Anderson victim picketing Schlissel home
One of the victims of a University of Michigan sports doctor who allegedly sexually abused numerous students is picketing 24 hours a day in front of the home of the university president.
Jon Vaughn, who played football for UM until 1991, said he won’t leave until President Mark Schlissel and the UM Board of Regents talk with him and other victims of Dr. Robert Anderson.
Vaughn, who lives in Frisco, Texas, began picketing Friday in the rain and stayed through the night.
“This is just the beginning,” he said Saturday. “I’m going to stay at long as it takes.”
He said he has been preparing for the protest for a month and will be joined by victims of other highly publicized abuse cases, including sexual assaults at Eastern Michigan University and the Larry Nassar case at Michigan State University.
By Saturday afternoon, he had been accompanied by up to eight other victims and their supporters, including Circuit Judge Rosemarie Aquilina, who presided over one of Nassar’s cases.
As he spoke with a reporter, motorists driving by honked their horns in support.
Although Schlissel had just announced his plans to step down, Vaughn said it was important for him to be part of the conversation with victims. He said the school president had been less than transparent during the school’s handling of the Anderson’s allegations, which occurred before Schlissel arrived at UM.
Vaughn said he hoped the victims and school officials could have a real conversation that moves toward reconciliation.
“We want them to speak our names, stop with the anonymity, the faceless John Does,” he said.
A spokesperson for the school wasn’t immediately available for comment.
On Friday night, Vaughn said he could see Schlissel and his wife looking at him out their window, but there was no conversation between them. Ann Arbor and UM police stopped by to ask why he was there but said he was free to stay.
Vaughn said he has consulted with a trainer and nutritionist about his plan to picket indefinitely 24 hours a day. He said he’s fasting 16 hours a day with a liquid diet of protein drinks.
He said the support he has already received from victims of Anderson and other cases keeps his spirits high.
“It’s an amazing day, an amazing night,” he said. “I feel strong. I’m ready to keep charging ahead.”
Sitting on a lawn chair in a tent-like covering, he wore a T-shirt that read “Hail to the Victims.” He has several signs that refer to the Anderson and other cases.
He said he’s writing a book and working on several documentaries involving Anderson and other sports abuse cases.