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After 50 years an abusive mother is charged with the death of her child

In 2008, Jim Klokow Jr., a 56 year old man, came forward against his mother, Ruby Klokow, for the abuses he and his siblings suffered as children—including the death of his baby sister. Klokow revealed how his mother regularly beat and choked him and blamed him for his sister’s death. As a result, in 2011 the Milwaukee woman was charged with second-degree murder of  her daughter, Jeaneen, who was 6 months old at the time of her death. After several delays and plea agreement attempts the case was scheduled to go to trial when the 76 year-old Ruby Klokow finally chose to accept a plea agreement.

Ruby Klokow, 76, to take plea deal in 1957 slaying of infant daughter, prosecutor says, on HuffingtonPost.com.

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9 Comments on "After 50 years an abusive mother is charged with the death of her child"

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  1. Truthspeak says:

    Donna, thank you for posting this horrific article. I hope to gawd that Jim sought counseling therapy during his life to process what his mother did to him and his sister.

    There was a VERY chilling remark that Ruby’s sister was quoted as saying along the lines that she was compelled to forgive her sister for murdering an innocent infant because, if she didn’t, SHE wouldn’t be forgiven. THIS is why Ruby skated through her life without facing any consequences for murdering her daughter – FAULTY BELIEFS.

    I can understand why Jim never came forward until now, 100%. I really can. But, Ruby’s sister witnessed this woman’s blatant abuse, first-hand, on many occasions and chose to ride the fence and enable. SHAME ON HER.

    God, oh, god……again, thank you for posting this article. It opens the door to a number of discussions from forgiveness to fence-sitting, and everything in between.

    Brightest blessings



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  2. Ox Drover says:

    Truthy, I agree with you about this, except I see the sister’s “excuse” of forgiveness as a LIE…it wasn’t that she had to “forgive” (READ: Pretend it didn’t happen) it is that NOW THAT SHE’S BEEN CAUGHT KEEPING HER MOUTH SHUT WHEN SHE KNEW ABOUT THIS ABUSE AND MURDER, she has to come up with some EXCUSE of why she didn’t STOP the ABUSE and report the murder.

    I think lots of folks use “forgiveness” as an EXCUSE of why they don’t DO something about bad behavior…It’s also possible that they believe “forgiveness” means PRETEND IT DIDN’T HAPPEN, but I think it also is AFTER THE FACT used to to justify why they didn’t act as they should have.

    Last night Son D and I were talking about the Pope resigning, and we were discussing WHY the Pope was involved in the pedophile priest cover up…and also talking about the Boy Scouts hushing up pedophile abuse in the 1960s etc. and we decided that rather than “judging” these people on the “yardstick” of TODAY we need to realize that they were behaving as their culture dictated AT THE TIME that was how things were handled. Sweep it under the rug, slap their hands and pretend it isn’t going to happen again. But TODAY it is different.

    D and I decided that rather than condemn an 85 year old man for what happened 50 years ago, which was in tune with the culture at the TIME, we rather admire the old man for “falling on his sword” NOW in order to clean up the corruption around him. Apparently when the Pope changes everyone loses their jobs and they start clean with a new slate. (I’m not Catholic so I am just coming up with this information and opinion from what I am reading)

    So maybe I am being too harsh on this woman but at BEST she iis I think a toxic enabler. My lovely little grandmother kept her mouth shut for 7 years when she knew my Uncle Monsterr was trying t KILL her baby daughter–wanna know WHY? Her “reason?” Get ready, here iit comes.

    If her husband had known her son was strangling his sister until she passed out he would have spanked the boy and HE MIGHT HAVE RUN AWAY FROM HOME. So she kept the boy’s secret and allowed her daughter to be abused….and the daughter grew up to be a TOXIC ENABLER.



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  3. blossom4th says:

    I really hope Jim seeks counseling if he has never done so before,because he’s been through so much trauma that he’ll never be able to process it on his own!My heart aches for him and his siblings!

    People who hide what they are and what they’ve done,are not deserving of forgiveness UNLESS they TRULY REPENT of their actions…..waiting to admit to the murder after 55 yrs is not showing remorse!Kudos to Jim for going NC with his mother!



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  4. Stargazer says:

    What a tragic story with many casualties. I think the responsibility for this crime falls squarely on the perpetrator and only on the perpetrator. I would never try to put myself in the survivors’ shoes and second guess their choices in life. They are all trying to make sense of what happened to them – I don’t consider them as enablers. It probably took a great deal of courage for that one to come forward and perhaps many years of therapy.

    Many of us had parents whose crimes involved child abuse but because no one died from it, none of us prosecuted. I don’t think that makes us enablers, even though we witnessed these crimes against ourselves and our siblings.

    Also, I would not judge that woman for forgiving her sister. I finally forgave my mother about 5 years ago, and it has released me from so much suffering. Forgiveness is not for the perpetrator and has nothing to do with whether the perpetrator “deserves” it or not. It is not “condoning” the crime or saying it is okay. It is simply releasing the grievance the sufferer is carrying around inside of them. The resentment only causes the suffering to the person carrying it. It doesn’t do any harm to the perpetrator.

    It saddens me to read all the venom directed at the surviving children for not coming forward sooner or for having forgiveness.



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    • jfmur1 says:

      Stargazer, you are so wise. We never know what someone is going through and when I read this article I thought that I’d never be able to appreciate the pressures the children and family faced since it took place in the 50’s! I struggle with long term forgiveness but I heard it explained this way which has really helped my perspective ” forgiveness is a gift that the victim deserves to give themselves so they are not tied to the perpetrator forever. The victim deserves to be free of the abuser and by forgiving them it doesn’t condone,excuse or erase what they did. It is purely for the victim so they don’t continue to suffer” the point is also made that you seek whatever help you need to get you there. I really love this. It was the 1st time I think I really understood that if I hung on to the hatred I felt for my sociopathic sister and the family that enable her, she would have a free summer house set up in my head forever and I deserved better. This take on forgiveness has changed my life and my ability to move on (not every day) but for the most part. I felt so sad for the children and sister in this story that they didn’t have the back up, resources such this site and a global community of support (or any support for that matter), and instead the pressure-cooker conformity of the 50’s, very different attitudes to children leaving them with no voice and no one to believe them. My understanding is that the bulk of social research into sociopaths and the currently held theories are since the 60’s so there wouldn’t have been much/ any general knowledge about such conditions in families in the 50’s…… Presumably the traditional idea of ‘keeping it all in the family’ was probably in play as well, giving the family member victims nowhere to turn.

      What is the golden sliver of hope amidst the horror of what the children endured is the attitude of the son who reported his mother. After everything he’s endured , he can still want to raise money in his sister’s name to prevent future abuse to other vulnerable children and he wants to write a book.- he is an inspiration. Living evidence of how the human spirit can prevail, regardless…… He is a special person, I hope the rest of his life gives him everything he really deserves and more :))



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  5. Matt says:

    I found the article telling since I was born in 1957 which would make me and the murdered daughter the same age. My parents were both extremely abusive, both physically and emotionally. My father tried to kill me by drowning me when I was 8 years old. While it is great to see that justice has been served after all this time, this article also made me sad when I read this article is how, when Jim and his his brother ran away to escape the madness of this lunatic, THEY were perceived as the problem and sent to foster homes where the abuse continued.

    This article made me think back to a conversation I had a few years ago with a very dear friend, who was the mother of another friend. My dear friend, who I think knew she was dying at the time of this conversation, said to me “I will never forgive myself for not calling the police on what your parents were doing to you.” I remember I must have looked surprised because she said “For God’s sake, Matt. Nobody had central airconditioning back then. The windows were open. The whole neighborhood knew they were beating the living daylights out of you and your siblings.” I thought for a long moment on how my parents, who were so big on “keeping up appearances” would be shocked to hear that everybody knew what was going on.

    But, then something else occured to me which I shared with my friend. I told her “It means a lot to me to have you validate what I went through, since my parents always told me that nobody would believe me. But, if you had called the cops, it wouldn’t have made any difference. That was the 60s and 70s, and if you had called the cops, they wouldn’t/couldn’t do anything since it involved a ‘family matter’. Also, my parents had enough clout that no cop who wanted to keep his job would want to touch that situation with a 20 foot pole. So, not only would the cops have done nothing, they probably would have hauled me off to juvie TO PROTECT MY PARENTS.”

    The sad irony is, whenever my parents used to threaten me with juvie, I used to beg not to be sent there. In retrospect it might have been a blessing in disguise.

    I hope, for Jim and his siblings, that they send this old psycho away for the rest of her natural life. He and his siblings have earned the right to some peace of mind by not having this monster, who now just looks to the world like some harmless old lady, roam the face of this earth.



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  6. Ox Drover says:

    Matt, I knew you had a “bad” childhood but not to that extent. You are right though there would have been nothiing done back then. I read about the information released from the boy scouts from the 60s and on and how they “covered up” the abuse by one scout master, and called his wife and they sent him to a psych uniit for 2-3 days thenn home and he started abusing both oof his kids, one girl and one boy. When the papers werre released without the names redacted the 2 now 50year old “children” were validated but also realized their mother knew and did nothing.

    I used to be “mad at” the Pope for being part of the cover up in the Catholic church, but you know I realize NOW that that was HOW IT WAS BACK THEN and he did what everyone did, so I have forgiven hiim and the others because it was part of the culture then.,…NOW, HOWEVER, things are or should be different. I actually admire the Pope now for “falling on his sword” to cleanse the corruption going on in the church NOW. It was a brave thing for him to do.

    So, actually, you are totally right about what would have happened, and I am glad though that your friend validated you. It helps to know that someone DID CARE even if they were powerless too help.



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  7. strongawoman says:

    Matt,

    my inner child hugs your inner child. She also has a nice, big strong, virtual fist if you would like to borrow it.
    I’m in awe of the fact you survived and can help others. Good on you



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  8. Divorced from Gaslighter says:

    If you watch old movies from the 50s, the ones that address psychiatry in a sympathetic way are filled with dramatic breakthroughs for people with severe mental problems. If the patient could just remember the childhood trauma that started the problem, then they would be free from the trauma’s effects, etc. No doubt the husband in this case told the wife that it was just a crazy thing that he did once, and it would NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN.

    My ex-husband was a pedophile, with an extensive collection of kiddie porn. His parents were upper middle class and the family was very stable. His sister is a very kind and mature person, while his brother was an underachiever. But there did not appear to be any reason why he turned out how he turned out. For years after the divorce I looked in vain for any articles explaining how a sexual fixation on children got started, and never really found any explanation.

    I’m not Catholic, but I think that the problem up until the early 80s was that the Catholic church saw child molesting as a sin primarily because the priest involved was breaking his vow of celibacy. They would send the priest to a monastery for counseling of one sort or another, get some assurance from the priest that it wasn’t going to happen again, and then the priest was officially transferred to a new jurisdiction.

    There was a program on one child-molesting priest, maybe it is on Netflix, but the priest admitted the abuse and he agreed to answer questions on camera, and the interesting thing to me was that this guy was ever allowed into a seminary. He was so obviously too self-absorbed to be useful in one of the “helping professions.”

    With the Boy Scouts, they probably thought that the problem was solved when they caught the guy and threw him out of the Scouts.

    I think that it is only from the 80s at the earliest, and more like the 90s that people FINALLY grasped the fact that some mental disorders are untreatable, and sexual orientation is more or less fixed for most people at age 18 at the latest, and so somebody molesting children at the age of 25 simply needs to be behind bars.

    My opinion now is that pedophilia is an offshoot of sociopathy. The child is young and has a perfect body, and below the age of 8 or 10, they don’t reason well, and they do what they are told, so the sociopath fantasizes that he has found his soulmate — the child bride who never ever questions his lies, excuses and broken promises.



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