RETURN TO DOZIER – Pt. 3: A Different View

JANUARY 1ST, 2018…

  Having just finished exploring the Dozier campus for the 2nd time, we decided to head across the street to see how far we would get using the overpass that goes from one side of the street to the other. Sure we had noticed that overpass many times, but for some reason it never ocurred to us that it was literally built connected to the tall chain link fence that surrounded Dozier.




 Parking on the opposite side of the road we’d be out in the open but it didn’t seem like such a big deal as Marianna seemed like a virtual ghost town on this chilly New Year’s morning. It was well worth the risk. Pulling into the huge lot, the 1st thing that stands out is the little church that sits almost front & center as well as a number of buildings off in the distance. We never did approach that church OR any of those building. This will come to be one of my biggest mistakes that I still continually beat myself up over! You’ll know exactly why when you see my next post…



  We took some pics of the Dozier buildings from where we stood & began climbing the steps to the overpass. The concrete was dirty & green in spots from the moss & the rusty chain link fencing was a tunnel surrounding us. It only took a few minutes to get up those steps before discovering that we wouldn’t be able to access the campus via the overpass because yet another locked gate blocked off the steps leading down to the other side. Although it was welded into place, there was a fairly decent sized hole toward the bottom of it. Don’t think that I didn’t consider trying to squeeze through that rusted out opening…I spent a considerable amount of time thinking up ways that it might actually work! Unfortunately, the fear of having to call my husband (OR even worse, the local fire department because I got myself stuck in an old rusty gate!) won out & the plan was nixed.



  We did take a few extra minutes to take some pictures & looking down on those buildings 2 things happened for me: 1) It was the 1st time that I realized how massive the Dozier School campus actually was & 2) The overwhelming sadness that I had felt began fading to the background & was quickly replaced with pure anger…Anger at the school, it’s employees, the city of Marianna, Jackson County & the whole God Damn State of Florida! Had just 1 person stepped in to actually protect those kids then just maybe Dozier wouldn’t have been able to unleash a reign of terror for 111 years! I was frustrated & thoroughly pissed!

  On our way back down to the car, I started to consider how to take this newly found emotion & put it to good use. Once returning home, it would only take a matter of days before the direction I needed to go in would become crystal clear & ALL of that angry energy would be needed for that journey…






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