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Ned McCrink, 1954-2022: The OC Ideal Org’s biggest donor sailed away from Scientology

We were stunned and saddened to learn that Ned McCrink, formerly Orange County, California’s top Scientology donor, ended his life on Monday morning. He was 67.

Ned provided us some crucial help on a couple of important stories through his extensive knowledge of the Orange County scene, and he continued to correspond with us about a number of different topics. We enjoyed his curiosity, his infectious good humor, and his kind words about this website.

Luis Garcia, another former OC donor who left Scientology and then sued the church, was equally shocked to hear the news from us. He said that he had received a final text from his friend Ned on Monday morning at 6:44 am. It read, “Hey Luis, love you and admire your courage for all you have done.”

“I thought it was kind of odd because it was early. I said thanks, man,” Luis tells us. “I am dumbfounded because I would never have thought this person would have done such a thing. Never in a million years. He was so uplifting. He was an optimist, always cheerful. And he had so much to live for. I just didn’t see this coming at all. He never reached out to me. Nothing.”



[Ned, second from left, at a Super Power Building groundbreaking in Clearwater, Florida in 1998]

Ned was a longtime and major donor for the church. Luis says that when Scientology was raising funds for its Orange County “Ideal Org” in the early 2000s, Ned dwarfed the other benefactors with a million-dollar donation.

In 2010, Luis left the church, two years before the Ideal Org was opened in Santa Ana in 2012. When Luis put up a web posting about his disaffection, he says that Ned was one of only two of his former Scientology friends who responded.

“He wrote to me a week or two later. ‘I don’t agree, and I hope you change your mind,’ he said. Under the circumstances that’s all he could do.”

Luis says that Ned’s own adventure out of Scientology began after the Ideal Org that Ned had provided so much money for had been completed.

“His big crime was that he wrote a Knowledge Report that there were only two other students beside him in this huge Ideal Org. What’s going on, he asked? Day after day, just two other students.”

McCrink had donated a million dollars so that Scientology could open its new cathedral, based on promises from church leader David Miscavige that it would usher in a massive influx of new members.

That hadn’t happened. And when Ned filed a report on it, he found himself declared an “illegal pc” — someone who was ineligible to receive Scientology services.

Ned McCrink was no longer welcome in the building he had largely paid for.

“After a year fighting the process, he received a ‘non-enturbulation order.’ And then his daughter wrote him a letter of disconnection. That’s when he reached out to me. He wrote me an email. ‘I’m out now, would you like to talk?’ he said.”

Ned left Scientology in 2016 and reached out to us a couple of years later, and we corresponded regularly with him until this past November.

Ned spent a lot of time sailing, his biggest passion, Luis says. “He was happy-go-lucky. A big guy. He was into music. He played the guitar. He was very likeable. He had opinions but he wasn’t opinionated. He let you know what he thought, but always in a good way.”

He also helped out other former Scientologists who were struggling. In one case, Ned revealed to us that he had given a struggling younger former Scientologist thousands of dollars to help them get a better living situation and a better job.


And he was very interested in Luis’s lawsuit against Scientology, and tried to help him with it.

“He spent weeks with me preparing for the arbitration. Putting together evidence. Ned helped a lot. He loaned me policies, books, binders. We’d meet at Starbucks for hours working on my strategy,” Luis says.

“I’m shocked. He was great.”


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Source Code

“That’s a trick I learned from Commander Thompson, by the way. He used to train cats. It’s almost impossible to train a house cat — I mean really train a house cat into doing all sorts of dog tricks and so forth. He used to be able to do that, and he taught me how to train cats when I was a kid. He would wait for the cat to do something and then he’d reward it. And if you don’t think that requires patience! You’re going to wait for this cat to do something that’s going to be totally accidental, and then you’re going to approve of it. Wow! Oh, you can just burn up hours and hours and hours trying to train a cat.” — L. Ron Hubbard, February 11, 1957


Avast, Ye Mateys


“TIME MACHINE ORDERS: I issue a lot of TM orders and queries. Very many of them are routed straight back to me. Those who don’t know what dreadful things happen to their Ethics Files if the TM doesn’t know they have answered the order or query should find out very fast as some Ethics Files must be getting very fat indeed. Those who think they know should check up on it. The PL to refer to is in Vol 0 of the OEC Book.” — LRH Pers Comm, February 11, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“When I was inside the ship and talking to a gray in telepathy, my body was not there, only me. Therefore there is nothing physical that can create sound, or hear sound. A spirit being normally communicates with radio frequencies, so from my experience it was like this entity was literally putting the sound in me. It is much different than hearing sound. So this would be an OT ability.”


Past is Prologue

1999: Scientology celebrity Jenna Elfman is the subject of a cover story in Us magazine. “Her belief in Scientology, she says, has taught her that she is the cause, not the effect, of what happens in her life. And say what you will about Scientology — and you can bet people will — it certainly seems that she is the maker of her own destiny. “Early on, Bodhi [Elfman] bet her $100 she couldn’t quit smoking pot. ‘I was like, I’ll show you–I’ll sell it back,’ she recalls. ‘And I haven’t had it since.’ He also introduced her to the Church of Scientology and the teachings of its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, which changed her entire worldview. In contrast to such celebrity Scientologists as Tom Cruise and John Travolta, who discuss their religion rather warily, Elfman sees herself as something of an ambassador for it. ‘All I know is that there were a lot of things that were holding me back and making me crazy,’ she says. ‘I used to be so confused. I knew I could achieve my dreams, but I wasn’t doing it. And with Scientology, I could find what I was doing wrong. It’s really simple, and the progress can be lightning fast.”


Random Howdy

“I think Tony is taking the day off and that’s just fine by me. Watch some football or somethin’ everybody.”



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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next pretrial conference May 31. Trial scheduled for August 29.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Last hearing was on January 18, referred to grand jury.
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 March 25 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for February 11.
Joseph ‘Ben’ Barton, Medicare fraud: Pleaded guilty, awaiting sentencing.
Yanti Mike Greene, Scientology private eye accused of contempt of court: Next hearing February 15.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Eleventh Circuit affirmed ruling granting Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Garcias considering next move.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ US Supreme Court denied Valerie’s petition Oct 4.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Scientology has said it will file an anti-SLAPP motion.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for June 28.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Appeal hearing held Aug 23-27. Awaiting a ruling.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Lawsuit filed by the FTC and state of Georgia in August, now in discovery phase.



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 icon and double OT 8 Chick Corea dies at 79 of cancer
[TWO years ago] Another drone’s eye view of the compound where Scientology is keeping Shelly Miscavige
[THREE years ago] Untouchable? Scientology’s 60-year plan to protect itself from the law
[FOUR years ago] Scientology targets the Red Cross in its latest sneaky front group scheme
[FIVE years ago] What happens when Scientology helps you reach ‘your full potential’
[SIX years ago] The disgraced sheriff, the Holocaust survivor, and Scientology’s most unhinged front group
[SEVEN years ago] These are the superpowers Scientologists are paying big bucks to attain
[EIGHT years ago] It’s time to wake up our space cooties on Scientology’s New Operating Thetan Level Five!
[TEN years ago] Scientology Dramaturgy: Commenters of the Week!


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 2,572 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,077 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,597 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,617 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,508 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,815 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,683 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,457 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,788 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,261 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,577 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,143 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,062 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,230 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,811 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,072 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,108 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,823 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,348 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 703 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,878 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,429 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,578 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,898 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,753 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,872 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,228 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,531 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,637 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,035 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,911 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,494 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,989 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,243 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,352 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on February 11, 2022 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, 1995-2021 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2021), 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


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


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