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Three Dollar Bill

Nothing says class like making a buck off a dead pornstar–especially if he’s your son

Ever since Montreal’s infamous sin-city prohibition days, when the city
didn’t outlaw alcohol and so drew gamblers, racketeers, sex trade
workers, entertainers and the thirsty from across North America, folks have
been saying, “Good boys and girls go to heaven, and bad boys and girls
go to Montreal.”

That ethos was only reinforced by Irving Berlin’s 1928 worldwide hit
“Hello Montreal!” and, more recently, it was embraced by two
American strippers and porn actors who were found dead at the bottom of a
Laval quarry last Sep 1.

Mark Kraynak, 23, of Uniontown, Pennsylvania, and Steve Wright, 20, of
Guerneville, California, hailed a cab from Vatican, a downtown Crescent St
nightclub, and headed for the Laval after-hours rave club Red Light, which is
located just 300 metres from the quarry.

After analyzing a surveillance tape, police theorize that on the fateful
night of Aug 22, Kraynak and Wright cheated their taxi driver of cab fare.
The tape shows the taxi chasing the two men, who fled on foot before climbing
a fence that surrounded the nearby quarry. When Kraynak and Wright jumped
over the fence, they fell 15 metres to their deaths. Police found their
fractured, severely decomposed bodies 10 days later. The taxi driver involved
remains unknown.

Both Kraynak—who served in the US Army’s 82nd Airborne division
in Iraq in 2003 and was decorated with a Purple Heart—and Wright were
models for the French Connection Francaise adult model agency that has
offices in Toronto, Atlanta and Santa Rosa, California. When the two men did
not return from their Montreal night out, their boss Stephen Sirard called
the police.

“They were the most reliable guys,” Sirard told Toronto’s
Xtra magazine shortly after their bodies were found. “Always prompt,
always polite, never late for a shoot. It was really unsettling that they
weren’t contacting me.”

Last summer Kraynak and Wright worked at the downtown Toronto gay strip joint
Remington’s—though neither were gay—and ended up in
Montreal for a weekend of play. Wright was reportedly a “party
boy” who enjoyed the life stripping afforded him. Sirard says Wright
loved his job and wanted to tattoo “Porn Star” on his shoulder,
while Kraynak wanted to return to university to study business
management.

Kraynak reportedly told his parents that he was in Canada to do construction
work. Sirard told Xtra, “He hated lying to his mom. He told me,
‘It’s time for me to retire.’ He was getting homesick. He
said if his mom found out what he was doing for a living it would destroy
her.”

But Kraynak’s mom Janice Kraynak of Millville, New Jersey, must have
known something: “[Kraynak’s] mother said he was hired by a
modeling agency and thought he was going to Canada for a photo shoot,”
the Pittsburg Post-Gazette reported. “When he was sent there to be a
stripper at a gay club, he refused.”

Well, not exactly. We now know that Mark Kraynak’s stage name at
Remington’s was Nick.

Kraynak’s mom also doesn’t believe her boy cheated the Montreal
cabbie. According to Xbiz.com, a news site that covers the adult
entertainment industry, “She pointed to a statement from a waitress at
the club [Vatican] who reported that the men had left her a $200 tip earlier
in the day as evidence that her son would not stiff a cab driver for
$40.”

Now Kraynak is outraged that on Mar 1 Sirard released a new porn video,
Lets Get it On, which both men shot in Toronto before they headed down the
401 to Montreal. Sirard clearly wants to capitalize on the notoriety of his
late models, though he promises all profits from the film will be given to
Wright’s mother, Cheryl Crocket.

“People, I think, will be a bit more curious to see what they look
like,” Sirard told the National Post. “The consumer will rent it
or purchase it to see what those guys look like, especially in
Canada.”

This story reminds me of that great 1981 Rolling Stone story on Jim Morrison
that boasted the memorable cover headline, “He’s hot, he’s
sexy, he’s dead.”

Then on Feb 13, Sirard and Wright’s mother filed suit against the Laval
quarry and the Montreal police for $250 000 each because, they say, the
fencing and French-only signage at the quarry was inadequate, and the police
were slow to investigate.

“Cheryl Crockett and Sirard are in business together,” Kraynak
told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “That’s a shame. She’s
using her son for her own benefit.”

Kraynak’s son, meanwhile, keeps popping up in other videos and photos
on the Internet, notably the work he did for Active Duty, a military-themed
gay porn site. That website was recently investigated by US Army authorities
at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where other 82nd Airborne members—like
Kraynak before them—have appeared on the site. On Feb 24 the military
announced that three paratroopers face court-martials on charges of sodomy,
pandering and engaging in sex acts for money, and four others have already
received nonjudicial punishments.

That won’t stop other gay-for-pay 82nd Airborne paratroopers from
stripping. And the scandal certainly hasn’t helped the reputation of
Mark Kraynak, who deserves to rest in peace.
I called Stephen Sirard of FCF but was told he’s on vacation until Apr
24.

Personally, I think jerking off to a dead porn star—whether he died of
AIDS or fell to his death—is morbid. It’s vicarious
necrophilia.

But even Mark Kraynak knew, when it comes to porn, money is the name of the
game. V

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