For the past forty years, Charles Manson has languished in prison for his participation in the Manson family murders of 1969. He is America's icon of evil, the one who brought down the curtain on the 1960s. He has never been a quiet inmate, however. From his unbridled outbursts of rage to his tender acts of generosity, he makes his presence felt to everyone around him. He inspires awe in other inmates, he cozies up to prison guards who are eager to do him favors, and he is responsible for countless staff transfers within and outside of the institution. This book details the dramatic journey of Willie Mendez, a troubled inmate, housed next to the serial killer for more than a year. Willie became institutionalized after repeated violations of the law, including attempted murder and armed robbery. He is serving a sixty-eight year prison sentence. From his initial feelings of contempt toward the aging killer, Willie, nicknamed, "Boxcar," by Manson, traveled to a place of openness and acceptance of the old man's ideas. Over time, he began to defer more and more to Manson without reservation. This is a tale of growth and maturity that contains intimate details and shocking jailhouse secrets. Willie shares an insider's view of Charles Manson, his crazy behavior, his whispered confessions, and his sometimes profound wisdom. "Charlie" speaks openly about his sexuality, shares some details of the Tate and LaBianca murders, and relates his childhood experience of being forced to wear a dress to school.
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