Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

John Wayne Gacy Jr.

And New Love

On June 1, 1972 Gacy married Carole Hoff, a newly divorced mother of two daughters. Gacy had romanced the woman who was in a state of emotional vulnerability and she immediately fell for him. She was attracted to Gacy's charm and generosity and she believed he would be a good provider for her and her children. She was aware of Gacy's prison experience, yet she trusted that he had changed his life around for the better.

Carole and her daughters quickly settled into their new home with Gacy. The couple maintained a close relationship with their neighbors and the Grexas were always invited over to Gacy's house for elaborate parties and barbecues. As flattered as they were to receive such invitations by their young neighbors, they were always bothered by a horrible stench that prevailed through the house. Lillie Grexa was sure a rat had died beneath the floorboards of Gacy's house and she urged him to solve his problem. However, Gacy blamed the horrible stench on the moisture build-up in the crawl space under his house. Yet, it wasn't a problem with moisture beneath the house. Gacy knew the real and more sinister cause for the stench and he kept the truth from everyone for years.

Although many friends, family members and neighbors complained about the strange smells coming from Gacy's house, it certainly didn't stop them from attending his theme parties. Gacy threw two memorable barbecue parties in which he invited all those close to him. On one occasion more than three hundred guests showed up to attend one of Gacy's parties. The two that were attended by the most people were a luau theme party and a Western theme party. Both were huge successes. Gacy thrived on the attention he received from people who had either been to or heard of the parties. He liked to feel important.


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