Read an account of how Ron bravely researched and mapped for us a path through the Wall of Fire at great risk and with personal injury to himself.
His temper tantrums were to increase with age. After a motorcycle accident in Tenerife in the Canary Islands in which he broke his arm and several ribs, he was in a particularly vile temper:
"He didn't get out of that red chair for three months," said Doreen Smith (one of his young aides in the Commodore's Messenger Organization). "He'd sleep for about forty-five minutes at a time, then be awake for hours, screaming and shouting. It was impossible to get him comfortable. None of us got any sleep. I was better with a cushion. Someone else was better with a footstool, someone else with cotton padding, so every time he woke up we all had to be in there, fussing around him while he was screaming at us that we were all `stupid fucking shitheads' ... he was out of control...." (36)
According to another aide, after the accident at Tenerife, conditions aboard the ship took a turn for the worse:
His actions definitely became more bizarre after the motorcycle accident. You could hear him throughout the ship screaming, shouting, ranting and raving day after day. He was always claiming that the cooks were trying to poison him and he began to smell odors everywhere. His clothes had to be washed in pure water thirteen times, using thirteen different buckets of clean water to rinse a shirt so he wouldn't smell detergent on it. (37)