John Wayne Gacy
John Wayne Gacy was born on March 17th 1942 in Chicago, Illinois and became a notorious serial killer who claimed the lives of at least thirty people during the 1970s.
Before the murders, he was a well-liked community leader and active participant in political organizations and the Junior Chamber of Commerce (Jaycees). In fact, he even had his picture taken with First Lady Rosalynn Carter!
Early Life and Education
John Wayne Gacy was born in 1942 in Chicago, Illinois to a blue-collar family. His father was an alcoholic and an abrasive disciplinarian.
His mother took great care in protecting Gacy from his father’s temper tantrums. As a young boy, Gacy could not play with other kids due to an underlying heart condition that made playing with other kids impossible.
After school, he worked part-time in a grocery store and also delivered newspapers. Additionally, he participated in Boy Scout activities and became active within his community.
In the 1960s, he attended Northwest Business College in Illinois and then worked as a salesman. His skills earned him a job with Nunn Bush Shoe Company in downtown Chicago before relocating to Springfield, Illinois where he managed a men’s clothing outlet for them.
In the mid-1960s Gacy worked for his father-in-law in Waterloo, Iowa managing a chain of Kentucky Fried Chicken fast food restaurant franchises. He put in long hours and demonstrated an extensive knowledge of the restaurant industry.
He took an active role in his community by volunteering with the Jaycees. As such, he became a well-loved and esteemed member of its ranks.
However, in May 1968 rumors began spreading around town and among Jaycee members that Gacy was homosexual and had made inappropriate advances towards young boys.
His fortunes appeared to be changing in June 1970 when he was released from prison after serving 18 months. Afterward, he relocated back to Chicago and established himself as a building contractor.
Achievements and Honors
John Cacy was an astute businessman who excelled in his profession. He always put out the extra effort for his employees and customers, but what truly set him apart was his enthusiasm for what he did.
He was an enthusiastic social butterfly who sought to engage in his community. He organized elaborate street parties for friends and neighbors, dressed up as a clown and entertaining children at local hospitals.
Gacy was also a proud member of the Jaycees, Houston’s young professionals club. His accomplishments included receiving numerous ribbons and awards – including best-in-show for their logo design. However, Gacy’s most significant distinction was being named one of its founding directors.
Gacy was a genial individual with an outgoing nature who earned himself a reputation for generosity, friendliness and hardwork. A contractor by profession, he was also active in the Jaycees–a youth organization dedicated to community service–where he earned himself a lasting place in Gacy’s heart.
He was renowned for hosting lavish street parties for his neighbors. Often dressing up as his alter ego, Pogo the Clown, he would perform magic tricks at local hospitals and delight children with music and balloons.
His life seemed to be on track when he married Marlynn and relocated to Waterloo, Iowa in 1966. He managed several KFC restaurants while also being active with the Junior Chamber of Commerce.
John Wayne Gacy was convicted of 33 murders and sexually abusing young boys.
John was born in Chicago, Illinois on March 17, 1942 the son of John Stanley Gacy (1900-1969), an auto repair machinist, and Marion Elaine Robinson (nee Gorman). He was of Polish and Danish heritage.
He experienced a difficult childhood, as his father was an alcoholic who physically abused him.
Gacy later attended a business college and began working as a shoe salesman. In 1964, he wed Marlynn Myers; however, they divorced four years later in 1969.
By 2022, his net worth had grown to approximately $55 million. Much of this wealth had been earned through his painting career that he pursued while in prison. Throughout this period, he produced various artworks and sold them at auctions.