Michael Smelly
March 9 -

Michael Smelly was reported to be a mildly retarded teenage boy who at the age of 13 was sent to the Florida School for boys. Just a few short months after having been sent to this horrible place, Michael was driven home in an ambulance and was no longer able to use his legs.

Michael was taken to the hospital and it was discovered that he had a tumor on his lower spine and surgery was done to remove the tumor. Michael's mother, Carol, helped him and he was eventually able to walk again. Michael decided it was time to tell his mother about the beatings he had been given by the staff at the Florida School For Boys:

"Mike was sent down there when he was nine years old. He had been
sent down there three different times and each time he come back, he
was paralized. Little by little I'd get him to walk again"

Michael was later sent back to the school, this time he went with his brother and two other boys. These four boys decided they were not going to stay at the school any longer and they came up with a plan to escape. When night fell, they took off and went through the swamp. First to be caught and brought back to the school, was Michael and eventually, all of the boys were caught and returned to the school.

Upon returning, the boys were taken to what was called "The White House' and they were all beaten. A boy named Donny had been one to try to run away that night and he said after the beatings, he noticed that Michael was not the same person he had been before.



Michael was unable to walk and he was sent home from the school:

"They warned him, don't be asking questions and don't be
talking to nobody. You were there under their care so there
wasn't nothing you could do about it. Yep, and there wasn't
nobody to help you.

Donny Schofner
(Last name might not be spelled right)

"I guess the last time he come home he asked me what did he
do so bad to deserve them beatings like that. Well, he didn't
do anything that bad"

Terry & Carol Smelly



Michael died a few months after being returned home from the school. He died of Carcinoma of the spine and lungs. Carol and Donny both agree that the beatings Michael received on his bottom and legs, made his condition worse. Carcinoma is defined as: A type of Cancer that develops from epithelial calls. Specifically, a Carcinoma is a Cancer that begins in a tissue that lines the inner or outer surfaces of the boy and that generally arises from cells originating in the endodermal or ectodermal germ layer during embryogenesis. Carcinomas occur when the DNA of a cell is damaged or altered and the cell begins to grow uncontrollable and become malignant

Experts said that it was possible that Michael had become sick with Carcinoma as a result of his injuries, however, it was very hard to prove.

"It changed me a lot. I used to be a plum person, love everybody, get
along with everybody. I just never have got over his death. Well I've been
bitter, real, very very bitter. All these years I've been so bitter and I just
wanted somebody to find out what they was doing to those boys
Carol Smelly



Michael is not the only boy from this school who has his story told on my site. You can read the story of another boy, read about the school and see pictures by clicking on the links below:


I want to thank June for sending me this story and for her pledge to keep me updated on what happens with others who were sent to this terrible School.

Death Occurred in the state of Florida
This page was created on April 11, 2015

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