Tribune Wire Services
October 29, 1999 CLEARWATER, Fla. -- A critic of the Church of Scientology said he is financing a new foundation named after Lisa McPherson, a Scientologist who died in 1995 while in the care of the church. Robert Minton said he would incorporate the Lisa McPherson Educational Foundation. McPherson, 36, suffered a severe mental breakdown for 17 days before she died of a blood clot in her left lung. Her death prompted a wrongful death lawsuit, filed in Tampa, and criminal charges against the church in Pinellas County. Minton's foundation will reach out to disaffected members of the church and educate the public about what he says are the harmful effects of Scientology. The new foundation would provide "exit counseling" for people wanting to leave Scientology, said Minton. In response, Scientologists registered two corporations bearing McPherson's name.