happened, but we can't let them do that. Most people want to see cannabis hemp legalized, and we need to get together to make it happen. These murders will just help our cause in the long run, but I expect the pigs to continue killing people over cannabis even though it ultimately hurts them - I never accused them of being intelligent. If they were intelligent they wouldn't be enforcing an unholy law against a healing herb that can save the planet.
[ Post Comment ]

  Post Comment