Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Robert Spangler: Black Widower

Desperately Seeking

In 1998, Spangler suddenly quit his job at the radio station, sold everything (he had inherited Donna's half of their Durango home) and moved to Pennsylvania to pursue a woman he had met over the internet.

That particular relationship didn't pan out, but he was on the move, on the hunt, and he relentlessly pursued women, desperate to be married again. His favorite date was a hike in the Grand Canyon, but by now, he was being watched by the police. They were afraid there would be another Grand Canyon "accident."

The Grand Canyon, hikers in the foreground
The Grand Canyon, hikers in the foreground

Bob eventually moved to Grand Junction, Colorado, to pursue a woman whose interest in him began to wane. He continued to encourage her while dating others. He didn't have time to waste. By the time he met Judy Hilty at a breakfast for singles, he was working as Vice President of Applecrest Irrigation company and dabbling in community theater.

He and Judy were instantly attracted to each other, and all other women fell into the background.

Then he had a little trouble with his eyesight. Then he couldn't remember his lines in play rehearsals, and had some trouble concentrating. He went to the doctor on August 12, 2000, and got the bad news. Inoperable lung cancer which had spread to his brain. Spangler was 67.

On September first, he and Judy married.

The cops moved closer. They were afraid Judy was about to have an accident.


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