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Can someone let Tom Cruise know that his Scientology bandleader has died?

In 2004, as part of the plan to turn Tom Cruise into the most gung-ho Scientologist on the planet, church leader David Miscavige threw a special surprise birthday party for the Top Gun actor on the church’s private cruise ship, the Freewinds.

Tom was turning 42 that July 3, and the shindig culminated with a mini-concert of various songs from Tom’s films performed by Scientology’s in-house orchestra and singer Stacy Francis.

You may have seen video of that night’s party, with Tom at one point jumping up to join in the singing of the Bob Seger hit “Old Time Rock and Roll.”

What others may have missed but that we always note when we watch that video is that playing lead trumpet and leading the band is David Miscavige’s own father, Ron Miscavige, who was both a Scientology Sea Org member (having signed a billion-year contract) and a musician who performed at Scientology functions, like Tom’s blowout.


Yesterday afternoon, we reported the news of Ron Miscavige’s death at 85 by posting a heartfelt remembrance written by Dan Koon, Ron’s friend and co-author of their 2016 book, Ruthless: Scientology, My Son David Miscavige, and Me.

Ron wrote that book after making a daring escape from his Scientology servitude in 2012, and then blowing the whistle on what really goes on in the church under his tyrant of a son. And one of the anecdotes he told was about being punished while on the ship.

Can someone please inform Tom Cruise that his best friend Dave’s dad died?

We figure Tom might be unaware that the kind older man who blew a mean trumpet and led the band at his big party in 2004 was not only father to his (two-time) Best Man, but that Ron had gone on to expose Dave for the totalitarian martinet that he is.

We would hate for Tom to be unaware of this. He’d surely be interested in making a public statement of condolences for Ron’s wife and rest of his family.

Wouldn’t he?


Bonus items from our tipsters

They sure know how to party in Detroit.



Austin reels in another fish!



Source Code

“If you’ve had dreams of just going right straight through to Clear without ever being a Release, why, you might as well come off of it because — That’s all right, you and a lot of others will learn how to do Class VII before you’re through, so. It isn’t too hard to do. But that’s the easiest and safest way. And then you find out R6 materials, they just run like a bomb. My God! There’s nothing to it because you’re just right straight at it and everything as-ises like mad.” — L. Ron Hubbard, June 29, 1965


Avast, Ye Mateys

“A shark swam alongside today and said, ‘Who is it?’ and I said ‘Who is what?’ and he said, ‘Who is petitioning to leave out here in mid ocean?’ And I said ‘How’d you know that?’ And he said, ‘you’re not tearing up your despatches very good before you throw them over.’ He was real put out. Thought I was invalidating him by saying he couldn’t read. I ordered him to Review and get rid of the ARC Break but he hasn’t any priority — and anyway he’ll have to wait for our waterproof E-Meter. He’s out there now muttering. Do I get some Dianetic sessions today or do I put the shark on course?” — The Commodore, June 29, 1969


Overheard in the FreeZone


“Never has there been such an opportunity to go free of unwanted conditions or just the FUN of going up the bridge. It is such a great game. I really don’t understand why people aren’t just flocking to my services. I have the rare experience of having traveled the experimental ‘bridge’ where LRH wrote a PAB (Professional Auditor’s Bulletin) and I/we went and applied the latest process to the preclear. Has the Free Zone become just another disaffected area? I know Clears, happy with being clear, not interested in taking the next step on the bridge. Is it an ARC broken field? I have such a gift to offer you at a price almost everyone can afford. While preclear + auditor are greater than the bank, c/s + solo auditor is greater that whatever is there that distracts you and I can get you through the bridge. My hat on Div 3, finances, says I charge $150 a month plus $100 programming one time, to find out what is needed and wanted by you.
From my hat as a c/s, auditing is for you. If you aren’t getting auditing or giving auditing and ever wanted to, the the stops on the line are really just out rudiments. If you’re trained to solo audit you can fly your ruds, then make a plan with me to get way up the bridge with flying colors! What I’m telling you is that the bridge is so possible still. Take advantage of it.”


Past is Prologue

1995: MTV this week aired a special news broadcast about cults, and included some discussion of Scientology. Stacy Young and Scientology PR person Leisa Goodman were interviewed. A transcript was posted to a.r.s, anonymously. Some excerpts: “LODER: But according to former scientologists, members aren’t given the church’s full liturgy until after taking many expensive courses. Although Scientology executives deny it, former longtime members say that eventually followers are told that some of these ‘engrams’ are the remnants of space aliens called ‘body thetans’ who are placed there by the galactic overlord ‘Xenu’. STACY YOUNG: It’s a very science-fiction world, um, it has a, galactic confederacy … it’s a very romantic … view of the world. LODER: I don’t understand, there’s like a galactic overlord Xenu… is there a whole staff of characters… or is that not true? GOODMAN: Ohh uhh… I don’t think … I don’t really know what you mean. What you’re talking about. LODER: At one point, 11 Scientologists, including Hubbard’s wife, were convicted of conspiracy and burglary, of IRS offices. GOODMAN: Actually the people who did that, were booted out of the church. It’s got _nothing_ to do with Scientology. And, um… LODER: In the end, the IRS granted Scientology the tax exempt religious
status it wanted. A move IRS spokesman now decline to discuss.”


Random Howdy

“Tommy must shudder whenever he hears Leah’s name and he imagines what D.M. would be doing to him, if he could, considering his ‘you don’t have the fucking rank’ was a major catalyst in her defection.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker


Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for August 9. Trial tentatively scheduled for early November.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff’s sentencing to be scheduled.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Pretrial conference August 21 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: June 18 pretrial conference delayed until July 9.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Petition to US Supreme Court submitted on May 26. Scientology has until June 25 to respond.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: California Supreme Court grants review on May 26, asks Second Appellate Division to direct Judge Steven Kleifield to show cause why he granted Scientology’s motion for arbitration.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Dec 17: Feshbachs sign court judgment obliging them to pay entire $3.674 million tax debt, plus interest from Nov 19.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 24.

Concluded litigation:
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29. Bond revoked Sep 14. Nobbe dead, Sep 14.
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe dismissed the lawsuit on May 15 after the Clearwater Police dropped their criminal investigation of her allegations.



We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links, including our four days in Los Angeles covering the preliminary hearing and its ruling, which has Danny facing trial and the potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison.


After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society. Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in a weekly series. How many have you read?



[ONE year ago] Scientology’s global virus playacting was supplied by giant California slave labor plant
[TWO years ago] David Miscavige’s pet projects result in constant fundraising pressure
[THREE years ago] In Scientology, going Clear is like leasing a car, and David Miscavige is Repo Man
[FOUR years ago] HowdyCon: Aussie journalist Steve Cannane’s response to Marty Rathbun
[FIVE years ago] Why Lisa Marie Presley’s custody battle likely has nothing to do with Scientology
[SIX years ago] Augustine: Taking a hard look at Scientology’s slush fund, the unlicensed and unregulated IAS
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology Sunday Funnies: The Nancy Cartwright freak-out edition
[EIGHT years ago] When Jon Atack Declared David Miscavige a Suppressive Person


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 2,346 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,851 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,371 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,391 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,282 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,589 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,457 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,231 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,561 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,035 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,351 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,917 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,836 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,004 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,585 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,846 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,884 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,597 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,122 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 477 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,652 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,203 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,352 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,672 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,527 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,646 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,002 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,305 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,411 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,813 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,685 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,268 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,763 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,017 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,126 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on June 29, 2021 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post 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 new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, 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, 1995-2020 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2020), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | 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 | Shelly Miscavige, 15 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 | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


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