A Child Called "It"


Pelzer was born in San Francisco, California, and was the second of five boys. He grew up in the city of Daly City, California.[3] He is the son of Stephen Joseph Pelzer (1923–1980), a San Francisco fireman, and Catherine Roerva Christen Pelzer (1929–1992). As a small child Pelzer faced abuse for several years which Pelzer wrote about in his books. He said that as a child, he was continually abused, mistreated, and beaten by his mother, who thought of it as a game. His teachers stepped in on March 5, 1973, wherein 12-year-old Pelzer was placed in foster care. At age 18 he joined the U.S. Air Force in 1979 and served in the Gulf War.[4][5] Pelzer married in the 1980s to his first wife, Patsy (a pseudonym), with whom he had a son. In 1996, he carried a torch in the 1996 Summer Olympics torch relay.[6] Pelzer and Patsy divorced and many years later he married his second wife, Marsha, who was his editor.[7]

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