Ashley Randele’s father, Thomas, revealed that his real name was Ted Conrad. In 1969, Ted Conrad stole $219,000 from a bank in Cleveland where he was working as a teller.
Ashley Randele’s father, Thomas, was dying of lung cancer at the age of 71 when out of the blue, he admitted he once lived under a different name.
“Mom, Dad, and I were in the living room watching 'NCIS' and he just sort of out of the blue calmly said, ‘Well ladies, just in case something comes up after I pass, I just need to let you know that I changed my name when I moved here. Nobody can know. The authorities might still be looking for me,’” Ashley tells Inside Edition.
Ashley demanded to know his real name.
“He really quietly said, ‘If I tell you, you have to promise you won’t look into this,'” Ashley says.
He said it was Ted Conrad.
In 1969, Ted Conrad stole $219,000 from a bank in Cleveland where he was working as a teller. On the Friday before he turned 20, he filled up a bag with cash and walked away, never to be seen again. In today’s dollars, his take would be almost two million dollars.
With his new wealth, Conrad started a new life. He bought a penthouse apartment in Boston, played golf, and became a car salesman. Ashley says by the time her father married her mother, the money was gone.
All during this time, he was being sought after. “America’s Most Wanted” and “Unsolved Mysteries” both featured the story.
A father-and-son team of U.S. Marshalls out of Cleveland made it their mission to capture him.
“We followed leads all over the country and sometimes even the world,” U.S. Marshall Pete Elliot says. Elliot says he does not believe he ever came close to finding the robber’s identity.
Now the daughter is telling the story on a podcast, “Smokescreen: My Fugitive Dad.”
Ashley says it took time for her to forgive her father. “Because we were so close, I just assumed that since I had no secrets from him. He wouldn’t have any from me.”
Ashley’s father died two months after he revealed his secret. Ashley and her mother did not reveal his true identity until after he passed away.