On the tenth of May, 1994, nothing much was happening in the world of serial killers. Ted Bundy was rotting steadily into the ground, having been dead for some years. Richard Ramirez was twiddling his Satanic thumbs in San Quentin prison in California, waiting to die either in the gas chamber or from old age. (As it turned out, lymphona got him first.) In Wisconsin, Jeffrey Dahmer was a) listening to whale music, b) reading the Bible, or c) trying to ignore the invisible voices hissing “Seven months….”
And in a prison nearby, a fat, sadistic murderer was being wheeled to an execution chamber to meet his Maker.
John Wayne Gacy had been on death row for a long time, and prison living had not been kind to him. He was as fat as a walrus and just as oily, with greasy grey hair and a grating accent. His voice was high and growly. His jowls were unpleasant to look at. He perpetually smiled as though the whole world was a terrific joke that only he fully understood.
He had been convicted of killing thirty-three men and boys-mostly boys-and may have killed more. He had danced merrily upon the reputations of his victims, calling “greedy hustlers”, and had alternated between boasting of his kills and flatly denying his guilt, like a naughty child. But his Day of Reckoning had come.
It took Gacy eighteen minutes to die by lethal injection, during which his face went purple and his eyes bulged like a pug’s. It was still an easier death than he gave any of his victims.
We shall soon meet them, these “greedy hustlers”, who never got a chance to plead their case, whose murders were truly stomach-turning, some of whom are not even given a name.