MFM Minisode 216My Favorite Murder with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark
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- 1 Mar 2021
This week’s hometowns include grandpa stories and games with a serial killer.
See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Hello and welcome to my favorite murder, the Minnesota hit, the miniature, you know, this little thing.
Yeah, and we're actually recording it for the Fanclub video style. What's up? Fan cult. Fan cult with the visual play. What's it like the extra thing they give you? And would you say bonus aspect? It's a bonus aspect for sure. So I have a makeup on, which is a rarity these days.
Yeah, we really got ready. Although I was going to say just for the bonus, sorry, just for the fan club, I have not dyed my roots in a while. So I do have like a Paulie Walnuts kind of look that only the fan club gets to see where inside Skirvin studio type of thing. Yes.
You mean because James Lipton is here, the dead body of James Lipton? Only for the fan club. That's right.
Well, you're welcome. Questionmark. All right. Why don't you go first just to change it up next week. Right. I played Go Fish with a Murderer. Hey, Karen in Georgia, my friends have been asking me to email you my hometown murder story for some time. And after listening to your podcast, I thought, well, why not? I mean, seriously, it can't be that bad. Yeah, you consider it for a while, then just do it right.
So here's my story. Growing up, I lived in a small town near the top of Texas, about eight hundred people total when I was about six, my brother, five and I were staying the night with my grandparents. Sunday morning, a strange man walked into our church for church service. He told all of us that he was biking across America to raise money for charity. I forgot the exact charity this year, the year two thousand. My grandparents are just the nicest people you'll ever meet.
And being those people, they invite them to come to lunch with us at their home. He is just the friendliest person you'll ever meet. So friendly. In fact, that ends up staying later than planned. My papa invites him to also spend the night in our den and he can begin his biking journey after breakfast the next morning. Kindness of strangers, you know, you can just feel the the this is a bad idea building and it gets worse, but can you believe it?
He ends up playing cards with all of us. I remember him losing our game of go fish. He even picked up my little brother and spun around like an airplane. We didn't expect anything as he didn't give us any inclination of what was to come. Now let's set the scene of where this man stayed while all of us were sleeping. My grandparents den the den is where my papa kept his huge collection of knives and guns while they were all in cases, some of those cases remained unlocked because the children were over and maybe they were trying to just to kind of have an open vibe of like, what's ours is yours.
Yeah. You know, open concept living space. Now, this is open concept gun, a knife cabinet space gun cases. Yeah. The new HDTV craze that I remained on lock in the morning. Scott began his like journey. It was only after some time that we learned that the man who had stayed with us was Scott Eisenberger Eisenberger, and he had gone on a murder spree in Oklahoma less than a week after staying with us and less than a hundred miles away.
Oh, shit. Since I was young, I don't remember much of the process the police went through to catch him. My mom and grandma later told me it was one of the largest manhunts in Oklahoma history. In complete honesty, my brain blocks out most of this memory. I have a difficult time remembering his name and have to ask my mom for details. Any time a friend wants to hear the story, maybe it's due to being young when this happened, or maybe some repressed trauma.
So they didn't they didn't say their name. But so I looked it up. And this asshole, Scott Eisenberger, he brutally murdered a seventy six year old man named AJ Cantrell and his seven year old wife, Patsy. And then he had been in their house because he was spying on his ex-girlfriend who lived across the street. So I think they must have come home. He killed them brutally and then went across the street and killed his ex-girlfriend, sixteen year old son, and beat the grandmother.
Oh, my. And then he went on a thirty seven day manhunt and like he like, took some some nice family, like, drove him somewhere not knowing and they ended up pulling a gun on him and shooting him. So he got caught.
He, they did. They pulled pulled the gun on him. Yeah. Oh my God. Shot him.
He took off. And so finally the police caught up with him. Thirty seven day manhunt. How fucking terrifying.
It's horrifying. Also, it's horrifying that it's grandparent age people that he did that to. Exactly. I know.
I mean, it's shocking that a six year old. It's yeah. Brutal. So he's still in prison. I think he's on death row. Well, yeah, that's the end. That's it. You didn't even say her name. She's just like, I think I might be traumatized, but and then just got up and ran away.
She says it's just a bunch of Zs for three. But hey, look, if that is the case, so be it. And that's fine, because that is I mean, that's really scary.
It's scary. And to think about it's horrible. It's no wonder she didn't put a ton of details. And it's like the close call that you had is I mean, that's bone chilling. Yeah. I'm so happy that it turned out fine. I mean, your parents it was your grandparents that your grandparents generosity was not and the room full of guns and knives, that none of that even was a part of the story. I'm very grateful. I thought it was going to go differently.
Yeah, OK. This just as hometown story. I grew up in a pretty rural area where driving your four wheeler to the store was a common thing and kids rode tractors for fun. My great uncle gave me the creeps as a child. He was an alcoholic, not the first alcoholic I encountered, but definitely the one, the only one to make me nervous. I couldn't put my finger on it, but my six year old gut told me to stay away.
He would offer me a dollar if I would shake his hand, which I would politely decline over and over until I found the courage to slowly walk over, snatch the dollar and run like hell. Yes, when I was eight, he developed cancer, could no longer take care of his puppy and asked if I wanted her. I loved this dog more than anything, so I obviously said yes. She was my absolute best friend and lived to be twenty oh rewind fifteen years to when my dad was a teenager, my great uncle, his uncle showed up at my dad's house with his dog.
He was drunk and offered my dad his dog for the price of ten cents. Growing up in a rural area, the more dogs the merrier. So my dad ran, found a dime, gave it to his uncle and then gave the who, then gave the dog a pat on the head, said goodbye and left. The next morning the police called, asking for my dad, questioning him about his uncle and the dog. After selling my dad his dog, he went home, waited for his wife to come.
Home, and when she walked in the door, he shot her in the face, killing her and then went about his evening as if nothing happened. Oh my God. They lived in a trailer park. So a gunshot is easily heard. The police were called and he was arrested. After my dog past, my parents decided to tell me this history of abuse, alcoholism and depression my uncle had and the two few years he spent in jail for that murder, it made me so it made so much sense why six year old me got the creeps from this man, but still confuses me to this day why my family welcomed him back into their lives so lovingly.
SS DGM And if a murderer offers you their dog, you should probably take it, Marie.
It's just so it is. So I would question my parents that let this murderer, convicted murderer around children, you know, and I don't know if they were ever alone with him, but either way, it's like predesigned sound like a predator, you know.
It doesn't sound like they were alone, though. I mean, like but also that's that kind of thing of like family systems and what people are used to, if it already happened in their family or if that was a thing. I mean, you know, it's just kind of like the water level must have been at a thing where guns and abuse maybe.
I don't know. Well, I think like you and I don't have this problem but are in a lot of families, it's so interesting to me, like what is off limits to talk about and even acknowledge, just like there's no talk about periods, there's no talk about sex. There's no talk about your murderer, uncle. You know, like we don't talk about that. Yeah, you just. Well, yes, that very true. Like, it could have been the healthiest family in the world, but they were just like he's going to he's here.
We don't want him to be here. It's the so and so's birthday. So just let the kids do what they want and, you know, who knows? Because as a six year old, they don't know that maybe every guy at the party is on that uncle every time. I mean, who knows?
We can assume the worst. All right.
This just his hometown. But this is a grandpa and a fire story. So a two and one nice hometown story. I heard an episode where Georgia talked about someone lighting their kitchen on fire and decided I should send in the time my grandfather almost killed my sister and me when I was about eight years old. My sister and I, she was six, went to our grandparents house, is another grandparents house for a week. During the summer, my grandparents lived in Wichita Falls, Texas, another grandparent Texas story.
I didn't even love it. I picked these. I don't mind it. I bet you that it's the majority of our inbox now.
We've asked for it so many times, which is about four hours away from where my parents lived. One afternoon my nanna was at work, so it was my grandpa's job to make us some lunch. My grandpa decided to fry up some French fries on the stove and a cast iron pan full of oil.
He was an old truck driver who was never home.
So this was out of the ordinary. I guess while he was getting everything ready, he realized he didn't have any bread for sandwiches, so he left us home alone to run the store.
They're eight and six and there's a fryer of hot oil on the stove. This is this is going.
It's going. You've seen this PSA Bugs Bunny walks in and points to the stove and is like, stay away from this horrifying.
I was laying upside down on the side of the couch in the living room watching the only kids movie. They had the goofy movie. When I saw smoke covering the ceiling, I walked into the kitchen. I love the visual of her lying on the side of the couch upside down on the side of the couch, which is like something you can only do as a kid because the back pain now would be horrendous.
I when I saw smoke covering the ceiling, I walked to the kitchen and the entire kitchen stove and wall was engulfed in flames. Oh, you're done. Like, engulfed in flames is the scariest thing to walk into. You've done that.
It's the scariest three words in the English language. That's right.
I realized I needed to call nine one one, but I didn't know my grandparents address. So I panicked and called my parents who were four hours away. Oh, Jesus Christ.
By the time I finish scaring the shit out of my mother, my grandpa came running in through the back door that was located in the kitchen. He began screaming at us to go out the front door. My grandparents lived in an old house where the front door would constantly get stuck so no one would ever use it. So there my sister and I were trying with all of our tiny kids strength to open the front door that never opened. Oh, shit.
I don't remember how exactly we got out, but my grandpa was rushed to the hospital with burns all up his arms from grabbing the cast iron of oil that he left on the stove and throwing it outside. No, because you can't put it out with water, right?
Oil, no. So that makes it worse. Like you would have needed a bag of flour. But if we're using the phrase engulfed in. Flames, which we are, then I think that's when you get out of the house, right? The fire department has to do it. It's not worth saving if you're going to get you're just going to fuck it up. A grease fire get. Yeah. I mean, your dad taught you that. Should I should call Jim right now and just get the confirmation on what exactly the protocol is.
But I mean, grease fires, you have to throw flour, dirt. Baking soda is a baking soda. There's some things that you have to make sure it's not something that's going to react, but it has to like douse it entirely and water makes it worse. The thing, though, is a fire is on a wall to get out. You have to get out. It's not you throwing the grease out isn't going to put the fire out, you know.
Yeah, you're going to start one problem, which is what happened to the grandpa. He got grease on himself, burning hot grease.
I mean, yeah, OK. Luckily, the only the only the kitchen was completely torched and not the rest of the house. Oh, good. Apparently my grandpa had gone to two different gas stations looking for a loaf of bread to feed us because truck drivers love gas stations. I guess. Stay sexy and don't leave oil on the stove. Britney. Nicole, no. Yeah. Oh, my God.
And my third story is a grandpa story, too. What did I do with it? Do you miss your grandparents? Oh, is it one of those people?
It's a little we all need a little homey grandparent vibe. What was I going to say? Oh, I remember my friend who's Bradford, who's a very good cook and now works works out exactly right. Teaching me. I was like, just teach me some basics. Just make it so that I could make myself a casual dinner. I felt like it. So he was teaching me how to make some recipe he makes all the time. And he was like, so, you know, here's a pan and we're going to throw this butter in it and whatever.
And then and we were kind of standing there talking. And then I just walked away, went into something like Karanth, you can't walk away. And I was like, Wait, what? He's like, Yeah, you're doing this by yourself. You can't leave the area. And I was like, Really? But step one, I'm cooking. He's like, you have to cook.
You have to stand there and do it. And not like I mean, because that is me completely were just kind of get destructive like. Well did I write in my journal this morning.
Oh, I thought of something to put on my to do list. Let me do that. Thought I just looked so stressed out by the sound of sizzling. That's like one of the things that like like makes me stress. So yeah, I'm just like I hover want to cook. So the complete opposite thing where I can't walk away, you can't all be so stressed out and scared. You need to do much more boiling.
OK, but have you ever boiled water and then forgot about it and boiled it out and then your pots. I've done that for sure. We like entire eggs and then you leave for three hours.
There's so many. It's like if you were engaging the oven and this is, you know, we're pretending to say to other people, but this is true for myself. Yeah. Like if you're near the oven and using it, that's all you're doing for the four block out. Two hours. Yeah. And just be like, this is the only thing I'm allowed to set a timer for every ten minutes. So in case you walked away, I alarmed like, dude, what are you doing.
Oh what am I doing here. You're just wandering in the yard. Hey Siri, let's see how I feel after having listened to you guys for years. Seeing you live twice, huh? And wanting to share some sort of story with you, I finally decided to steal one for my mom because she had a far more interesting life than I imagine I ever will. So in honor of the late Joanne. Here we go, Joanne. Pour one out for Joanne and all Joannes.
My mom was a beautiful person inside and out. She was a tiny thing, but also someone you would well be advised to not fuck with being the young Knock-Out that she was in the toxic masculinity playground of the seventies. She had plenty of stories to share about men who are not on their best behavior. One of my favorites is when she was leaving the grocery store while largely pregnant with my brother. This would have been in nineteen seventy five when she was twenty seven years old, quite petite and all belly as she made her way to her bright yellow Mustang, a man whistle to get her attention turning around.
She saw him sitting in his truck with the door open, turned to face her and masturbating vigorously. She said she was certain that when he saw her from behind approaching that Mustang, he didn't expect the pregnant belly when she turned. But he was now fully committed to his disgusting endeavor. Oh my God. And being the ever bad said she was and used and used to creepy 70s dudes. She pointed at him and began to laugh hysterically. It certainly wasn't the reaction he was going for and overcome with what I can only assume was all consuming shame and embarrassment.
He slammed his truck door and took off. She loaded her groceries and carried on about her day, irritated but I'm sure consoled by the fact that she had at least managed to somewhat emasculate him when she told me this story. She's always said that shock is what someone like that is going for, and then if I ever found myself in a similar situation to not give it to them, laughing at them, she said, was my best option. Fortunately, I've never had to find out firsthand.
My mom has been gone for many years now after a battle with brain cancer. But I still love retelling some of her amazing stories, and I only wish I was half as fucking cool as she was. Maybe I'll write in again with the tale of how she kicked out a couple who had been staying in her apartment after they shot a hole in her TV, only to have the FBI come looking for them after his stay stays. And don't be afraid to show in public masturbators, Lindsay.
Lindsay, thank you for sharing a story about your. I love that. That's a that's a piece of advice you have to give people. You know, here's the thing. Don't be afraid. If someone's jerking off at you in the in the grocery store parking lot, it's your right to laugh at them. That's right.
Shame. Shame at them. Bring bring the shame belts. Right. OK, this is my last one's called treasure after my grandpa's death, and it just starts, Hey, hey, my grandpa Perry was born in 1920. He served in the Army during World War Two as a cook and then later in life helped build rockets at Rocketdyne in L.A.. Wow. He and my dad built a house in the 1960s on some land in Lancaster, California. The house was small, but it had five acres of desert around it.
It reminds me of the Perry Mason Show. Oh, yeah. Where he lived out there. He lived at that ramp. Yeah. He used some of the land to grow fruit trees, have a garden, a large barn slash garage and a dune buggy track in the back. Cool side note. He'd love to take anyone out for a ride in the dune buggy right up until the end. The rest of the property was just open land. My grandpa passed away just a month shy of his 90th birthday in March 2010.
My dad had hid from us that he had been sick, thinking it was nothing and not wanting to worry us. So it came as a huge shock to me and my four siblings when we were called. I will never forget that day standing in my second grade classroom waiting for the day to start. She was the teacher, not the second grader, by the way.
OK, after his death, my dad went to help clean out the barn and get rid of the things my grandma didn't want anymore so she could move to my parent's house in Washington. This is where it gets interesting. Since my grandpa grew up in the Depression, he didn't trust banks.
Oh, he actually didn't get a bank account until he married my grandma in nineteen eighty. My dad wanted to start with the barn since it was just full to the brim with things. A little while after starting, he grabbed a mason jar that looked like it had just that look like it just had baggies folded up inside. Curious to know what was in the bags. He opened the jar and found bags with tightly rolled bills inside. Oh, never throw anything away without inspecting it, no matter what.
Open every bag, shake out every book.
I once was in a state sale. You could tell it was like a really old old person. And I got one of those like Samsonite, like vintage Samsonite beauty traveling cases.
And it was full of all like aspirin bottles and bandages like old stuff. So I was excited to go through it. And in the very back was a twenty dollar bill like the sixties and then like a traveler's check worth like twenty bucks. But the thing from the sixties, it was really I put them right back in there and like put it away. Oh that's treasure. Yeah. Treasure.
So never fucking throw anything away. Be a hoarder. So tightly rolled bills inside. He walked in the house to my grandma and told her what he found and she was shocked. This happened day after day as he was extra carefully cleaning things out. I'm sure now ones, twos, fives, tens, twenties, fives and hundreds were found.
Jesus. The pile of money on the kitchen table was growing very rapidly when all was carefully searched through in between book pages and toolboxes, really anywhere and everywhere, organized and cleaned out. The total amount of money that he had hidden was just over nineteen thousand dollars. Oh my God.
Yeah. Oh my God. My gram. He had been sneaking out to squirreling it away every time you went out there, like my God, telling anyone to look carefully through shit.
But when he died. Yeah, just one person. You tell your wife, you call your wife someone you trust. Absolutely them.
It says, holy moly, I love the thought that he wanted my grandma to be taken care of and would stash away whatever extra cash she had on hand. He was the kindest, sweetest man. I would have done anything for my grandma. I wish my grandpa knew just how much I wanted to call him and tell him I was expecting our first finding out just a month after he passed. Any who. Thank you for taking the time to read my story.
Thanks for all you do. SDM K. That's awesome.
That's amazing. And thanks. But, you know, just it's always hard to lose parent or grandparent, but living to 90 is a ripe old age. I mean, that is a nice life. That's a great autoline, that's a great life. And it's always nice when a nice old person lives that old because it's always them, you know, the mean curmudgeonly ones that live to be 100.
You're like, well, I couldn't have my grandma lived to be a hundred. She was fucking nice Grandma Molly, you know.
Well, it's harder to be nice as you get older because all your pans and your arthritis is and you're sick of people and you don't understand how computers work and kids these days.
It's this long, like, you know, like a lot of us feel about ticktock. That's how the entire world feels to old people. Or you're just like, what is it? I don't how did you even make the OK, this is the last one. Right? OK, so many good ones this time. All right, I'll do this one starts. What the fuck is up, guys? So when I was roughly nine years old, a group of.
Around six kids, including my younger brother and myself, will just wander the city and look for trouble, right? At one point we even hid in my dad's van and threw balls of mud and wrapped in paper towels at moving cars in hopes they'd stop at our makeshift car wash. We had set up. Oh, my God. But that is whoever thought whatever child thought of that was a genius, a marketing genius. Create a problem and then create a solution for it and then create that solution and fill that niche in your neighborhood.
Oh, but wait, there's more. But after about three mud balls, it became more about throwing mud balls versus actually washing cars. One unlucky man had his window down, which led to a mud ball I had thrown, blasting him right in the face all over his white shirt. Let's just assume he was not pleased. He was not pleased. You're lucky you didn't get your ass beat, right? On one particular day, we were playing in the alley when I decided I needed more attention.
And then in parentheses, I'm obviously a middle child. So I contrived a plan. I brilliantly decided I would convince my friends that I was being kidnaped.
Oh, my God, the children are insane people. This is my favorite, though. This is this is that kind of thing like this is the way my mind works as a child because we were alone. We are left alone a lot or in groups. Yeah. And it would just be that thing of like this isn't, you know, like watching Spiderman and eating pretzels is not enough for me. I want more I need to be engaged with I'm a I'm a young, fertile mind and I need to pretend I'm being kidnaped.
I crave adventure and being kidnaped. OK, so I ran into one of the nearby breezeways when nobody was looking and began to yell for help.
Oh my God. It's all of the kids were around my age. It didn't take much convincing as they'd run over toward me. I'd make it seem as if I was being pulled away and yell for help.
Do you think what a little shit. What a fucking genius. I give them a glimpse of my face around the corner of a building with my hands grappling along the sides of the wall and then pretend to be ripped away. Oh, I love this person is the actor.
My plan was working. All eyes were on me. Finally, I had the genius idea to hide in an abandoned garage and wait for them to find me, but they didn't. After a while I noticed that I couldn't hear them anymore. So I walked around the block looking for them, but I couldn't find them anywhere. After about fifteen minutes of looking, I decided it'd be best to go home and wait, ready to laugh in their faces about how well I tricked them.
When I got home, I was greeted by all of my friends and my brother crying in my living room.
I mean, that's good acting. If only James Lipton was just going to say, let's get Inside the Actor's Studio.
This, OK, telling crying in the living room, telling my parents I had been kidnaped.
My parents were pacing the living room in a panic, just about to walk out the front door to look for me themselves when I walked in. Needless to say, their fear quickly switched to anger and I was not allowed to go back outside that day. I grew up in a dangerous city plagued with violent crimes. So as an adult, I can see how this could have been believable for even my parents. I can't imagine how terrifying it must have been for them in those moments that I was, quote unquote, missing for a split second.
They had to live with the reality that they might never see me again. To this day, I still shamefully laugh every time I think about it and pray my future children aren't as big of an asshole as I used to be. Stay sexy and just know that if you stage her own kidnaping, you won't be allowed back outside for the rest of the day. Sam from Redding, Pennsylvania. P.S. I too have an older sister who used to smash me up with a brush and would threaten to kill me if in my sleep, if I didn't stop playing with her toys.
I fully relate to Karen's battles with Laura about trying to wear her clothes as younger sisters got to stick together. Mm hmm. Amazing job, Sam. Sam from Redding. Sam, the thing I think about the most of that is that the parents are like, you have to stay home the rest of the day, but we need you to leave like you don't get grounded for a week because then you're stuck at home with us for a week and we just can't deal with that.
And the shit you come up with and the ways you need attention, you have to get out of here. You have to go out. It's for our own sanity. I mean, I just wish I'd been in that group of kids, like, remember when you were little and then stuff would happen, like things would happen that would change. It was just like you're playing, playing and then a a scary thing or a weird thing or whatever.
And you'd be like as a group of children saying we have to take oh my God. And that would actually have been really fucked up and scary. Yeah.
I remember doing a child slowly being pulled around a quarter of all four corners of a building just in a circle.
The kidnapers just going in a circle and circle over here.
Oh, my God, that's hilarious. Well, that was a great bat.
I mean, sentenced is to my favorite murder at Gitmo. We want to hear them. And any and all topics are welcome and wanted and will be will be given the attention a middle child deserves to write.
Finally, finally, you get the attention. Finally, you'll be you'll be the the rare. Cherished middle child or this podcast, I imagine Alice is a stay sexy and don't get murdered. Goodbye, Elvis.
Do you want a cookie? I.