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NEWS
March 27, 1997 | TONY PERRY and MICHAEL GRANBERRY and ANNE-MARIE O'CONNOR, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Police found the bodies of 39 young men, apparently cult members who believed they were sent to Earth as angels, lying dead on their backs Wednesday in a luxurious home here--victims of what authorities said appeared to be a mass suicide. The group they belonged to, called W.W. Higher Source, practiced celibacy and abstained from smoking and drinking, said Milt Silverman Jr., an attorney for the owner of the home where the men died.
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TRAVEL
September 17, 2006 | Robin Rauzi
THE new Spa at Rancho Valencia sprawls over 16,000 square feet of indoor-outdoor space. But it would be great to be able to measure it in gallons. Beyond scrub-and-rub treatments, the spa has a whole "Water Wellness" menu -- and the pools to prove it. The Aqua Float is the spa's version of Watsu, a form of floating shiatsu massage done in a pool that's kept precisely at a womb-like 98.6 degrees.
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NEWS
March 5, 1993 | KATHERINE B. LOWRIE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Set in a glorious profusion of eucalyptus, this lush community just inland from Del Mar is entangled in the drama of a whodunit that has captured the imaginations of those who live, work and visit here. Everyone, it seems, has solved the mystery of the guilt or innocence of Ian Stuart Spiro.
REAL ESTATE
May 14, 2006 | Barbara Levin, Special to The Times
In Southern California, "reasonably priced" real estate is a relative term. In San Diego County's Rancho Santa Fe, perennially on lists of the nation's wealthiest communities, Whispering Palms is such an oasis. What's it about Rancho Santa Fe -- "the Ranch" to locals -- is a tree-shaded area of trophy estates, horse properties and bridle paths. No cookie-cutter mansions here.
NEWS
March 28, 1997 | STEPHANIE SIMON and NICK ANDERSON and TONY PERRY, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
The 39 men and women who died in an apparent mass suicide here left behind mystical computer postings and matter-of-fact videos explaining that they were eager to graduate from their human shells and ascend into heaven on an alien spaceship--and to speed their way, they planned to whip up puddings tainted with coma-inducing sedatives. Authorities investigating the case said Thursday that the victims, who ranged in age from 20 to 72, meticulously planned their deaths.
NEWS
March 27, 1997 | GREG KRIKORIAN and JODI WILGOREN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
It was planned as a place of light and graceful ease, but for at least 39 members of an obscure, computer-oriented group called W.W. Higher Source, this gated community in the rolling hills of northern San Diego County somehow became the site of a cybernetic dark night of the soul. "It was rented out to some monks or lamas," Carol Kappan said of the house on Rancho Santa Fe's Colina Norte, where the apparent mass suicide occurred. "I never saw them.
NEWS
March 30, 1997 | MARIA L. La GANGA and TINA DAUNT, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
They were so smart, say their survivors in pain and in puzzlement. So smart. Way too smart to die like this. They were computer whizzes, musicians, a National Merit Scholarship winner, a former Republican candidate for state office, a jewelry store owner who was frightened of death, the daughter of a real estate agent, a father of six. "He was so smart," said Betsy Schultz, a family friend of John M. Craig, a.k.a.
NEWS
March 30, 1997
1931: Marshall Herff Applewhite is born to a traveling Presbyterian minister and his wife, who raise a family full of religion and music. Late 1960s: Applewhite lands professorship at St. Thomas University in Houston. He teaches music and sings in the Houston opera, but his emotive nature chafes against the school's formal traditions. Applewhite was reportedly homosexual--despite his wife and two children--and too sexually outgoing for the east Texas community.
NEWS
March 30, 1997 | JAMES RAINEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
When a mysterious man and woman known as "The Two" began seeking fellow travelers for a space trip to a higher world, they came to Los Angeles, to a tract home in Studio City, to the living room of a spiritualist and onetime advertising executive named Joan Culpepper.
NEWS
March 31, 1997 | Associated Press
The 39 Heaven's Gate cult members who committed suicide last week had insured themselves against being abducted, impregnated or killed by aliens, an insurance agent who specializes in unusual policies said Sunday. The cult bought a policy Oct. 10 that would pay out $1 million to each member's beneficiaries, said Simon Burgess, managing director of Goodfellow Rebecca Ingrams Pearson, an insurance brokerage.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 5, 2002 | TONY PERRY and LOUIS SAHAGUN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Here amid the eucalyptus trees, horse trails and multimillion-dollar mansions, where life is unhurried and gracious, residents have a new distinction: They live in the wealthiest community in the United States. With a burst of per capita income to $113,132, Rancho Santa Fe has nosed out Atherton and Woodside in the San Francisco Bay Area, Palm Beach, Fla., Bloomfield Hills, Mich., and other high-living rivals, according to U.S. census data released Tuesday.
NEWS
April 26, 1997 | From Associated Press
A group of homeowners has quietly moved to change the name of the street where 39 Heaven's Gate cult members killed themselves last month. Colina Norte, which drew worldwide attention when the cult committed mass suicide inside a hilltop mansion, will be known as Paseo Victoria, named for a child who lives on the street. Residents confirmed that they had met in recent days to vote on a new name because of continuing concerns about a string of "strange" visitors to their neighborhood.
NEWS
April 4, 1997 | GREG BRAXTON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
"Heaven's Gate: The Movie" may soon be coming to the small screen. Reversing its previous stance, ABC said Thursday that it has signed a deal with the Kushner-Locke Co. and InterAct Entertainment Inc. to produce a TV movie focusing on the Heaven's Gate cult and the 39 members who committed suicide last week in Rancho Santa Fe. The proposed film would center on the account of Richard Ford, the lone survivor of Heaven's Gate who left the cult four weeks before the members killed themselves.
NEWS
April 3, 1997 | TONY PERRY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Even as they prepared to commit suicide because life in this world was no longer bearable, members of the Heaven's Gate cult enjoyed some earthly pleasures: Gambling in Las Vegas, visiting Sea World, Mexico and San Diego's Wild Animal Park, and taking a bus trip through scenic parts of Northern California and southern Oregon. In Las Vegas, the cultists visited the Stratosphere Hotel amusement park in late February and won more than $20 at the slot machines.
NEWS
April 2, 1997 | STEPHANIE SIMON and LOUIS SAHAGUN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
One version features the reptilians and the orbs duking it out for control of Pluto. Another has a lucky few humans morphing into bald, dome-headed aliens as they drift off into cosmic bliss. Then there's the psychological drama approach: A youngish set designer, a film biz type, responds to an ad in the L.A.
NEWS
April 1, 1997 | TONY PERRY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Investigators probing the mass suicide in Rancho Santa Fe are convinced that the 39 dead constituted the entire Heaven's Gate cult and that the organization had no splinter groups or links to other cults, authorities said Monday. San Diego County Sheriff's Department homicide investigator Lt.
NEWS
April 2, 1997 | STEPHANIE SIMON and LOUIS SAHAGUN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
One version features the reptilians and the orbs duking it out for control of Pluto. Another has a lucky few humans morphing into bald, dome-headed aliens as they drift off into cosmic bliss. Then there's the psychological drama approach: A youngish set designer, a film biz type, responds to an ad in the L.A.
NEWS
March 27, 1997 | TERENCE MONMANEY and LARRY B. STAMMER, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Mystery shrouded the deaths, but there were also telling signs. The dozens of young men were dressed in black slacks, lying on their backs throughout the hillside mansion, neither trauma nor blood nor struggle in evidence. Whether the 39 people found in a Rancho Santa Fe house died in an orchestrated suicide or fell prey to mass murder wasn't clear late Wednesday. But the victims, said by the homeowner's attorney to belong to an extreme religious group calling itself the W.W.
NEWS
April 1, 1997 | DAVID REYES, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Employees of a local computer company were stunned to learn that at least two people who once worked beside them were Heaven's Gate cult members who perished in last week's mass suicide. The cult members had car-pooled daily to Subscriber Computing Inc., garbed in baggy pants and shirts buttoned to the neck, former employee Charles Gardner, 42, said Monday. He said that when he saw the names of Susan Elizabeth Nora Paup, 54, and Margaret Ella Richter, 46, in the newspaper, "my jaw just dropped."
NEWS
March 31, 1997 | TONY PERRY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Caught between the media's deafening clamor for information and the families' impassioned pleas for privacy, authorities investigating the mass suicide here sought a middle course: providing frequent briefings but withholding some key details. It was a policy that won praise from many in the media horde that descended on this ritzy community, many of them veterans of breaking stories that have deteriorated into rancorous confrontations between police and media.
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