Desert Rose and the Story of Stray Currents
By Daniel Ross
When Kathy Seacrist looks back over the past eight or so years, 2007 marked the beginning of a long nightmare. It was the year that her son, John McDonald, 37 at the time, started suffering from seizures.
“John was so healthy. Ate healthy. Everything. He was really buff. All my girlfriends fancied him,” she said. McDonald, his daughter Malia, and Seacrist all lived together at her home in Desert Rose, a subsidized housing community in Palm Desert, California.
In 2009, Seacrist’s own health began to deteriorate rapidly. “It started with terrible sinus infections and got progressively worse. I had slurred speech, my hands couldn’t stop shaking,” she said. By 2010, Seacrist, naturally slight, almost birdlike, someone always proud of staying trim and fit, thought that she was on the brink of death. “I was down to 82 pounds. For a while, doctors thought that I had MS. I told my mom, ‘If it’s my time to go, it’s my time to go.’ “