All Purple’s daughters

BY LINCOLN ANDERSON | “Everything is true,” said Diane Beastrom.

One of Adam Purple’s former stepdaughters, she called The Villager three weeks ago — the day after the newspaper’s publication of “The dark side of Purple,” an exposé of the urban gardening legend’s shocking history of sexual abuse and imprisonment — to tell her own story.

Beastrom, in turn, provided a contact number for her sister, Dorothy Brooks, in Australia, who in short order recounted to The Villager her years of nightly sexual abuse, culminating in rape, by Purple, real name David Lloyd Wilkie.

“He was truly a horrible monster,” Dorothy said. “I am still recovering.”

Diane also provided a phone number for Lenore Wilkie, David Wilkie’s youngest biological daughter, who, in phone interviews, similarly shared her vivid memories of growing up in the sexually deviant household, which she credits with sending her life on a downward spiral into decades of homelessness and prostitution.

Front row, from left, Lenore, 7, Diane, 8, Jenean, 9, and Dorothy, 10, with Romola and David Lloyd Wilkie — later known as Adam Purple — on their passport photo to emigrate to Australia in 1964.

Front row, from left, Lenore, 7, Diane, 8, Jenean, 9, and Dorothy, 10, with Romola and David Lloyd Wilkie — later known as Adam Purple — on their passport photo to emigrate to Australia in 1964.

 

 

Lenore also said that when she went to live with Wilkie on the Lower East Side when she was 16, he had her put in an IUD — her assumption being he clearly hoped to have sex with her — and that it left her permanently unable to bear children.

In “The dark side of Purple,” Jenean, Wilkie’s oldest daughter, asking that only her first name be used, and Lenore told The Villager their stories, and provided a cache of family letters and court papers, opening the window onto their father’s arrest for child molestation for attacking Dorothy when he was 37 and she was 12 and the family was living in Australia. Wilkie was convicted and went on to spend up to two years in jail, before being deported, apparently to California, where he spent a short while in Haight-Ashbury.

Soon after, he re-emerged in New York City on the Lower East Side, where he reinvented himself as the mysterious yet charismatic hippie figure Adam Purple. Dressed in purple tie-dye and with a succession of two wives named Eve, he created his sprawling Garden of Eden on five lots, which — fertilized by horse manure he collected in Central Park — flourished until 1986, when the city bulldozed it to create affordable housing. In 1999, the city evicted him from the abandoned building on Forsyth St. he had been living in.

Wilkie died this past September at age 84 while biking across the Williamsburg Bridge.

The Villager article about the white-bearded “gardens godfather” was nothing less than a bombshell. As one stunned local activist reflected, “Your story is convincing. It’s the zeitgeist of the whole thing that harshes my buzz. I mean Adam Purple? It’s like he’s our Bill Cosby.”

Now in their late 50s and early 60s, all four women say that only in late middle age have they finally gotten their lives and psyches together and, to the best of their abilities, recovered somewhat from the damage of their chaotic and abusive youths.

Wilkie met his second wife, Romola, when their paths crossed by chance in Death Valley, according to Dorothy. Romola was on her way to a new job and was having car trouble and Wilkie, who happened to be driving by, helped her out. They soon married. But their blended family, including two daughters of Wilkie’s — Jenean and Lenore — and two of Romola’s — Dorothy and Diane — turned out to be a far cry from “The Brady Bunch.”

Diane’s story

Diane, who now lives in California, said she remembers sailing three months aboard the Orsova to Sydney, Australia.

“He hated America. I don’t know why,” she recalled of her stepfather.

An Australian immigration entry document states Wilkie’s profession as journalist and that he planned to work there as one. He had previously worked on a daily newspaper in York, Pennsylvania. However, in Australia, he wound up teaching English and literature at the college level, according to the women.

Before traveling to Australia, Diane said, they drove around the States and down to the Panama Canal and back up in a panel van, with pit stops at nudist camps along the way.

Romola with her daughters, Diane, left, and Dorothy, right, some years after Romola had divorced David Lloyd Wilkie (Adam Purple), who served up to two years in jail for attacking Dorothy.

Romola with her daughters, Diane, left, and Dorothy, right, some years after Romola had divorced David Lloyd Wilkie (Adam Purple), who served up to two years in jail for attacking Dorothy.

 

In America, Wilkie had started brewing his own superpotent beer at home and this continued in Australia, she recalled. The sexual abuse had been going on in America but only increased Down Under.

“The worst of it was in Australia, in Kurrajong Heights,” Diane said, referring to a town near Sydney. “He brewed his own beer — that was for his parties — and they said something about acid.”

One of her most harrowing experiences was when a strange man suddenly showed up at the home.

“I remember this one night. We woke up to someone in our house,” she said. “He had just gotten out of jail. He called over all the girls. He told me to get into bed with him. He was naked. I think he was a pedophile but I don’t know.

“I said I had to go to the bathroom — we had outhouses then. I hid behind a water tank. He came out to look for me in the outhouse, but he didn’t see me. I feel I was very lucky that day.”

Mother’s abuse

Another incident affected her even more deeply, however, because it involved something her own mother did to her during a party, she said. Three of the women say that Romola — who died last March — was complicit in the sexual abuse, though Dorothy strongly denies this.

“They were always having parties. She took me in a room and said I had to suck between her legs,” Diane recalled of her mother. “He had told my mom if I didn’t do this he was going to rape me. I never trusted anyone again after that — I was afraid of everyone.”

The little girls cursed like sailors, and Wilkie taught them to diss the Australian national anthem.

“We were raised like animals,” she said. “In school we would say, ‘God save the f—ing queen.’ That’s what he would have us say.”

‘He was nasty’

Jenean had told The Villager about wooden dildos that Wilkie carved for the little girls, and Diane confirmed this.

“Yes, I remember all of that,” she said. “He was nasty. And he would read us stories and raunchy comic books. Everything that Jenean has told you is true.”

After Romola had divorced Wilkie and he had gone to jail, she was short on cash and put Diane in a “boarding school,” after which she lived with foster parents. Wanting to flee what she felt was a toxic family situation, Diane wound up returning to America and living with relatives.

“I just wanted away from her,” she said of her mother.

Dorothy’s story

For her part, Dorothy recalls Wilkie being physically as well as sexually abusive.

“I remember his army boots well,” she told The Villager. “We would climb a tree to get away from him. Oh yes, he would kick us with his army boots, steel-toed. That was discipline.”

Similarly, her sister Diane said once she was supposed to water the beans outside but was watching cartoons on TV instead, and Wilkie picked her up and threw her down on her back.

“I still have scoliosis because of it,” she said. “It hurt very bad after that for a long time. I’m getting chiropractic care for that right now.”

Dorothy today in a photo from Facebook.

Dorothy today in a photo from Facebook.

 

‘It was every night’

Regarding the sexual abuse, Dorothy, the oldest of the girls, said that, after reaching a certain age, she was regularly subjected to it by her stepfather.

“For a few years there, it was every night,” she recalled. “Not assaulting me, I don’t know — but I suppose it was a kind of rape. He used his tongue.

“He would do it every time he could, from the time I was six to the time I was 12. He was doing things to me — it wasn’t a two-way thing.

“He would ‘inadvertently’ wake me up. I would be asleep, and he would want me to be asleep. I wasn’t able to move. I was praying that it would be over. To me, it felt like hours. He would just go on and on, all night. It felt like an eternity.”

She, too, remembers the dildos.

“Every time we were alone, he made us use those wooden things, all together,” she said. “It was sort of dehumanizing. He was a monster. He knew what he was doing. He was destroying four young minds. He was a horrible, horrible man.”

As for why Wilkie did these things, Dorothy said, simply, “because he was insane.”

Another time, she said, she was running away down the street for help and Wilkie chased after her in the car.

“I thought he was going to run me over,” she said. “I think he thought I was going to tell.”

Sexual assaults

Eventually, things escalated even further and one night Romola found Wilkie “molesting” Dorothy. Romola took her two daughters and left him, but eventually returned, after he promised he wouldn’t do it again. But he did, and she had him arrested.

On Oct. 28, 1966, Romola wrote to Jenean and Lenore’s maternal grandparents, saying, in part:

“Dorothy later complained to me that he still molested her when I left the house (Lloyd had Wednesdays off) and I asked him and each time he would pass over it lightly and the last time he said that she waited in bed for him to come to her, and that I had no business interfering in his affections towards her.”

(His family referred to Wilkie as Lloyd when they were in Australia but David afterward.)

The judge’s ruling in the subsequent custody hearing for the children refers to two instances of Wilkie assaulting Dorothy and then, immediately after each assault, committing an “act of indecency upon the girl.”

“I do know he raped me the last time, when I was 12 years old,” she told The Villager.

Asked if she felt there was anything at all good about Wilkie, Dorothy answered, “No, he was 100 percent evil and insane.”

However, she stands firmly behind her mom.

“I believe that my mother was forced to do things that she wouldn’t normally do,” she said. “She was a very devout woman. Perhaps he had given her drugs. She fought him tooth and nail.”

Adam Purple in winter 1982, when he was 52, on his building’s fire escape overlooking his huge Garden of Eden. Purple lived at the bottom of the abandoned building. Four years later, the city bulldozed his garden to make way for public housing. Photo by Harvey Wang

Adam Purple in winter 1982, when he was 52, on his building’s fire escape overlooking his huge Garden of Eden. Purple lived at the bottom of the abandoned building. Four years later, the city bulldozed his garden to make way for public housing. Photo by Harvey Wang

 

 

Decadent decor

Dorothy said she doesn’t remember the “vulgar placard” that the judge at the custody hearing said witnesses testified having seen in the Wilkies’ home. Jenean recalled it as a poster of God sodomizing Uncle Sam, with the slogan “One nation under God.” Dorothy said it certainly fits.

“I would say so… He just wanted to drop the bomb on America,” she said.

As for the house’s other decor, she recalled, “His library consisted of two whole bookshelves of Sexology magazines, right from the floor to the ceiling. It is all about sex and what to do,” she said of the explicit publication, which ceased publishing in the late 1960s. “And the Kama Sutra — we were made to read that. Of course we didn’t understand it, we were children.”

Purple also did give them the Classics Illustrated comics series — comic book adaptations of literary classics — which she enjoyed, which was about the only good thing she could say about him.

As for how Wilkie later came by his Adam Purple moniker and why his wives in New York City were named Eve, Dorothy thinks it’s because at one point back in the States Wilkie had been friends with a couple next door, Adam and Eva, who were into psychedelic drugs. She also believes that in Australia Wilkie was synthesizing LSD with his students at the school where he taught.

Lenore’s story

As for Lenore, her older sister, Jenean, had described her as the “most damaged” of all the girls. Lenore had shared her memories of her father in a five-page handwritten letter to The Villager, parts of which were published three weeks ago in “The dark side of Purple.” Contacted by The Villager for this follow-up article, Lenore said she wasn’t sure at first if she wanted to give an interview, but ultimately decided to do it and get it all off her chest.

Unique among her sisters and stepsisters, Lenore actually lived with her father during two separate stints on the Lower East Side after he had had become Adam Purple.

In fact, Wilkie sent Eve to find Lenore at a home for wayward girls in South Dakota and bring her back to New York to live with him. Lenore had actually come to New York a year earlier to try to find him, without success.

“I was more sexually deviant, in a bad way. It would be very personal to tell my story,” Lenore told The Villager at the outset.

By “deviant,” she was referring to her own experiences after she lived with her father. However, her father’s apparent desires upon his youngest daughter were clearly deviant — as in the ultimate taboo, full-on incest — in her view.

Made her get IUD

“My father got me an IUD and it made me sterile,” she said. “I’m sure he wanted to have sex with me. I was very naive and only 16 and only had had sex twice. He didn’t want me to get pregnant. He took me to a doctor with a fake ID that said I was 21.”

Dorothy and Diane both told The Villager that Lenore had related to them how Wilkie made her get the intrauterine device and how it had left her sterile.

In part of her letter to The Villager that was published in “The dark side of Purple,” Lenore wrote, “So I spent the first part of the summer of my 16th year working in David’s garden and sleeping in Adam and Eve’s bed, not sleeping while they screwed and hoping they didn’t ask me to join in.”

Asked last week if Wilkie ever did have sex with her back then, she said, “No!”

There wasn’t much discussion before Wilkie, two months after her arrival, took Lenore to get the birth-control device.

“He asked me if I wanted it,” she recalled. “I said, ‘I guess so.’ I didn’t know it could damage you. He probably lost out on the whole deal because he paid the doctor and he got no sex with me.”

Having never given birth, it was extremely painful for her to have her cervix dilated to insert the IUD — but her father came prepared.

“He gave me some smoke that was kick-ass!” she said. “It soothed my pain. I don’t know where he got it, because his homegrown stuff was good but not that good.”

Adam Purple a.k.a. David Lloyd Wilkie on his folding bike outside the Time’s Up headquarters in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. For his last couple of years, Wilkie lived in a small room at the environmental and cycling group’s space. He died in September of heart failure while biking on the Williamsburg Bridge, possibly returning from grocery shopping in the East Village.

Adam Purple a.k.a. David Lloyd Wilkie on his folding bike outside the Time’s Up headquarters in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. For his last couple of years, Wilkie lived in a small room at the environmental and cycling group’s space. He died in September of heart failure while biking on the Williamsburg Bridge, possibly returning from grocery shopping in the East Village.

 

 

Good garden memories

Lenore said she loved the Garden of Eden. Her main job was to clear the weeds around its brick pathways.

“He couldn’t get rid of them because he didn’t want to use chemicals,” she said.

“He s–t in a bowl with newspaper in it and buried it under blackberry bushes because that’s a plant you could do that to and could eat it,” she recalled of Purple’s famed “night soil.”

He also showed her a purple robe that he had worn in court after police busted him with a massive crop of pot in his Lower East Side garden.

Over the course of her two visits, she met both the first and second Eve, and liked them both, though felt Eve No. 2 was “more mature.”

Each of the four young girls was affected differently by their abusive childhood environment, she said. Of them all, Lenore seems to have the best memories of her youth.

“I was the youngest one, it affected me differently,” she said. “Diane was shy and awkward. Dorothy was sleek and sensual. Jenean was reserved, withdrawn. I was just a kid, a baby. I was the youngest, I was his favorite. He bounced me on his knee, carried me on his shoulders. He’d be playing on his guitar and smoking his pipe and winked at me. I was his little girl. We all sang folk songs. Everyone played instruments except me. It was so much fun. We were cultured.”

Kids’ sex shows

However, in “The dark side of Purple,” Jenean had said the girls “were trained to perform.” She didn’t elaborate much, though — but Lenore did. The “performances” happened at the parties that Wilkie and Romola frequently threw, up to several times a week, as the naked prepubescent girls acted out X-rated skits that Wilkie directed.

“Jenean has blocked this out,” Lenore said. “There would be a bed in the living room and we would have to play with ourselves and each other and imitate adult sexual acts. ‘Can you do this?’ ‘Can you do that?’ Like two of us at a time. ‘You two… . ’ Diane and Jenean. Dorothy and me. Me and Jenean. Dorothy and Diane. All different combinations. Never boring,” she quipped.

“We pretended to [have sex]. We weren’t stupid. We went along with it as long as we had to. Like lesbian sex — putting crotches together. You just play like an adult and pretend you’re in love. We were completely brainwashed.”

The guests would watch the kids’ show, but not everyone would.

“Oh, just some of ’em,” Lenore recalled. “Some of ’em would be drinking and talking — it was just like an attraction at a bar.”

Similarly, though less evocatively, Diane said the girls “played with themselves” at the parties. But Dorothy said she doesn’t remember the sexual skits, noting, “A lot of what went on was blocked by my young mind.”

The girls didn’t have to strip off their clothes because they were usually already naked anyway. Romola often went around topless in the Australian heat, Lenore said.

“We lived naked most of our life,” she said. “One day I realized I was naked when a neighbor boy came by. I hid behind a little scrub bush.”

Like Diane, she recalled the family hitting the nudist camps before going to Australia.

“We’re used to be naked, it was part of our upbringing,” she said.

“We ate lean,” she added. “We lived on sauerkraut and corned beef, no toys, nothing — barely clothes.”

‘Play with your toys’

Lenore remembers the dildos, too. However, these were not used in the erotic skits the children had to perform.

“Those were for his own private measurements,” she said, “so he would know when we were big enough for him to enter us. That’s why Dorothy told me to stop doing it. I’ll never forget her telling me that.”

They would only use the dildos in the basement, up to “several times a week, if we wanted to,” she said. Wilkie called them their toys.

“He’d say, ‘Why don’t you go play with your toys?’ He would watch a lot.”

In addition, Lenore and Jenean both recall their father making them watch him pee. Lenore noted this behavior is known as “grooming,” in which the predator conditions the victim.

In fact, all of these behaviors — from pressuring a child to engage in sexual activities, indecent exposure of the genitals to a child, displaying pornography to a child, actual sexual contact with a child and viewing of the child’s genitalia — are textbook examples of sexual abuse.

Pre-Purple memories

Lenore also remembers when Wilkie was on trial in Australia for attacking Dorothy, and how she cried because she was too young to attend.

Both of his daughters recall how the family used to move, frequently and suddenly. Lenore said, even as a young girl, she figured this was because he had either gotten into trouble for some sexual or other incident or was running away from a girlfriend.

Again, at least for Lenore, there were also some good memories mixed in with those of the chaotic sexual abuse.

“He came home with an electric banana that he made in Australia, with lights that flashed in different times,” she said. “It was beautiful. It didn’t really look like a banana, it was like a tube.”

She, too, remembers his high-octane beer, made in garbage cans, with sugar and yeast, and heated by light bulbs.

Curious about dad

As for why she sought out her father after his release from prison, she said, “I was curious what he was like. Everybody had told Jenean and me, don’t try to find him, don’t talk to him.”

It didn’t freak her out to see her former college professor father now as a longhaired hippie bedecked all in purple.

“When I came to New York, I just accepted him,” she said.

However, not long after she got the IUD, she left Wilkie because he wasn’t feeding her enough. The vegan diet Wilkie and Eve ate was too spartan for her.

“In the morning, they would have a mung bean-sprout shake — with banana, whatever they had left over — and brewer’s yeast,” she recalled. “For lunch, they’d have like cantaloupe or salad or bread and some cheese. I split from him because I had to get something to eat.”

A van parked on Avenue A last week with a message from September praising Adam Purple as the godfather of urban gardening and alerting people to his memorial at La Plaza Cultural in the East Village. None of his family members attended the memorial. Photo by Lincoln Anderson

A van parked on Avenue A last week with a message from September praising Adam Purple as the godfather of urban gardening and alerting people to his memorial at La Plaza Cultural in the East Village. None of his family members attended the memorial. Photo by Lincoln Anderson

 

From Purple to trouble

She wandered over to Washington Square, where she met a man who offered her a joint. It turned out, though, he was a pimp.

“He was on the prowl,” she said.

At first, she actually thought the idea didn’t sound too bad.

“I thought, I liked sex and I liked money,” she said.

But it soon became a nightmare and she found herself in the Bronx working as a prostitute that fall and winter.

“The guy beat the s–t out of me a few times,” she recalled. “It was horrible, guns and chains. Yeah, I’ve seen it all, I haven’t done it all. He shaved my head. I got away, I went to a Krishna temple in Brooklyn.”

She left the city, but returned a few years later, again at first living with her father on Forsyth St. After a painting job fell through, she found herself working as a prostitute again to make money.

“When I came back at 19, I was walking the streets,” she said. “I wasn’t going to go to a massage parlor.

“He was sort of a grouch the second time,” she recalled. “The first time he was just a pervert.”

This time around, he complained about her cigarette smoking.

“I rolled my own from a Drum pouch,” she said. “He used to smoke a pipe but quit. He was a macrobiotic vegetarian Zen Buddhist, so he didn’t like the tobacco in his pure peace.”

Again, she left him, but once more ran into trouble.

“I was on the streets,” she recalled. “These five guys surrounded me with five guns. They drugged me with a mind-suggestive drug and made me do a triple-X-rated blackmarket film. They said, ‘You wanna make $25,000?’ I never got anything. Afterward, they dumped me in a bathroom in Grand Central.”

Homeless years

For 24 years, starting at 16, Lenore was homeless.

“I would sleep anywhere — side of the road, abandoned building, under a bridge, out in the woods,” she said.

She sometimes would hang out with the Rainbow Family and also the STP (Sagittarius, Pisces, Taurus) Family, the latter sort of the forerunners to today’s train-hopping “crusty travelers.”

“The STP was like the beginning of all that,” she said.

Her lifestyle continued this way — homeless, prostitution off and on — until age 40, when she finally found a good program for the homeless in Montana, where she now lives in an apartment.

“That’s when I got off the streets,” she said.

Asked if she felt being raised in a hypersexualized environment — where the tots were “trained how to give pleasure to a man” — led her to become a sex worker, she said, “I do, definitely.”

‘Stepmother was guilty’

She also feels Romola was even more guilty than her husband, simply because Wilkie was so completely bonkers.

“David had an excuse for being out of it,” she said. “He was so, so, so, so insanely genius that he couldn’t get to reality. Life was a game. Romola was no innocent bystander. She should have been prosecuted.

“Oh, he was crazy,” she said of her father. “I’m sure he had a diagnosis if he ever went to a shrink. He was a genius and a strange duck and he did the best he could.”

Romola, in one of her letters to Jenean and Lenore’s grandparents when Wilkie was facing prison, had written that he could have avoided jail and been out on bond if he only submitted to psychological treatment.

“He was too good for that,” Lenore said. “He could play games with anybody. Oh, they would have locked him up if they could have, but he wouldn’t let ’em.”

Lenore today. For 24 years, until age 40, she was homeless. “I couldn’t cope,” she said of her life before. “I was really emotionally disturbed. When you’re on the streets, nobody cares. But where I live now has a really good homeless program.”

Lenore today. For 24 years, until age 40, she was homeless. “I couldn’t cope,” she said of her life before. “I was really emotionally disturbed. When you’re on the streets, nobody cares. But where I live now has a really good homeless program.”

Purple’s positive legacy

Of the four women, Lenore and Jenean — but especially Lenore — despite Wilkie’s sexual deviancy, still value his contributions as a guerilla gardener and sustainability pioneer.

“He showed me his plan for greenhouses and [ecologically based] cities, his urban planning,” Lenore said. “He was way ahead of his time, in terms of an ecological, carbon-safe environment. That’s his gift to the world, not his urban gardening. What he did before, it still counts — and also what he did after. He reinvented himself. I don’t care what anyone else says, it counts.”

Another of his best traits was his resourcefulness, she said, a product of his rural Missouri roots.

“Reusing, recycling — he was from the old school. He grew up on a farm,” she said.

His father was German — very strict — she said. But he died when Wilkie was young in an electrical fire in a printing shop he had in the back of their property. She thinks that printing shop inspired Wilkie’s trademark rolled-up leaflets advocating the likes of “World Bike-in,” “General Rent Strike,” “World Orgy” and “World S–t-in” that he would hand out to people as he biked up to Central Park to scoop up horse manure for the garden.

Therapy and recovery

Like Jenean and Lenore, Dorothy turned to therapy in midlife to help her, at last, deal with the traumatic feelings she had locked away deep inside. Her therapist taught her to forgive, “or it eats you up inside,” Dorothy said.

Still, she can never fully forgive Wilkie for what he did to her.

“I think he ruined things for me,” she said. “It’s very hard to recover.”

Of the memorial service that was held for Wilkie at La Plaza Cultural, she said, “He doesn’t really deserve it. He was a monster. When they rang me to tell me he was dead, I thought, ‘Thank God’ — and then I said I shouldn’t say that because I forgive him. It was a reflex,” she said with a laugh.

Lenore has been twice married and twice divorced. She just turned 58 and is finally trying to quit smoking.

Dorothy, who worked as a taxi dispatcher, has a daughter.

Diane, who has children of her own and has also had horses, has worked many jobs, her longest as a coal miner.

“I was one of the first women to work at a coal mine in Wyoming,” she said. “I can operate heavy machinery. But I feel like I have a glass wall above me — I just could not break into the field.”

A loner, she recently joined a motorcycle club that includes police officers. Riding and hanging out with them, she said, she finally feels “safe.”

Jenean, who has a son and worked in the mental-health field, four years ago pulled up stakes and moved to an “intentional community” in the Northwest to find herself. She had said she decided to tell her story to The Villager to highlight the issue of complex post-traumatic stress disorder, which she self-diagnosed after other mental-health professionals had failed to identify it in her.

Diane is the only one who never sought professional help.

“I never had counseling because I had too much to do,” she said.

However, she added, “If Jenean didn’t speak out — I am so glad she did. It gives us a voice.”

In fact, following the publication of “The Dark side of Purple,” Jenean visited Diane, not having seen her since their childhood days in Australia. Both agree, though, that the reunion could have gone better, but at least they tried.

‘Why he was alone’

“That’s it, I’m done,” Lenore said after telling her tale to The Villager. “So now people will have the full story — of why he was alone. Even the Eves couldn’t put up with him. Even Adam couldn’t put up with him,” she said of Purple’s only son, Adam David, with Eve No. 2. (Adam David now lives in China, where he teaches English literature to Chinese students. He did not want to be quoted in the previous article and requested that his last name not be printed.)

In fact, there is at least one more daughter of Wilkie — Nova Dawn, who he had with Eve. No. 1. Lenore said she knows their real names, but would not divulge them, wanting to protect their privacy.

Wilkie clearly avoided detection on the Lower East Side all these years for his past conviction. Why that happened is partly because, prior to 1996, New York did not have a sex offender registry. A New York Police Department spokesperson explained that the sex offender registry works “going forward — not backward.”

Breaking the cycle

Studies have shown that sex offenders have a high rate of recidivism — even more so if they have never gone to jail for the crime — while their children are also more likely to become abusers themselves.

Above all, Jenean and Lenore both emphasized that they are thankful that the cycle of generational sexual abuse has not repeated in them or Diane or Dorothy or any of their children or any of Wilkie’s other children. According to them, Wilkie’s sister Anna revealed that Wilkie was sexually abused by his own mother, while Jenean and Lenore’s birth mother, Ann, said there was also sexual abuse on her side of the family.

“We beat the odds,” Lenore said. “None of us became abusers. We can heal. We all broke the cycle.”

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