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Disconnected at birth — another infuriating Scientology saga

[Brian Sheen and his daughter Spring]

We’ve written several stories about Brian Sheen, a Florida man who left Scientology many years ago, but who never had a problem with his daughter, Spring, continuing in the organization. But after Spring married into a wealthy Scientology donor family in 2014, she got the order from the church to cut off all contact with her father.

Sheen was devastated, and tried to fight back by complaining to the state government. He’s also put out several interesting videos, and a website about his daughter.

Then, this week, he received bittersweet news. He’s a grandfather.

“I didn’t even know my daughter was pregnant,” Brian tells us.

He’s grateful that he’s received photographs of his new grandson, Leo, but Scientology disconnection will keep him from meeting the little boy.


And Brian Sheen’s crime?

Well, that’s just it. As we explained in previous stories, Sheen has never been given a clear answer from the church why his daughter had to cut off all ties from him. As far as he knows, he’s being punished for walking away from the church more than 30 years ago.

Sheen was so enthusiastic about Scientology as a young man, he spent time on the yacht Apollo in the early 1970s, the ship that sailed the Mediterranean and Atlantic and from which L. Ron Hubbard ran his worldwide organization. Sheen’s timing wasn’t great, however. He happened to be on the ship in 1974 when Hubbard instituted a new form punishment called the Rehabilitation Project Force (RPF), and Sheen wanted no part of it. He left the ship and the Sea Organization but remained in the church, working in a Boston mission and then setting up his own Scientology field office in West Palm Beach before his involvement faded away around the year 1979.

By that time he was OT 7 — the highest level available then on the “Bridge to Total Freedom” — and he also paid for the expensive “L Rundowns.” But then he changed his mind and asked for a refund on what he’d paid for the L’s, a big no-no in Scientology. But Sheen says that he managed to take advantage of an “amnesty” offered at the time and remained in good standing with the church. While he stopped his involvement, he never had a problem with the church, and he never discouraged his daughter Spring’s progress in Scientology, which was encouraged by her mother. (She and Sheen had split only a year after Spring was born.)

Spring grew up in the Bay Area and became a dj for corporate events, and she met and married a man named Ryan Atkinson-Baker. Sheen had no idea, until we informed him, that his daughter’s in-laws are wealthy owners of a national court reporting business and have donated millions to the Church of Scientology.

Several months after the wedding, Sheen received a letter from the church telling him that he had been “declared” a “suppressive person,” requiring other Scientologist to cut off all ties with him. And although Spring clearly didn’t want to do so, she obeyed and cut her father out of her life.

Sheen has been given no explanation why, 36 years after he walked away from Scientology, his family was ripped part.

And now, he can’t see his first grandson.

Scientology: It never fails to find a new way to be cruel.

We’ve added Leo Atkinson-Baker to our disconnection roll below.

Disconnected at birth.


[Leo Sheen Atkinson-Baker]


Chris Shelton talks to Karen Pressley

Says Chris: “Karen Pressley’s new book, ‘Escaping Scientology,’ has just been published and I was happy to interview her about this new book and her experience in Celebrity Center and International Management of Scientology. Enjoy!”



Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 4,875 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 21 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,084 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 1,858 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 2,632 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 1,978 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 2,472 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 1,512 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 1,224 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 750 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 4,839 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 1,979 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 2,299 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 2,274 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 630 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 4,932 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,039 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis for 1,441 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 1,314 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 895 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 1,400 days.
Mary Jane Sterne has not seen her daughter Samantha in 1,644 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 12,753 days.


3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on September 16, 2017 at 07:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2016 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Undergound Bunker (2012-2016), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield


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