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What happened at Deerfield

I was a teenager at the elite boarding school in the 1980s. He was my teacher, coach, and dorm parent. He was also a sexual predator.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter,” once wrote the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. I suppose in that sense my life may really just be starting now, at 48. For nearly three decades, I chose to remain largely silent about events dating back to my adolescence, but in June 2012, I wrote Deerfield Academy’s head of school, Margarita Curtis, disclosing that a venerated faculty member had sexually abused me during my senior year at the elite Western Massachusetts boarding school in the winter of 1983. It was a hard letter to write, and I imagine it was difficult to read, but the things I spoke of needed to be said, and said by me.

“I have not ever named the teacher, coach and dorm master who molested me,” I wrote in that e-mail. “But when I see the photos of returning alums at reunions being led in joyous song by the much-beloved ‘Czar,’ Peter Hindle, the same man who molested me as a Deerfield student living on his corridor, I feel a measure of sadness and chagrin.”

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