ANDY CARL

          writer/actor/nice guy

 

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Shortly after he was born Abram Plank’s parents were both killed in a tragic farm raising accident on the Amish settlement where he was born. His 14-year old aunt who was the twin sister of his mother took on the responsibility of raising the child but found it hard to find a husband as a single mother. After two years and reaching end of her prime the 16 year old Miriam was having a hard time coming to terms with the idea of becoming an old crone. Luck was on the side of the  teenaged spinster when Abram was discovered by child star agent M. Henry Valentin. At the age of two years old Plank made his acting debut as an uncredited extra in the Harrison Ford film Witness. Struck by the pure handsomeness and vibrant smile of the child and familiar with the hardship of the aging Miriam, Valentin offered to adopt the child.

After years of uncredited roles in sitcoms from Punky Brewster to Small Wonder Abram struggled to make it in Hollywood. In 1987 Valentin was approached to have his young son audition for the role of Brian on Steven Canell’s half-hour action dramedy SuperDad. When he was cast it was suggested by Canell that a less Amish name be given to the child, thus Andy Carl Valentin was introduced to the world. Though the show was well received by test screeners higher ups at the networks felt the age of sci-fi family shows were a thing of the past and canceled the show before it was able to air. (SuperDad found a home with pirated copies poping up on most video and file sharing websites. Reluctant to acknowlege their mistake the network usually have these videos removed within the first few hours leaving the show to carry on as simply an urban legend.) Disillusioned with the business M. Henry Valentin moved his family to Texas and left the business behind.

Since then the family has lived happily away from the lights of the Hollywood sign and those of fame became but a  memory. The summer after high school on vacation with a group of friends to Ohio, 18-year old Andy Carl met and fell in love with a girl named Hannah Yoder. Over the three months spent on the Lake Erie Islands, Hannah and Andy grew closer and quickly and unceremoniously married in early September. It was revealed to him that Hannah was actually completing her Rumspringa from the Amish settlement she was raised on and that she wished to return with Andy as her husband. Conflicted and confused from the effects of FPS (First Pussy Syndrome), Andy stayed behind and reconnected with his Amish roots. After the first week there it seemed as though Andy Carl was less Valentin and more Plank; his beard was growing in nicely and his new family greeted him with open arms. To celebrate his reconnection to what seemed his destiny the community held a barn raising for the new Plank homestead.

As Andy Carl pulled back on the rope to raise the pillar on which the barn would be supported the sun caught his eye and just as a child let out a cry. Frantically, his eyes quickly dashed in the direction of his young wife who let out the most beautiful of smiles. Beads of sweat rolled down his brow and into his eyes and the rope slid slightly as his hands became more saturated from his palms taking the same course of action as his forehead. Desperately Andy Carl  tried to strengthen his grip on the rope but it was no use as the rope slid quickly between his bare palms ripping into his flesh like an arrow threw water. The wood met the ground with a thunderous crack that shook the earth below him and moments later he fell back as the rope flew from his hands like a slippery fish. Through all of this Andy Carl’s eyes never left Hannah’s and over all the screaming and shouting the only thing he could hear was her voice screaming his name as the wooden beam meant to serve as a support split through her thighs, severing her legs. 

Only known image of Andy Carl and late wife Hannah.

Only known image of Andy Carl and late wife Hannah.

Andy Carl pulled himself up with his shredded palms and ran to his young bride, removing his suspenders he tied off her legs and picked her up. Panicked he begged for someone to call 911 but no one was able he burst through the front door of his parents house and looked for a phone having forgotten where he was. Back outside he placed her in the back a buggy and sat in the front grabbing the reins yet his damaged hands would not grip. Andy screamed for help but looked on as nobody came close and was told that modern medicine was not their way. Defeated he carried Hannah back into the house and waited for the elders to arrive. Sadly, Hannah would have survived had the settlement allowed her to be taken to a hospital. Instead the two lovers held hands while the bride slipped slowly and painfully away in a bathtub full of goats milk and lavender.

The following morning after burying his wife, Andy Carl zipped up his jeans, packed his bags and left Ohio. It would be nice if that was the end of the tragedy but it is not…

In 2002, while driving to the Monroeville Mall in Pennsylvania, Andy Carl and Chris stayed the night in Ohio. Andy told Chris the story of what had transpired two years prior and, like a good friend does, Chris convinced Andy Carl to visit the scene of his wife’s death and her grave to hopefully find closure. Early the next morning, alone, he did just that and did find closure. It is said he had a lovely conversation with his former in-laws and spent time at Hannah’s grave site. The family even bestowed upon him the sister of Hannah to raise as his very own. Graciously, Andy accepted. A weight was lifted and Chris noted how much higher in spirits Andy seemed.

Ultimately the end the duo was not able to make the trip to the historic mall since now they had a child in tow and due to the fact that a large fire at an Amish settlements had forced the majority of the highways to close.

However, Over the next 15 hours Andy Carl and Chris spoke of ideas and future plans. Andy had expressed interest in delving himself into work and raising his new daughter to help heal the pain of his former life. And it is from that very car ride that the earliest incarnations of Reservoir Geeks was formed.

The only things that remain now from Andy Carl’s former life are the scars on his hand, mysterious love of fire’s cleansing force and a beautiful child whom he loves with every bit of his soul. Her name is Natifa Anala Valentin.

 

Let it be noted most, if not all of this story is made up. All attempts to contact Andy Carl's former in-laws proved fruitless considering they are Amish and all burnt to death in a mysterious fire.