Detroit Free Press, May 24, 2008:
Rest in peace,
Flo Ballard? Not if London's Daily
Mail has its way.
Ballard was forced
out of the Supremes, and her story was retold by former
Free Press reporter Peter Benjaminson in his new book
The Lost Supreme: The Life of Dreamgirl Florence Ballard
(Lawrence Hill Books, $24.95).
The other day, the
Daily Mail wrote about the book and a major
exhibitiion at London's Victoria & Albert Museum,
"The Story of the Supremes from the Mary Wilson
Collection," with gowns once worn by Wilson,
Diana Ross and Ballard.
But the Daily
Mail story attempts to raise the premise that Ballard,
who died in 1976 at age 32 of what the Wayne County medical
examiner said was a coronary thrombosis, was murdered,
poisoned by some breakfast cereal found in her stomach during
the autopsy. And the newspaper suggests that exhuming
Ballard's remains might be advisable.
reaction: "I'm the only person who posesses the tapes on
which Flo Ballard told me her life story... When the
tapes are relased, I can guarantee that many people will be
surprised by what's on them, but nowhere on the tapes or
elsewhere did Flo ever hint that she feared that someone was
out to hurt her or kill her...
"I'm totally against
exhuming Florence Ballard's body on such flimsy
evidence. Poor Flo had so little peace during her
life. Let the lady rest in peace."