At that time there was a curfew and after curfew nobody was on the streets. So, in other words: no witnesses. So they let the boys out of jail and told them to get on their way. And as they got going on out of town they were followed and intercepted about 25 miles outside of Meridian. A few months later they were found, up on the dam, buried, bodies crushed, covered up by bulldozers. Mangled and murdered by the Klan, but with the police's help.

FORMATIVE YEARS Dennis at three years old in 1962.
I really don't like to linger on Wade Boggs too much.

I always felt that he was a bigot, a modern-day Ty Cobb-type. I used to joke that if the ball was black he would've had 8,000 hits. In my opinion, he didn't like anything black. I don't think he even liked nighttime. He probably wouldn't even wear black shoes.

That's the way he was. A really good ballplayer? Yeah. A Hall of Famer? Yeah. But believe me, I didn't put him in the Hall of Fame. White people put him in the Hall of Fame. I don't think any black person would've voted for that motherfucker if they knew him like I did.

When my son was born I asked Wade if he would be the godfather. Now, I know that sounds crazy, but the thing is, I really liked and respected him those first few years. Especially as a ballplayer — as a hitter — I respected him. He was very unique, and most times he was an all-right guy.

Anyway, he didn't say anything about the godfather thing — yes or no. But during that time I felt like I was getting to know him better, and then he got in trouble with [mistress] Margo Adams and that whole thing happened. We were all reading stories about ourselves in the papers every day, supposedly [racist] stuff that Wade had supposedly told Margo. That was when I was like, "I don't know what I was thinking about asking this guy to be the godfather of my child." I didn't want this guy to be associated with my family at all.

It's weird. I was feeling good about him and what an ideal person he would be to be the godfather of my child, basically admiring him, and it all changed. And it's not like he's all bad; he could be a genuine person. But it was almost like there were two Wades, but unfortunately the one side of him took away the good side. And it's a shame, because I loved his family — his wife and daughter — to death.

It all came to a head when we got into a fight in Cleveland. I was sitting behind Wade on the bus and we were getting ready to pull up to the hotel. Just in that small, 20-minute span, things kind of got out of hand. We'd gotten off of the plane from Baltimore, and a lot of drinking had been done on that flight. A lot of us had consumed a lot of beers and shots.

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