The Handy Candy Man: Solving The 1960 Cold Case Of Alice L. Lee (Paperback)
The Handy Candy Man is a non-fiction, historical, biographical, crime novel about the life of a pedophile who molested young girls for decades before he murdered seven-year-old Alice Louise Lee. Many knew about his deeds but none spoke up.
Alice Lee went missing before noon, without a trace, from Swan's Bean Yard in Trent, Oregon on August 29th,1960. It was a shock to the small rural community and it spread throughout the countryside and then across the country. How could she disappear from the midst of a close knit community in broad daylight? The mystery struck fear into the hearts of the residents of Lane County and quickly changed the carefree, friendly culture into one of caution and suspicion. For three weeks they were left wondering what happened to Alice Lee. And for sixty years now they've been asking, "Who killed her?"
This fascinating narrative started as a simple quest to identify the killer and grew into a biography which reveals where he came from, and tries to give some insight into who he was. It clearly shows that individuals have a free will. Even the best of parents can raise a child who goes his own way and does not conform to family values or societal norms.
The quest for finding a killer after the case grows cold becomes exponentially more difficult. Especially in a case like this where the physical evidence was not properly stored, so there's no DNA evidence to examine. The murderer is long dead. How can the truth be found and brought to light? In this cold case, the resolution of the crime hinged on personal confessions, and on the truth buried in documents not available to the public until the Freedom of Information Act made them accessible.
The Handy Candy Man is solidly based on information found in newspaper articles and archived documents (family letters, Walla Walla Penitentiary records, Lane County Oregon police reports and court proceedings, Oregon State Hospital records, reports, medical tests and evaluations), genealogical research, historical research, eyewitness testimonies and, yes, confessions.
The Handy Candy Man is a story about the lives of real people in authentic locations. The names of the main characters are accurate. However, situations, thoughts, conversations and some fictional characters have been added to enrich and advance the story line. It stays as close to reality as possible, using fiction to fill in gaps consistent with the known facts.
The truth shared in this book is more than just telling the world what happened to Alice Louise Lee and the Handy Candy Man. It shares an astounding example of the danger of keeping secrets. Caretakers are challenged to make sure children are properly supervised at all times; even in public places considered safe. And it shines the light on the shameful and dastardly practices of a sociopath who is a pedophile..
It is also a spiritual book. Alice Lee loved Jesus. Her parents were devoted Christians and the parents of the killer were too. This book is filled with references to God and church because many of the real people in the story were Christians or at least attended church. It's about a time when the United States of America was clearly identified as a Christian nation and not ashamed to say so. A time before unpatriotic forces undermined our constitution and corrupted our public school system by banning God, the Ten Commandments and prayer.
The book discusses the age old question of who is to blame when bad things happen. If you haven't already given that question a lot of deep thought, it may broaden your perspective for the good and perhaps help you process some anger, bitterness, lack of forgiveness and grief. It shares the truth about some of the most important issues in life.
Plus it has all the ups and downs of an emotional adventure story, and solves a mystery. Do yourself a favor and get this book