EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW: Balloon Boy Family Lived In Squalor, Owed Money To IRS

Oct. 22 2009, Published 12:32 p.m. ET

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In an exclusive video interview with, Richard and Mayumi Heene’s former employee, Vince LeGrow, gives some insight into the Heene’s personalities, how they lived in squalor, their financial woes and even their issues with the I.R.S.!

VIDEO: Balloon Family Fuels Up On Gas

“I’d say she’s very kind of subservient toward Richard.  Richard was fairly controlling,” LeGrow says of  his experience working with the Heene’s.  LeGrow recalls several times when Richard would blow up at Mayumi yelling, “Mayumi you’re stupid!”

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As reported earlier by, the Heene’s lived in the back room of their production studio, which LeGrow describes as, “kind of disgusting.  Almost everything was sticky.”  With no kitchen or bathroom, LeGrow says the Heene’s merely relied on a hot plate and showered at the local Y.M.C.A. for almost two years.

LeGrow describes the children as “rowdy” and says, “they would curse a lot” and “didn’t have much discipline.”

VIDEO: Balloon Boy Vomits While Parents Defend Family contacted Richard’s brother, Donald Heene, for comment but was informed that the brothers haven’t talked in over 10 years and Donald told us it was a “personal family matter”.  LeGrow confirmed the notion that Richard has no contact with his family when he said, “Richard did talk about his father, only to say that he just doesn’t talk to him at all and probably hasn’t talked to him in 20 years or more.”

After working for the Heene’s production company for about a year, LeGrew says he worked up to the point where Richard wasn’t able to pay him anymore so he bought the company from him.  “I believe he was in debt and probably had some issues with the I.R.S. also.”


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