There is Something Very Wrong with the “Suicide” of William Kruse

by Scott Creighton 

UPDATE – (H/T to an old friend) – Go here to read about how the local county officials in various areas affected by all this BP made disaster are being co-opted by BP, the new Masters of the Gulf, and are harassing the residents with impunity just like any third-world corporate tyranny would.  BP’s head of security riding around in the taxpayer’s county patrol cars pulling over citizens and interrogating them because they filmed something, stealing their identification, intimidating them… while the deputy sits back and says nothing. This is Coca-Cola and Columbia right here in America. 

William Kruse


MSNBC has tried to redeem themselves. Yesterday they scrubbed out any mention of Capt. William Kruse’s death from their early morning article (which I pointed out), so today they are running with a Washington Post article devoted entirely to the subject. The Washington Post article calls Kruse’s death an “apparent” suicide.  I don’t think so.   

Here are the facts as I know them thus far… 

  • Kruse showed up in the morning to meet with his deck-hands as usual.
  • Kruse sent them to the local store to get ice and other supplies for the day’s work helping clean the oil out of the Gulf.
  • When they left Kruse was supposed to start-up his boat and meet them at the store where he would fuel it for the day.
  • As they were walking toward the store they heard a “pop” but thought it was nothing more than a firecracker.
  • After Kruse didn’t show at the store, they went back and found him in the wheel-house.
  • There is no suicide note.
  • BP owed Kruse $70,000 and Kruse was very angry about not being paid on time.
  • Kruse was an extremely vocal and outgoing man.  He was a community leader who all the other captain’s “looked up to
  • Kruse was on the board of the Orange Beach Fishing Association.
  • Other fishing boat captains came to him for advice.
  • Kruse had recently told one of them that the entire clean-up effort was a scam, it was “hopeless”, and that they had to just shut up and just do as they were told… that it was like living in “prison”.

Does that sound like a suicide to you? 

The Washington Post article is a perfect example of trying to mold the narrative in the media without any facts to support it. It goes on and on about how people are “depressed” in the gulf without really addressing William Kruse specifically except to say he has lost 20 pounds recently. Hell, I have lost 20 pounds recently. Take a man’s livelihood and his paychecks and that is bound to happen. 

The Post story also goes on to quote the President of the Orange Beach Fishing Association who sounds a lot like a guy trying to placate BP… the new masters of the Gulf. 

Ard said BP has done everything it said it would do and that despite setbacks and delays, “they have been working hard to make things right.”  Washington Post 

But the story doesn’t add up. Why would a guy show up to work, tell his crew to go invest in ice and supplies for the day’s work, then pop himself in the wheelhouse of his vessel as he was starting it up to go meet them and fuel-up for the day? He left no note and apparently left $70,000 dollars on the table for BP to keep (till the lawyers sort it out) 

Kruse was an well respected community leader among the fishing boat captains who was angry and outspoken about what was happening to the area he loved and worked on for 2 decades and he just up and “kills himself” under these conditions at this time?  I don’t buy it. 

Two weeks and two days ago, with his fishing grounds closed, Kruse, 55, took a job working for BP’s cleanup crew. For the very people who’d caused the mess. 

Other boat captains said Kruse, like them, found the effort confusing, overly bureaucratic and frustrating. He told them to keep their heads down, not to worry about the hassles. But those close to him saw he was losing weight. 

On Wednesday morning, Kruse drove to his boat as usual. As the deckhands prepared for the day’s work, Kruse, as the captain, was supposed to turn on the generator. But after a few minutes, the crew members said, they didn’t hear anything and went looking for him. A deckhand found him in the wheelhouse, shot in the head. 

The Baldwin County, Ala., coroner’s office called his death an apparent suicide and said Kruse didn’t leave a note…. 

… Frank Kruse, his identical twin brother who is a probate lawyer in Mobile, Ala., said his brother was waiting for about $70,000 in payments from BP for working two of his boats for the past two weeks. “There’s no question in my mind that this is directly related to the oil spill,” 

Other fishermen, who looked up to Kruse as a veteran captain, turned to him for advice

“His quote to me was, ‘Don’t try to rationalize it. . . . Just sign your name and get on your boat, and don’t try to tell anybody how to run the program, and don’t try to tell ’em what the local knowledge is,’ ” Capt. Chris Garner said. The point was: The cleanup is hopeless, and you’ll just tire yourself out trying to improve the situation. “I said, ‘Rookie, that sounds an awful lot like prison,’ ” meaning the loss of control, Garner said Wednesday. “He said, ‘That’s a pretty good analysis, Chris. It’s just like prison.’ And he didn’t make it another week.”  Washington Post 

The entire “suicide” explanation comes from what the local county coroner said. He told an earlier interviewer that the reason he figured it was a suicide was because the “investigator” told him William Kruse’s friends had made statements to that effect.  I don’t see any listed in this article. In fact, I don’t see how Kruse was going though anything any worse than most of these guys in the Gulf are dealing with on a daily basis. 

In fact, the only statement from a friend that I have read so far says something entirely different… 

Baldwin County Coroner Stan Vinson said witnesses told investigators that Kruse had been upset about the loss of business caused by the closing of fishing grounds and public perceptions of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. 

… ”He didn’t show any signs he was going to this that would have thrown up any red flags where you’d think you better keep an eye on him,” Bell said. “He wasn’t any more aggravated with the whole situation than any of the rest of us. “ 

Bell added, however, that Kruse did like to know what was going on and was particularly frustrated with the lack of straight answers coming from BP about the Vessel of Opportunity program and particularly about how he was to be paid once his 2 boats were deployed.  AI 

There is something very wrong with the official story of the death of William Kruse.

10 Responses

  1. Strike these BP bastards. First the Labor Camps, and now, this!

    I’d bet anything their stockholders are getting their dividends on time. Let them come down and clean it up. Better yet, make them come down and clean it up–them, and all the “Drill, baby, drill!” mouthpieces.

    r ap

  2. will,

    Considering the times we’re in, it is natural to be skeptical of any claim like this.

    No, it does not sound like the events that would lead up to a suicide.

    However, there still doesn’t seem to be enough information to construct any kind of al;ternative explanation.

    Did the Captain have any family or personal history going on that would provide an explanation?

    Maybe his change of fortune made personal crises come up…

    I think the fact that he was doing BP work would make people suspicious that some skulduggery was afoot, but there is, as yet, no information to suggest what that connection might be.

    Did the Captain see something he wasn’t supposed to?


  3. Remember, sometimes its what the MSM doesn’t say that gives us this valuable insight you are looking for.

    If there were family members who thought this was probably a suicide, don’t you think the press would have reported that? I mean, they were reporting on how the entire Gulf is ready to whack themselves… they are desperate to make his suicide seem like the logical conclusion… but no mention of family or personal history to back up the claim…

    I don’t think it’s what he saw as much as what he could have been becoming.

    We know he is a leader… other captains look up to him which means their crews ALSO look up to him.

    What are they doing in Columbia for coca-cola? They are whacking influential leaders, people who can rally the other oppressed workers to stand up. “Norma Rae” if you like.

    I was interested in the story because it is a heartbreaking one. Here we have a seemingly good man, running two boats, supporting his workers, living down here on the Gulf… who takes his own life due to what is admittedly BP’s fuck-up and their consequential stiffing of the people hardest hit by this.

    But once I started reading more and more about it, something is really rotten about this. Are we turning into Columbia?

    do you think the Columbian government runs around telling their citizens that the labor leaders are being killed by corporate deathsquads? of course not.

  4. The FBI stated DR IVANS death was a suicide. Who here today beleives that?

  5. the “DC Madame” she killed herself too, right? and who was the guy who shot himself in the head… twice? and how about the scientist in England who killed himself with a butter knife or someshit? what was his name? all suicides, right?

  6. 30 years ago I was personally responsible for initiating the production of a TV Movie-of-the-Week on the CBS network entitled “Angel City,” from the novel of the same name by author Patrick Smith. It starred Paul Winfield and Ralph Waite. It was a story about A BANKRUPT FARMER who went to Florida for work picking produce, and his whole family ended up enslaved in a labor camp. 1980 was the year it was broadcast. As an idealistic kid in the film business, I once thought TRUE ISSUES, told in a dramatic way, could change people, wake them up. Now I know better. We are all wallowing around together in hell – whether it’s oil, corruption, greed, or our own messed up minds. Take your pick. Actually, we want to forget that this is nothing new. 30 years ago, or 3,000 years ago — it has always been the same with the human race. You can’t whitewash reality, anymore than you can scrub up the beach at Pensacola. The dirt will change composition and move elsewhere, that’s all. Am I a cynic? Yes. Do I still have hope? Yes. I’ve spent several years now scraping the crud off of the battered shell of the Christian faith which we have all been betrayed by. But I am here to declare that the pearl of great price is still there, if you look for it. And NO ONE can do that but you yourself, for you yourself. Anno Domini 2010. Christus vincit. Christus regnat. Christus imperat. I’m glad I took Latin in high school after all. – Helena

  7. I was wondering about this when I saw your article.
    What doesnt add up is
    No history of mental ilness (not a suicide candidate)
    No note
    Despondent over lack of business but BP hired him
    I think somebody should look into his previous income. Good chance BP paid more.
    Why no comments from his family? Not sedated yet?

  8. Where is the record of the ballistics on the bullet? Whose gun was used? Where is it now? What did the scene of the death look like? Where was he shot? If the coronor is not asking these questions, then shouldn’t a detective hired by the family?

  9. I was in a meeting with Riki Ott when we got a phone call about this. I definately thought it suspicious.

  10. Merita Debbie Marble Blanchet
    Seems a few people are trying to read something into the death and apparent suicide of Captain Kruse early on in the BP nightmare here along the Gulf Coast..I truly believe they are reading something in to this that is just not there.. The many who knew Bill never suspected anything other than the Captain had been pushed too far and saw his business as never being what it use to be…He saw no light at the end of the tunnel as many others did at that particular time. There were too many untruths being spread around by those who wanted to profit off a disaster.. They are partially to blame for his death…and many of them continue today by sensationalizing every aspect of the disaster..

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