More on a local legend victimized by thieves after his death - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

More on a mysterious Vt. man victimized by thieves after his death

Posted: Updated:
SHELBURNE, Vt. -

By all accounts Radkin was an enigma. A memorial website set up by his friends is testament to that.

"Radkin was a very interesting man, unlike any other that I have ever known," Betty Marcher said.

Marcher was a good friend. She describes Radkin as an outspoken poet, musician, vegetarian, tinkerer and ham radio buff, who liked to BE in the buff.

"He wasn't like anyone else that you would ever meet he had the most amazingly beautiful voice ..he was a very special man," she said.

He was born Richard Burgess in 1945 in Massachusetts. He graduated from Deerfield Academy. He moved to Vermont in the 1970s and changed his name to Radkin, short for Radio Kinetics. He worked for Mad River Glen Ski area and Shelburne Shipyard before getting a job as caretaker for the Jackson family property on Shelburne Point, living in small cabins he built.

"He lived for a long time on the point without electricity. I remember I used to go there and he would generate his own electricity. Very much a minimalist in the way he ate and in the way he lived," Marcher said.

In 2003, Radkin bought an old farm in Alburgh and moved in. The loin cloth-loving, left wing conspiracy theorist mostly kept to himself.

Radkin's neighbors in Alburgh have a different story to tell. Oh, he was a character all right, but not so endearing.

"You would see him bathing in the lake or hauling water from the lake, just really odd," John Flurey said.

Flurey lives across from the Radkin farm. And he confirmed that Radkin was often nude.

"He had odd friends, eccentric friends. He liked to go to the auction and the only time you would see him in clothes was at the auction or if he popped into the legion for one of their free things there," Flurey said.

Radkin was killed last year in a farm accident. A tractor he was working on fell on top of him, crushing him.

"Tony Fisher and I noticed the tractor up on the woodpile. He did a lot of weird stuff, so we didn't think much of it," Flurey said.

That was in January 2012. His body was not discovered until weeks later.

Radkin's farm has been vandalized several times, police suspect, over the past year. Four people were recently arrested for trying to sell gold and silver coins worth more than $200,000 taken from the farm. Only $5,000 worth of coins have been recovered. Antiques were taken, as well. So, what was this self-described minimalist doing with such treasure?

"Yes, there again the whole minimalist survival mentality, I think. I think that he was putting money into gold because it seemed like a safe place for it to be, although in retrospect, not so safe if people are going to steal it, you know. But I think that is what it was about," Marcher said.

Radkin's friends meanwhile are left with a lifetime of memories of a man they say, who is impossible to forget.

Police say all those coins were sold in Chittenden County. More arrests are expected.

Related Story:

4 arrested for stealing coins from vacant estate

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Hinesburg man in custody after alleged shooting

    Hinesburg man in custody after alleged shooting

    Thursday, April 24 2014 11:56 PM EDT2014-04-25 03:56:35 GMT
    Police say a 71-year-old man is in custody accused of shooting a female relative in the hand and chest around 8:30 Thursday evening.The incident happened on Richmond Road. The Hinesburg police chief says the man was arrested without incident. He and the victim are long time residents of Hinesburg. Detectives are still investigating what sparked the shooting. But the chief says neither the victim nor the shooter have had any interactions with police before this. The woman was taken to Fletche...More >>
    Police say a 71-year-old man is in custody accused of shooting a female relative in the hand and chest around 8:30 Thursday evening.The incident happened on Richmond Road. The Hinesburg police chief says the man was arrested without incident. He and the victim are long time residents of Hinesburg. Detectives are still investigating what sparked the shooting. But the chief says neither the victim nor the shooter have had any interactions with police before this. The woman was taken to Fletche...More >>
  • Springfield police search for armed robber

    Springfield police search for armed robber

    Friday, April 25 2014 12:00 AM EDT2014-04-25 04:00:49 GMT
    Springfield Police need your help to find an armed robber. They say yesterday a white man carrying a semi-automatic handgun held-up the Jenny Wren Café on Main Street. The suspect is described as 19-29 with a slight build and no taller than 5-foot-9.Police say he had a dark buzz cut, acne, and was wearing a red Ecko hooded sweatshirt.If you have any information on the robbery call Springfield Police.More >>
    Springfield Police need your help to find an armed robber. They say yesterday a white man carrying a semi-automatic handgun held-up the Jenny Wren Café on Main Street. The suspect is described as 19-29 with a slight build and no taller than 5-foot-9.Police say he had a dark buzz cut, acne, and was wearing a red Ecko hooded sweatshirt.If you have any information on the robbery call Springfield Police.More >>
  • Arlington man facing an animal cruelty

    Arlington man facing an animal cruelty

    Friday, April 25 2014 12:03 AM EDT2014-04-25 04:03:45 GMT
    An Arlington man is facing an animal cruelty charge after police say they found a dead dog on this property.It happened at 2760 VT Route 313. Troopers were at Rick Thompson's home investigating a burglary involving a wood burning stove when they discovered the dog. Thompson told police the dog died from kennel cough but a vet later determined the dog had been starved to death. The 47-year-old is due in court next month.More >>
    An Arlington man is facing an animal cruelty charge after police say they found a dead dog on this property.It happened at 2760 VT Route 313. Troopers were at Rick Thompson's home investigating a burglary involving a wood burning stove when they discovered the dog. Thompson told police the dog died from kennel cough but a vet later determined the dog had been starved to death. The 47-year-old is due in court next month.More >>
  • Senator Sanders pushes for better access to primary care

    Senator Sanders pushes for better access to primary care

    Friday, April 25 2014 12:06 AM EDT2014-04-25 04:06:48 GMT
    Senator Bernie Sanders is pushing for better access to primary care for patients in Vermont and across the country.More >>
    Senator Bernie Sanders is pushing for better access to primary care for patients in Vermont and across the country. More >>
  • Burlington School budget one step closer to re-vote

    Burlington School budget one step closer to re-vote

    Friday, April 25 2014 12:09 AM EDT2014-04-25 04:09:20 GMT
    A new Burlington School Budget is one step closer to a re-vote in the Community.The Burlington School board voted in favor of a 67.4 million dollar budget. Dozens of parents and voters turned out Thursday night for public testimony on their thoughts and concerns on the new more expensive budget. A recent audit uncovered a 2.5 million dollar deficit forcing the board to slash about 2.5 million dollars in programming and staff. This new budget is 600-thousand dollars MORE than what was voted do...More >>
    A new Burlington School Budget is one step closer to a re-vote in the Community.The Burlington School board voted in favor of a 67.4 million dollar budget. Dozens of parents and voters turned out Thursday night for public testimony on their thoughts and concerns on the new more expensive budget. A recent audit uncovered a 2.5 million dollar deficit forcing the board to slash about 2.5 million dollars in programming and staff. This new budget is 600-thousand dollars MORE than what was voted do...More >>
  • Robber hits the same bank twice?

    Robber hits the same bank twice?

    Thursday, April 24 2014 7:01 PM EDT2014-04-24 23:01:18 GMT
    A security guard and bank manager at the People's United in St. Albans held a would-be robber until police arrived. And investigators think he is the same man who robbed the bank Monday.More >>
    A security guard and bank manager at the People's United in St. Albans held a would-be robber until police arrived. And investigators think he is the same man who robbed the bank Monday.More >>
  • Man shot by Vt. cop faces charges

    Man shot by Vt. cop faces charges

    Thursday, April 24 2014 7:31 PM EDT2014-04-24 23:31:24 GMT
    A man shot by an officer inside the Bennington police station faces charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.More >>
    A man shot by an officer inside the Bennington police station faces charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.More >>
  • Man charged in Vt. teacher killing wants confession tossed

    Man charged in Vt. teacher killing wants confession tossed

    Thursday, April 24 2014 2:29 PM EDT2014-04-24 18:29:39 GMT
    A Vermont man charged with killing a popular St. Johnsbury teacher is asking a judge to exclude from his upcoming trial a detailed confession he gave to police investigators.More >>
    A Vermont man charged with killing a popular St. Johnsbury teacher is asking a judge to exclude from his upcoming trial a detailed confession he gave to police investigators.More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WCAX. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.