By: Scott Bartz, former J&J executive
for 8 years.
COMMENTS BY A READER:
On September 29, 1982, seven people in the Chicago area died
after swallowing Extra Strength Tylenol
capsules full of cyanide.
In news photos, cyanide is a whitish powder that probably
looked like white Tylenol powder to the average, bleary-eyed
line worker during a long shift.
No one expected to find powered cyanide lying around.
"Look! Someone spilled Tylenol powder. Toss it back in the
hopper. Keep the capsule line moving."
NO MADMAN DROVE STORE TO STORE PLANTING CYANIDE-LACED
TYLENOL CAPSULES ON STORE SHELVES.
WHO SAW ANY MADMAN TAMPERING WITH TYLENOL IN RETAIL DRUG
THE FUMBLERS DID!...IN THEIR OWN IMAGINATIONS, WITH NO
PHOTOGRAPHS AND NO EVIDENCE.
THAT WEIRD, BOGUS MADMAN FANTASY NEVER HAPPENED IN REAL
SMALL KIDS INVENT IMAGINARY FRIENDS. FUMBLING TYLENOL
INVESTIGATORS INVENTED THEIR OWN IMAGINARY MADMAN.
THAT MADMAN FANTASY DIVERTED OFFICIAL INQUIRIES DOWN
SHADOWY, SPOOKY, DEAD END ALLEYS, WHERE FUMBLERS' SPECULATIONS
"LET'S INVENT A BOGEYMAN!" ONE FUMBLER SAID. "A REAL FREAK!"
HERDS OF FUMBLING AND EXHAUSTED, SLEEP-DEPRIVED AND
CAFFEINE-STOKED, HYPER-AGITATED INVESTIGATORS BOUNCED FROM ONE
PRIME SUSPECT TO ANOTHER, LIKE DRUNKS SWATTING AT PINK
ELEPHANTS AND BUTTERFLIES.
AS THEY MUNCHED DONUTS AND GUZZLED COFFEE, EACH FUMBLER
HURLED FRESH MAD WHOPPERS INTO THE MASTER WHOPPER HOPPER. AFTER
SEVERAL TENSE HOURS, A SICK GALLOWS HUMOR CREEPED IN LIKE A
GREEN FOG OFF LAKE MICHIGAN. THEY STARTED BEHAVING LIKE A
GAGGLE OF MOONSHINE SOUSED MARK TWAINS PUFFING UP FROG TALES
AND MIXING METAPHORS. EACH NEW WHOPPER IN THE HOPPER WAS
LOONIER THAN ALL THE PREVIOUS.
THE TYLENOL MADMAN SPROUTED A GLOWING SPIKED TAIL, PERFORMED
INVERTED MAGIC TRICKS, WAS A CHEMIST, PICKED OTHERS' NOSES,
COULD BITE THROUGH A LOOP TRAIN RAIL, HATED HIS MOTHER, ATE HIS
OWN SPAWN, DROVE A 7-CYLINDER CHEVY, HAD A 700 IQ, WAS
RETARDED, SMELLED EVIL, COULD FLY BACKWARDS FASTER THAN SANTA
CLAUS ON CHRISTMAS EVE, WAS INVISIBLE...AND DIDN'T EXIST.
THIS NEW WINDY CITY URBAN MYTH WAS BORN. THE "MADMAN GOING
STORE TO STORE," FABLE WENT VIRAL. FIRST AROUND CHICAGO. THEN
NATIONALLY. THEN GLOBALLY.
LIKE CHICAGO'S FAMOUS POST CIVIL WAR, FLESH-EATING
"CANDYMAN", THIS HOMESPUN MONSTER WAS SCARY AND EVIL!
ADULTS AND CHILDREN EVERYWHERE TREMBLED AND CRINGED. DEAD
PEOPLE REFUSED TO SLEEP ALONE IN THE GROUND.
IMAGINARY, CREEPY STUFF BECAME FACT IN FUMBLERS' MINDS.
FORMING A LYNCH MOB WAS SERIOUSLY BANDIED ABOUT, JUST LIKE THE
ONE WHICH HUNG "THE CANDYMAN".
IN HINDSIGHT, THE FUMBLER'S CONCOCTED TYLENOL CYANIDE MADMAN
STORIES SOUND AS CHURLISH AND SILLY AS SAYING A MADMAN WENT
STORE TO STORE PUMPING SAMONELLA INTO MILK AND COTTAGE
SCIENCE LONG AGO PROVED DAIRY SAMONELLA FLOWS THROUGH MILK
REFINERIES IMPROPERLY PASTURIZING RAW MILK THAT ALREADY
CONTAINS WILD SAMONELLA, AND NOT FROM MADMEN PROWLING RETAIL
Samonella outbreaks pop up from time to time in eggs, canned
meats, vegetables, milk products and uncooked food without any
Sloppy workers in dairy refineries are the avenues for dairy
samonella Into breakfast cereal and coffee creamer.
The same thing happened with Tylenol.
Officials have long cited the scarcity of physical evidence
and apparent lack of motive to explain why they never solved
the Tylenol murders.
Duh! Wonder why?
In October 1982, Johnson and Johnson recalled and burned
millions of Tylenol capsules, and the public flushed millions
more Tylenol capsules down their crappers, at the frantic
request of Illinois Attorney General Tyrone Fahner.
Why? That burning and flushing destroyed 99.99% of the
Tylenol murder physical evidence, including fingerprints and
cyanide, all gone forever.
That nuclear option was no accident.
Sloppy J&J workers? Fatigue? Coffee? An industrial
accident? Was this inside job, perhaps in the Fort Washington,
PA factory, where the 1982 Tylenol had been packed in bulk
barrels before being repackaged in the Chicago area, a common
practice among drug companies back in 1982.
NOT AN IMAGINARY MAD-MAN!
NOT A FANTASY BOOGEYMAN!
NOT A PLAUSIBLE SCAPEGOAT!
JUST SLOPPY, EXHAUSTED J&J LINE WORKERS, FATIQUE AND
INDUSTRIAL ACCIDENTS HAPPEN AND PEOPLE SOMETIMES DIE.
After 3 decades, and tons of urban myth, history has come
The FDA closed that same Fort Washington Tylenol plant in
April 2010 for being nasty and contaminated. This cleanup
required a bit more than Windex and Spic & Span. Google it
Today, after 3 years, Fort Washington remains closed. After
3 years? Must have been ugly contaminated! Find any lethal
Oh, you are not talking! I see.
FINALLY, THE SMOKING GUN WHICH KILLED LYNN REINER WAS
HER GRIEVING DAUGHTER, MICHELLE ROSEN, POSES THE QUESTION
Michelle asks, "HOW DID A MADMAN GET INSIDE THE LOCKED, CENTRAL DuPAGE HOSPITAL PHARMACY IN WINFIELD WITH ALL THAT
EXTRA STRENGTH TYLENOL FULL OF CYANIDE WHICH KILLED MY MOM,
MARY 'LYNN' REINER, ON THE FLOOR IN FRONT OF ME, AS I WATCHED
HER DIE, WHEN I WAS ONLY 7 YEARS OLD?"
"MY MOM HAD JUST HAD A BABY IN THAT HOSPITAL," SHE
"AS WAS CUSTOMARY, THE HOSPITAL GAVE MY MOM EXTRA STRENGTH
TYLENOL AS A GOING AWAY PRESENT," MICHELLE SOBBED. "I HAD TO
GROW UP WITHOUT A MOTHER."
AT THAT POINT, AUTHORITIES' MADMAN THEORY FELL FLAT ON ITS
FACE. OFFICIALS WERE CAUGHT LYING.
NO MADMAN COULD HAVE RESTOCKED THE HOSPITAL'S SUPPLY OF
TYLENOL. BUT J&J COULD HAVE, AS PART OF ITS MARKETING,"FREE
TYLENOL FOR NEW MOTHERS." INTO THAT HOSPITAL CAME THE CYANIDE
INSIDE J&J'S OWN FRESHLY MINTED TYLENOL SINGLE-DOSE
PACKETS, AND MARY REINER DIED.
IN 1982, MOTHERS DELIVERED LOTS OF BABIES IN LOTS OF
HOSPITALS. MANY OF THEM STILL REMEMBER GETTING FREE TYLENOL
SAMPLES WHEN THEY WENT HOME.
Scott Bartz's exposé, The Tylenol Mafia, is fascinating and it
New revelations and information not previously disclosed reveal
a very different view of the 1982 Tylenol cyanide mass murders
which should have been solved in October 1982.
Dramatic in its warnings, The Tylenol Mafia rips away the
revulsive façade that J&J CEO James Burke labeled “A
demonstration without parallel of government and business
working with the news media to help protect the
Order it and read it.
--By: James Wm. Lewis