David Koresh became famous in 1993 when he and his followers were shot, killed, tear gassed and burned in Waco, Texas. David Koresh was born Vernon Wayne Howell in Houston, Texas on August 17, 1959. His mother was a 15 year old single mother. He never met his father and since his mother was so young he was raised by his grandparents. Unfortunately David Koresh described his childhood as lonely. He didn't have many friends. Other children called him "Vernie" and teased him constantly. To make school worse he was dyslexic and he dropped out of high school. The only things that he excelled at were music and Bible study.

At 20 David began to attend the Church of Seventh Day Adventists, where his mother belonged. The church officials felt he was a bad influence on younger children and had him expelled from the church. After traveling to Hollywood to be a rock star, he met up with the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas sometime in 1981. The Branch Davidians were/are a religious sect that was established in 1935 about 10-15 miles outside of Waco. At its largest, it had about 1,400 members.

David Koresh had many affairs with the prophetess Lois Roden. Together they traveled to Israel. Lois was in her late sixties so she died not long after the trip. After her death, David and Lois' son struggled for power and control of the Davidians. Still not in power David fled with some of his followers to another part of Texas. He and 7 others returned to Mount Carmel in 1987 however. This time they were armed. The had a shoot out with the Branch Davidians and shot and wounded Lois' son. He and the seven men were charged with attempted murder. The seven men were acquitted and Koresh's trial was deemed a mistrial.

In 1990 Koresh became the leader of the Branch Davidians and changed his name to David Koresh because one of the great kings of the Jews was named David and he wanted to be seen as one of the great kings of his group.

While leading the Branch Davidians Koresh had several wives. Many were under the age of 18. He also had many children with these young wives. It has been reported that Koresh told the young girls that they were "lucky" to finally to be old enough to sleep with him. He taught everyone an extreme interpretation to the Bible, and was said to display abusive behavior and harm children.

His Waco compound received the attention of the government in 1993 when the government heard that the Branch Davidians were a dangerous armed religious cult. After a 51 day siege, the FBI and other officials put a hole in the walls of the compound and released tear gas into the building. It is said that the adults in the compound had gas masks, but the children did not. The Davidians did not exit the building after the gas. Gun fire between the federal agents and the Davidians broke out and created havoc. The agents set fire to the compound, and killed most of the people inside. It is still disputed to who shot the first gun. One federal agent admitted that he shot the first gun to kill a dog on the outside, but later withdrew his statement after pressure from the government. David Koresh died April 19, 1993 along with most of the other Branch Davidians.

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