Is a Furlough a Vacation? At the Post-Dispatch it Seems to Be

Show of hands: Who out there read Bill McClellan's fantastic column yesterday on James Kornhardt -- the former Mehlville fireman convicted this week of killing a man in a 1992 murder-for-hire plot?

McClellan's piece had what no other media (including Daily RFT) offered in their coverage of Kornhardt. That's the fact that Kornhardt's brother, Michael Kornhardt, was also a "hoodlum" who in the early 1980s tried to kill a man with car bomb and was later murdered himself, supposedly because the notorious Leisure crime family feared Kornhardt would tell prosecutors who  had ordered the bombing.

Fascinating stuff and one more reason why this town needs veteran reporters like McClellan who can provide valuable back story to today's news. But there was another tidbit that I also found interesting in McClellan's column yesterday. It was the brief sentence in which McClellan mentions that he couldn't attend the Kornhardt trial last week because he was on furlough from the paper.

Hmm, I thought to myself, I could've sworn the Post-Dispatch ran a note in last week's paper saying that McClellan was on vacation -- not furlough.   

So, I rummaged through my recycling bin (who says bloggers don't do real gumshoe detective work!?) and found a couple of last week's papers. As I suspect, the papers state: "Bill McClellan is on vacation. His column will return Wednesday, June 16."

Double, hmm. Wonder what McClellan thinks of this? Let's ask.

"Is a furlough a vacation?" responds McClellan in an email. "I don't know. I did go on a vacation, but I would prefer to be precise and say, I went on vacation while on furlough. What should the paper have said? I don't know. I'm actually just happy that they think they have to let people know I'll be back."

C'mon, Bill! You know we all miss you when you're gone -- especially on Donnybrook when they replace you with Rush Limbaugh's chief stooge. Who is that guy? And where's a Kornhardt when you need one?

About The Author

Scroll to read more St. Louis Metro News articles (1)
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state.
Help us keep this coverage going with a one-time donation or an ongoing membership pledge.


Join Riverfront Times Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.