Thoughts about the Tragic Events

If you want to have your thoughts about the events included here, drop me a line. Please indicate whether you want your message to be posted here when you write.

Date: Thu, 27 Sep 2018 15:37:14 -0400
From: Laura Critzer

Hi Kathy,

While doing research on Lollie and Julies murder I stumbled upon your 
website and forum. I was wondering if you might post my email address for 
people to contact me for a podcast. I work for Watts Creative Studios & the 
podcast is called Route 29 Stalker and for many people here in central 
Virginia, all these murders are still unsettling for us. We have 4 episodes 
out currently on Alicia Showalter Reynolds and when those wrap up we will 
be gearing towards the Myers of Julie and your friend Lollie. We are 
looking for friends and family member that want to talk about who these 
women were. not what they are remembered by across the country. We at Watts 
Creative Studios want to bring awareness to the cases because we believe 
there are still leads out there, or parts of investigations that might not 
be done ( speculation but we want to put focus back on these crimes) Please 
feel free to listen to our podcast to know that we are legitimately trying 
to produce this. I'm sure you have been asked by numerous people to 
interview etc, but for us, being about an hour and a half away, we still 
live it. It's still talked about in that area. People remember Lollie and 



From: Jennifer Vancory jenvan at Date: Oct 1, 2006 6:02 PM Subject: Friends of Lollie & Julie Dear Kathy, I'm writing a book that will include a section regarding the murders of Lollie Winans and Julie Williams. During the course of researching, I've read many of the postings on your web site. I would appreciate being contacted by friends of Lollie and Julie who would like to share accounts of their friendship and times spent with either of them. Like many, I've always been struck by the savagery of the crime but even more so, by the genuine goodwill and affection that these two young women inspired in others. They both seemed to be remarkable people and I want to be able to provide accurate portrayals of both. Please forward or post my contact information. Any help that you could provide will be greatly appreciated. Thanks Jennifer VanCory
Date: Thu, 08 May 2003 13:46:29 -0400 From: James Close jamesclose at Subject: update from Washington Post May 6th, 2003- Shenandoah murders Counts dropped: Prosecutors agreed yesterday to drop two of four murder counts against a Maryland man accused of killing two women at a secluded campsite in Shenandoah National Park because of their sex and sexual orientation. Prosecutors said the decision will have no effect on the case against Darrell D. Rice, 35, of Columbia, who faces two charges of capital murder in the deaths of Julianne M. Williams and Laura S. "Lollie" Winans. The women were reported missing after they entered the park in May 1996. Their bodies were found a week later. Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas J. Bondurant Jr. said the government intends to argue that "part of Rice's intent and motivation" was to single out the women because of their gender and sexual orientation. Prosecutors have quoted Rice as saying he selected women to intimidate and assault because "they are more vulnerable than men" and that Winans and Williams "deserved to die because they were lesbian whores." Bondurant said the "hate crime enhancements" that had been included in the indictment were unnecessary because the case is now a death penalty case, and "you can't punish anybody more than death."
Date: Thu, 11 Apr 2002 10:48:24 -0700 (PDT) From: Kristin Fairbanks Luther Subject: Thank God Thank God for today's indictment. I was at Marlboro College in Vermont with Lollie, and although I never knew her well, she was a tremendous and wonderful life force in that tiny community. Her exuberant presence was strengthening to those around her. I wish her family and friends peace. Kristin Fairbanks Luther
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 15:56:22 -0500 From: Tim Vick Subject: Tragedy on the A.T. page Hi Kathy, I work in the Geology Department at Carleton College, so I knew Julie Williams while she was in college. I just wanted to let you know that we here in the Geo Dept still think about Julie often and check your web page periodically to see if there are any new developments in the case. I always sort of hope against hope that there has been some kind of resolution, although there is no way to resolve it in a way that would be really satisfying (undoing the violence against two wonderful people). Thanks for maintaining the web site, it is still important to a lot of people. Tim Vick *************************************** Timothy D. Vick Geology Department Carleton College Northfield, Minnesota 55057
Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2001 14:59:07 -0700 From: Becky Marsick Subject: questions about the case I was wondering if there is any new information about the investigation? In May of 2000 I was in Shenandoah National Park backpacking by myself (I have gone there many times), and stopped at the ranger station to ask if there had been any recent problems, and if there was anything I needed to be concerned about. The ranger mentioned the murders (I had read about them at the time), and I shared a story with her..... I told her that in 1993 I was backpacking with my sister in Shenandoah, and we hiked into Skyland on our fourth night (we were headed south). It was raining and we were sitting outside the lodge/restaurant making our dinner when a man who appeared to work at Skyland restaurant came out and started talking to us. He asked us general questions that we avoided answering such as which way we were headed on the trail, and how far we planned to go that night..... then he asked us how long we had been together. We replied that we were sisters, and he seemed surprised and quickly lost interest and went back inside. It bothered us for a number a reasons, mainly because he was creepy, and it was odd that he came out in the rain to talk to us. It was also unusual that he was asking about our relationship. As I told this all to the ranger last spring, she became very interested, and asked if I would mind sticking around for a few hours while they called the person who was in charge of the investigation, so he could come and get my statement. Of course I was happy to wait. As I waited for him to arrive, the ranger told me that they still had 2 rangers working full time on the case, and that they were very close to making an arrest. They also told me that "the danger was no longer present". I don't know if the information I provided was at all useful, but I thought I would post it here just in case it triggers anything for anybody. Although I never had the opportunity to meet Julie or Lollie, I have mourned their deaths in many ways; and feel I have gotten to know them through the beautiful comments that are provided on this site and in the countless articles I have read about this tragedy. Becky
From: Date: Mon, 9 Jul 2001 17:10:54 EDT Subject: Lollie Winans My daughter, who was a close friend of Lollie Winans in Vermont, just told me about this website. I am grateful that you are keeping this site going. I remember when I was in Vermont visiting my daughter, I filmed a very short video of Lollie and Taj (her dog). I would like to find out if her mom/dad would like a copy. Do you have contact with them? If so, please give my e mail address and my message about the video. I remember how honest and how caring Lollie was. My daughter was in school and Lollie was her roommate for a while. Lollie was behind a few dollars for the rent. She not only told my daughter how she would pay it off but made sure that we, the parents, knew that she would get the rent paid. Her upfront responsible manner was appreciated. Lollie had stayed with my daughter in the hospital's ER when my daughter was alone in Montpelier----- even when Lollie was sick herself. I told Lollie that she could consider the rent bill paid after what she had done for my daughter. I was amazed at her honesty and her kind and caring manner to be there for my daughter until I could fly to Vt.
Date: Tue, 03 Jul 2001 14:43:01 -0400 From: Lyrica L. Kerstein Subject: Remembering Lollie and Julie I have stopped into your site several times in the past year or so. It has served as a place of comfort, as I still grieve Lollie's death daily. I met Lollie in Woodbury, Vermont in 1991, and we shared many great moments together in the years that followed, riding up to the quarry in her VW van to go skinny dipping, meeting for Ben & Jerry's in Montpelier, dancing our butts off to Uproot and D'Moja, just plain laughing, drinking good beers, being roomates (for a little while), her dog Taj, my dog Lucy, Reggae fest, hiking up Hunger Mountain, an unforgetable road trip to Maine. She was a true sister to me, and a real friend. The happiest I ever heard her was over the phone when she told me about Julie. The last time I heard from her was a message on my answering machine, saying that she was going camping, and she would see me when she got back. We were going to be living in the same town again and it was gonna be a great summer. I miss my friendship with Lollie every day. I still see her in my dreams. I can still hear her voice and her laugh. This tragedy is something I have had a very hard time coming to terms with and I doubt I ever will. I still pray that we will find an answer about what happened. Thanks for keeping up this website. It is good to see that others still remember.
Date: Tue, 06 Mar 2001 21:30:31 -0500 From: Barbara J. Nordin Subject: Thoughts about the tragic events Dear Kathy, I'm the writer in Charlottesville, VA, who wrote at length about the murders in the summer of 1998. I have a new e-mail address (, which I'd like visitors to your site to be aware of in case they ever want to contact me. I intend to write about the case again at some point, and appreciate all the help I got before from your readers. Best wishes, Barbara Nordin
Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2000 20:23:51 -0800 From: Beth Lambert Hi Kathy, I just wanted to thank you for continuing to maintain this page. Julie was a good friend of mine in college and I still think of her often. Beth Lambert
Date: Mon, 10 Apr 2000 08:26:34 -0400 From: Bruce Carney carney Subject: Julie Williams & Lollie Winans My cousin and I were hiking this weekend and remembering a strange situation a few years ago. We were at a campsite sitting by the fire and saw a bearded fellow coming down the trail wearing nothing but a backpack, boots, and hat. He ducked behind a tree and put some shorts on, then talked to us for a little while. He said he didn't wear shorts because of the chafing. I can't remember his name, but he was definitely a different bird. He said he was hiking the whole trail and living on a handful of nuts each day. Anyway, one of the things he mentioned was that he crossed paths with a couple of women at a shelter along the trail and was disgusted that they weren't interested in men. I guess he felt rejected. This may have nothing at all to do with Julie Williams and Lollie Winans, but its frightening to think that similar mentalities are out there and could be very dangerous. We always hike and camp far away from roads so there can't be easy access, but there's still a fair amount of weirdos on the appalachian trial along with more normal folks. It's a pity that you can escape the cities and regular environments but you can't escape narrow-minded people.
Date: Mon, 22 Nov 1999 18:45:38 -0800 From: Atys Subject: Lollie and Julianne Don't remember ever seeing your site before, came across it by accident looking for something totally unrelated. You asked what others felt about this terrible incident...this is what I felt when it happened. Extreme Censorship Green, the trees of woodland made. Cloud of morning made them fade. Pink, the hue of eoan sky. Beauty the moments as they tick by. Nature arrayed in her richest dress painted gently by sorceress. Birds, a song of life did sing. Their love to wood did bring. Moss gathered as seat so soft, while skies of blue hung aloft. In peace and love my sisters did walk, ignoring call of the clock. Twine nuptial's garland with wreath of joy, their friendship, happiness did deploy. Utopia, to them did call of Vermont their heart enthrall. Killed for their thoughts were they, evil dawning on that day! Their love, not accepted by all. Some believe vetitive they had, in keeping with the latest fad! They kill those who don't agree. Oh woe is life, for you and me! For love, Lollie and Julianne did die. With them, we bid security good-by. Bracken the paths of forest floor, call in peace never more. For if my dreams displease. Brethren, the fanatic will seize.

Date: Wed, 10 Nov 1999 19:17:35 -0500
From: Josiah Carberry ????

(Note: I assume the author of this email is somehow associated with Brown U. and chose, for some reason, to use the above pseudonym from which to send the message. A reply to that address returned a bounced message. --KB)

I was just becoming friends with Julie up in Vt. not long before these
deaths occured. I called her to see if she could meet for lunch and
found it odd when she never returned my call. Then one night I got a
terrible unforgettable call with the news of her and Lollie's death.
These years later I still think of them often. I can no longer try to
understand what happened, only to try and be thankful for the gift of
friendship that I had recieved, if only for a short time.
Thank you for keeping this page going, it is helpful to see there are
many others who still think of Julie and Lollie. I can only hope that
someday the answers to many questions will come.

Date: Tue, 05 Oct 1999 13:11:43 -0400 From: "James E. Close" Subject: POST ON "THOUGHTS ABOUT THE TRAGIC EVENTS" Has it occurred to anyone besides me that Cary Stayner, the alleged murderer of three women in Yosemite earlier this year, should be a prime suspect in these murders? Where was he in May, 1996? NOTE: Yes, I think the possibility occurred to many people. I believe it was mentioned in a news story that one of the DC TV stations did. Police out in CA are certainly trying to put together an accurate calkendar of his whereabouts no doubt going back as far as possible. I would think it's quite possible they could solve other cases out in California, but suspect it's highly unlikely that he was back east, at least from what I have read about him. --Kathy
Date: Sat, 11 Sep 1999 10:32:37 -0700 From: Sarah Jetton Subject: Happy Birthday Julie Hi Kathy, I lived with Julie in Big Bend National Park in the spring of 1996. We made a connection from the very first day we met, and shared many great times in those few months. One of the things i remember vividly about her was our tradition of dancing in the middle of the Texas desert to Galilao by the Indigo Girls. We both loved that song and loved to dance. When we both went our separate ways from Big Bend, she called me up and shared how she had been driving out of the park blasting that song in memory of our good times together. Halfway out of the park she realized that the back window of her car was open and all her tapes and cds were spread all over the road. She said she just had to laugh at all the big RVs that probably drove over her precious music collection. I still smile when i think of her laughing/crying in the desert over her open window. Julie also is the only person to ever have written in a journal of mine, and i would love to share some of her poetry. I think of her often, and was wanting to see if anything was on the case recently. Thank you for keeping up this page. I also want to wish Julie a happy birthday up in the beautiful place she and lollie are in. I still have a connection with her, since i didn't even remember that today is her birthday. I miss her and will never forget her. My heart is forever saddend by the loss of Julie and Lollie, and i plan to keep her passion for geology alive in my teachings to elementary students. Please write me with any information you might have, or a place I could send her poems to her parents. I think it might be a nice birthday present for them. Sarah Jetton
Date: Sat, 10 Apr 1999 03:08:53 -0500 (EST) From: BRIDGETT RYAN Subject: unsolved deaths Kathy, I don't really know too mch about the deaths of these two women. I was just looking through some other sites and somehow came across into this. On Dec. 6th 1996 a friend of mine went to Wal-Mart in Clarksville, TN and was never seen again. She too was a lesbian and was said to have been buried in a nearby creek or river. Although it as been almost three years ago I still think about her and the whole situatuion everyday. How can someone take another persons life like that? I'm sure that these two women were just out trying to enjoy eachother and a little bit of nature. Is it not even safe to try to enjoy your life just because someone else isn't having a good life of there own. If their life stinks so bad that they have to kill someone, let me suggest to them- Think about what it would be like if someone killed the most important person in their life. It doesn't matter anyway, the killers are going to hell for the rest of their eternal life anyway so I hope they like being in hell!!! In closing I would like their families and friends to know that they are in my thoughts and prayers. God Bless and be safe. A.Owens 4/9/99 If any one has any information about the death of SGT Laura E. Cecere email @
Date: Mon, 22 Mar 1999 22:47:47 EST From: Dear Kathy, I am so happy to see that just because Julie's death has gone unsolved, people have not forgotten her. I certainly have not. Julie was my very first school friend. We met the first day of kindergarten at St. Peter's Catholic School in St. Cloud, Minnesota. Even when we were five years old, Julie was about a foot taller than I. She and I became the best of friends, until I moved away to Florida. We kept in touch for years, then it became Christmas cards. Julie was someone I always admired. She was so intelligent and creative. What a gift her friendship was. I am now a high school social studies teacher. On my desk is a photo of Julie- even though we drifted apart once in college, I look at her photo and explain to my students, that one person can indeed make a difference. Some of our most important friendships are those that were cultivated as young children. What a beautiful world she made it for family and friends. Please keep her family in your prayers, they are remarkable people. Thank you for posting your page. Sincerely, Keelin Hurley
Date: Fri, 12 Mar 1999 13:08:44 -0500 From: "James E. Close" Subject: More thoughts... I've been thinking a lot about this case since I first looked into it a few months ago. I guess it brings out the "Columbo" in me. Maybe I should have been a detective in real life, instead of something else. In any case, one thing is indisputable (unless the perpetrator hiked into the park): The suspect came into the Park by vehicle, and left by vehicle. That being established, it follows that he/she stopped at an entrance station, and paid the entrance fee. A park official, therefore, saw this person. Now, knowing that thousands of people probably entered the park over the weekend, it is highly unlikely that the ranger on duty at the entrance station would have remembered everyone who came in during that time frame. I would hope that, among other things, they carefully debriefed the park people who were on duty at the entrance stations to ascertain if they remembered, in particular, any lone individuals (I think it would be safe to say that this was committed by a lone individual). Perhaps hypnosis might help, even. It is, indeed, an extreme long shot. I am going to Shenandoah next week, and, in fact, will be in the vicinity of the crime. I seem to be drawn to it. Why, I don't know.
Date: Fri, 12 Feb 1999 15:24:44 -0500 From: Hello, I just read over the information on this web page and I must say I am heart broken. I had heard about the slayings, but had not really read about it to this detail. I am just shocked and heart broken. I am heart broken for the two women who were killed. I am also heart broken that their dog may have witnessed something so horrific. Ugh, it saddens me. Why? I don't understand why this had to happen. Why are there such crazy people out there killing such warm, innocent people? To think what they went through. To think what their dog went through being on its own for a week after witnessing something so terrible. It all breaks my heart. Is it possible to write to the parents? Thank you, If you have a response you can respond to ""
Date: Sat, 23 Jan 1999 10:09:23 -0800 (PST) From: Susie Wimberly Kathy: As a new resident (10/98) to the area very close to White Oak Canyon, I am begging you, and all of the other good people who need to see this murder solved: Please don't give up; don't give up on Lollie and Julie; keep posting to this site and help to keep it alive. I, too, ride my horse and hike in these mountains. I live here, just down the road from Big Meadows. And, I worry.... VTY,
Date: Tue, 01 Sep 1998 10:35:39 +0000 From: Nexus I just read a story in a Charlottesville, Va. newspaper (C-Ville Weekly). I'd heard something about the tragedy of Lollie and Julie's murders, two summers ago, but this story gave names and faces to the unfortunate victims. I found it very emotional for me to read the details of their killings. My heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of them both. It must be extremely frustrating to all that their killer(s) weren't found yet. It crossed my mind that there have been previously unsolved crimes that had later been solved due the aide of psychics who worked with investigators. I was thinking that this may be an avenue to explore (especially if they work for no fee, or on a contingency basis). The sceptic in me tells me that a good psychic must also be an altruist, and not a capitalist. Best of Luck and Best Wishes to All. Sincerely, Indigo Nightsky, Louisa, Virginia Note: Story mentioned is by Barabara Nordin, whose message is below. --KB
Date: Tue, 25 Aug 1998 12:28:30 +0100 From: Barbara Subject: Recent stabbing of AT hiker The latest case, in which an Austrian woman was stabbed while camping overnight in a town near the AT (Waynesboro, VA), appears to have no connection with the 1996 murders. The FBI has investigated and concluded this guy wasn't involved. The young woman is doing very well and has now continued her travels through the U.S. I interviewed her Saturday night (I'm the journalist in Charlottesville who wrote an extensive piece on the 1996 murders last month; my post is below) and am working on a short piece about her. Barbara Nordin
Date: Sun, 16 Aug 1998 03:12:54 +0200 From: Marion Subject: New A.T. stabbing Hi Kathy, I have created a website about unsolved murder cases from all over the world. Your page about the A.T. murders was among the first I have linked - and it is still one of the best. Yesterday and today I have found two articles in the Whashington Post about a new case that could be in connection with the 1996 murders. Ironicly the new victim is from my country - Austria. It's a small world. Here are the articles and please keep your site running until this case is solved. Lots of greetings from Austria, Robert NOTE: See for links to articles.
Date: Tue, 26 May 1998 15:09:49 +0000 From: Barbara I'm a journalist in Charlottesville, VA (about 1.25 hrs from the general area of the murders), and joined Julie's mother and others this past Saturday for the second annual Take Back the Trails hike. I'm now working on a cover story for the June 9 issue of the alternative weekly I write for (C-Ville Weekly) and would appreciate hearing from anyone who knew either woman and who would like to share any memories, opinions, theories, etc., they have on the case. My number is (804) 296-1484, if you'd prefer to call instead of E-mail. Thanks very much. Best wishes, Barbara Nordin
Date: Mon, 25 May 1998 01:07:09 +0000 From: Julia Daly Subject: another anniversary Hi Kathy - Thanks for keeping this page going. I was a geology major with Julie in college, and her death two years ago saddened me in the deepest way. She remains in my thoughts, espcially in the time I spend outside hiking or doing field work, and more so at this time of year. Like Laura, I'm still checking here, hoping to find out there's been some progress. Even though it's been two years, I have to keep hoping that we'll find out more and that some of our questions can be answered. I know that Julie and Lollie will be in many people's thoughts this weekend. Thanks for contributing your time by keeping up this page. Julia
Date: Wed, 06 May 1998 22:23:45 -0400 From: "E.W. Adams" Subject: Thoughts on the murders I am a former WV State Trooper who now teaches school. I've been milling this case over in my mind and have wondered how close the murder scene was from the nearest roadway or forest service road. I have a theory that whoever murdered the girls came from a nearby road. Just wondering how close the nearest road was. Let me know if you have an idea of the distance. E.W. Adams Disabled WVSP Note: Skyline Drive is just a few 100 yards away. I believe there was evidence to indicate that the murderers came from a parking area along the Drive (and were not hikers hiking in the woods with just packs). --KB
Date: Sat, 02 May 1998 18:31:11 -0400 From: Laura Gibson Subject: any new information It's hard to check in with this page, because the further we get from Julie and Lollie's murders almost 2 years ago, the fewer people write in. Julie was a friend of mine from college, and she lives on in my thoughts every day. I still struggle with not knowing the details, and I find as the anniversary of her and Lollie's murder quickly approaches, the thoughts and questions bombard my mind even more intensely. Please post any new information you may have. I know there is probably nothing new, but I felt a need to echo Jessica's thoughts. It's comforting to know that Lollie is living on in the minds of her friends in the same way Julie lives on in the stories my friends and I have to share about her. Thank you again for continuing to post these notes. Laura Gibson
Date: Sat, 18 Apr 1998 02:04:56 -0600 From: Jessica Subject: Lollie Winnans Hi Kathy, I am wondering if there has been any new information on Julie and Lollie's death. Lollie was a friend of mine at Unity College, and I know none of us have forgotten her. It would just be so comforting to know that even now, some one is still looking for the answers. Has the FBI released any more information? Are there any more leads? There were rumors around school that the girls were raped-- is this true? I would really like to know what is going on in the investigation, or if there is even an ongoing investigation. I miss Lollie and the times we had together. She is still on my mind and it is still hard to believe this happened. Any news you have would be of great comfort. Thank you again, for taking the time to make this web page. It was a great comfort to me tonight, to know they are still missed and remembered. Sincerely, Jess
Date: Wed, 25 Mar 1998 12:22:41 EST From: Kebousquet Subject: Taj the Dog Dear Kathy, I heard about the murders of Lollie and Julie last summer from my dearest friend, who is now married to a man once close to Lollie. The reason I'm writing is two-fold, first I think people interested in this story would be heartened to learn that Taj the Dog is doing wonderfully and living on a farm with my friend and her family in New England. My friends tells me Taj is a very special dog with an empathetic soul and knowing eyes. Just thought readers on this site would appreciate to hear at least one piece of good news concerning this horrific murder. Also, I have not seen anything written on this page more recent than 1997. I wonder what the current status is? It occurs to me that the person who committed this crime might be familiar with your website, and quite possibly have actually had the gaul to write to you, feigning sorrow. As a former newspaper reporter, I can only say that it is mind-boggling how police agencies botch murder investigations. I hope to God that isn't the case here. Please, if you can, keep us up-to-date. Thanks again for providing a voice for those who can't speak for themselves. Karen March 25, 1998
Date: Wed, 1 Oct 1997 19:36:12 -0400 From: Kevin Sellars rangers warning single people about the dangers of hiking alone is stupid. that would be like expecting police to stand on the sidewalks and warn people not to step in the street because they may be hit by a car. we live in dangerous times and if you are not prepared to defend your life at all times, someone will take it. be careful out there, always carry a gun, and know how to use it. kevin
Date: Sun, 7 Sep 1997 07:25:43 -0500 From: Peg Subject: (Lack of) Wanted Poster on A.T. From mid July to early August I was on the Appalachian Trail and Blue Ridge Parkway. Remembering a news clipping that I had seen in the Lesbian Connection about the murder of another two women on the Trail, I was on the lookout for both poster and/or warnings for my personal safety. I travelled with my two dogs as companions. Rangers did ask at the entry points if I was carrying weapons of any kind but didn't offer any suggestions or warning for my personal safety. At designated campgrounds I checked washrooms and shower areas for the poster or information. I asked other campers if they were aware of either a murder last year on the trail, or posters anywhere. The answer was always negative. At the Skyland information kiosk, my last point leaving the park, I found the poster behind a door. Had I not been looking specifically for the poster I would have never seen it. I post this to you knowing that I should have taken my growing anger and frustration to the rangers and literally reamed their asses for their stupidity or lack of concern for hikers that are out on the trail this year. However I was already close to tears with my frustration. Driving into Washington, DC a few days later I momentarily thought of visiting FBI headquarters but knew that I had accumulated two weeks of anger (at the system and my own lack of action). Knowing that, I decided the best part of my own valour was to not end up in jail for what I feared I might do with my frustration in a face-to-face encounter. HOwever I do have these question: Has anyone else encountered the lack of poster? Optimistically the reason I couldn't find any was because people had taken them to pass around? Why are single women entering the park not given warning? Why are hikers entering the park not asked if they were hiking the trail last year, given the poster and asked to distribute it to other hikers on the trail? Given that many hikers will hike different sections of the trail in separate chunks, why is that poster not further south on the trail for those doing a different section this year? The answer to all the why's seems to be that women's lives don't count if money/business as usual is at stake... which would be jeopardized if the tourists stayed away until the murderer(s) were caught. If you post this anywhere, or forward it, please delete my email. I am not proud of being so cowardly that I didn't create a public scene while in the park. Peg
Date: Sun, 10 Aug 1997 10:14:03 -0400 From: ELK STORMS ( Subject: Let's get involved and stop these crimes... I have just stumbled across this sight but I have a few comments anyway. I have not yet read the details in full but I had heard about this somewhere and had wondered what became of it. I am glad there are those out there that do care enough to keep on top of these crimes... No matter what or how long it takes... I grew up in Pennsylvania. I have spent more time in the mountains then in my own home. From the Susquehanna Valley, The Loyalsock Trail, World's End state park, and now I make my home in the Kinsua Valley region.... I have walked the trails, camped out and also be stranded a few times in many of the said areas... Usually alone. I have seen just as many strange occurrences as I have met great people. These mountains are used for all types of reasons.. and unfortunately some of these reasons are for crime. I have become involved with a search for a Missing Person from my area. I have been out there and I mean out there...... I can not believe the things I have come across just within a 15 mile range of my own home... Dumping, Vandalism, Poaching, and Illegal Substance Crops !!. I am angered.. disgusted and a little ashamed... Why did these things occur and where were we when it did ???? We must stay alert and get involved... If we want our environment to be safe, we must make it that way... Criminals come in all forms, shapes and colors.... Therefore if you see something out of sorts..take a note, make a call...Get out there and make a difference.. let it be known that we are not going to let horrible crimes happen... I want to know that our children at least can leave the city and be safe in these mountains.... If you would like to hear more about me you can check out my homepage. Thanks for your time and consideration.
Date: Fri, 25 Jul 1997 03:45:20 -0400 (EDT) From: Subject: Hiking, lesbians, and stuff in general There are just a few things to address here, and I'll try not to preach, but I feel driven to at least comment. The idea that the killer in this case was a Boy Scout or Eagle Scout for some reason is something that I'd like to take up with whomever bothered to voice it so "matter-of-factly". While many scouts both Boy and Girl, as well as Campfire, Explorer and other youth organizations use the trails in the Shenandoah National Park and the AT, the immediate assumption that this person was a Scout is nothing short of rash. There are MANY people, from all walks of life, who travel these trails repeatedly! (As well as Rangers, Forestry Service, volunteers to clean and repair trails, birdwatchers, etc.!) As anyone who hikes knows, it is the person and not the "program" that makes a good hiker and builds one who "knows the lay of the land". The killer, quite simply, has a far greater statistical chance of being a non-Scout by a LONG shot, considering the sheer number of people who make use of those trails in any given year. Perhaps, you should examine your prejudices? I'm not a Scout, nor do I defend them as guiltless angels. But I do think you are jumping to conclusions. The especially sad thing here is that the chances are real good that the killer (like many of his ilk) probably did exactly what someone else mentioned... drove to a part of the trail where hikers would be accessible and "took" them, possibly posing as a hiker, but almost certainly using the car as a means of ingress and egress. Most killers of the type who would be suspect in this case are remarkably mobile and travel great distances or use vehicles to secret evidence, bodies, etc. for good reason. Concerning similar comments voiced by a number of different folks concerning the possible lesbian connection... Again, examine your prejudices. You do no know what happened out there. It is only your own sensitivity about persection which is making you assume that it was someone with a vendetta against lesbians. It could have just as easily been someone far too thick headed to even conceive if/that they were lesbians, but motivated, quite simply by a blood lust to kill and attracted to 2 women as either "classic" targets, or victims which because of some similarity/link with the killer's past "triggered" the murderous response. In many cases, a physical trait, action, response to the killer, etc. will be what "sets them off". (That is, if the testimony of the many killers themselves in jail or already put to death is to be taken into consideration.) In any number of cases of "organized killers", it is planned ahead of time and merely "bad luck" for whomever he runs across when his plans are all ready to be played out. It could, and probably does have no more meaning than that. You may like to think that their death had some deeper meaning, but please realize that often it is just the opposite... That many vicitims are not targeted for some "reason" but just because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Concerning guns on the trail. I own a gun. I hike. I do not take my gun hiking with me. I take "other" measures, however I don't like mixing the two. I am not saying be a purist and "tough it out". Go protected, but wisely. If you do not know how to use a gun, if you are not comfortable with a gun, if you are afraid of guns, by all MEANS do NOT go out on the trail with one. For those with the pat answer that you will have it taken away from you and used on you I say bull. If you know your weapon, are not afraid to use it, and are alert and responsive, then you will not be unarmed in most cases. It is the folks (male and female alike) whom I am referring to who do get disarmed and hurt. If you own a gun, LEARN HOW TO USE IT. Be comfortable and unafraid of it. It is of no use to you if you don't know how to use it or don't intend to use it. Since this is the case with many women, I would reccommend other means of protection. But I would not urge you to stick your head in the sand and say "not me", or "it couldn't happen here". It can and does. The only way not to live in fear of it is to take up your "arms", whatever they may be, and be prepared. I'm not saying that you will never fall victim to anyone, but you will increase your chances of survival and, if done right, show would-be attackers that you are not an "easy mark". It is really sad that this all had to happen. Much sadder when coupled with the panic and fear that it creates. Those creatures among us (I hesitate to use the word humans or people) who can perform such deeds are few in the overall scheme of things, and yet they hold a nation in an ironclad grip of terror. Only when we join together like this to solve crimes, resist bad influences, understand each other, support and love those even unlike ourselves, and defy their oppression can we truely breathe easy...walk tall... be free. I hope that each of you affected enough by this tragedy to be here reading and talking about it instead of shrugging it off will break free of your fear and refuse to let it keep you prisoner. The folks who advocated self-defense have the right idea, if the wrong means. As do the folks who wish to honor the memories of these two beautiful and unfortunate women. Don't let this stop you from living your life as you want to live it! Be smart, be strong, and be free! Don't let someone else take your world away from you, or diminish its beauty with their foulness. But PLEASE take care of yourself. Hike smart so that we can all see you on the trails instead of in the newspapers. Enough said... It is late. I'm rambling. Cathy
Date: Mon, 21 Jul 1997 11:00:02 -0400 (EDT) From: I have read the FBI agent's comment that these murders have similarities to the Colonial Parkway murders in 1986, but I have been unable to find out what similarities that would be other than the obvious. I have a suspect that has possible connections to both the murders but my contact with the FBI and the police has not been very useful. Does anyone have more info on the links between those two sets of double murders? Also, I would like to know if anyone sited in the parking lot or on the trail on May 24th through 26th, a 5'11" black male, age 32, 190 lbs. If it was during the day, he would have been accompanied by a black female, also age 32, 165-175 lbs and possibly an elderly female and a slightly built thirteen year-old boy. He would have been driving a dark blue Honda Civic. If it was in the evening, he would have been driving the same vehicle or an old white Chevy pick-up truck. If anyone has see this man in the area on that weekend, please contact me at my e-mail address.
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 1997 22:59:20 -0400 From: Eleanor Rigby ( Subject: Suggestion I've been camping in the park for 20 years. Did anyone contact the telephone company to check the calls made from the pay phones at the campgrounds, lodges and visitors centers? Everybody uses those phones to let friends know they arrived safely or to tell them where their campsite is if others are arriving later. I know from experience that after a few days you can get bored, call a friend and invite them up for the day or even camp overnight--again telling them where you're camped. Just a thought. My sister Jane, her grandson Steven and I were camping a couple of miles from Skyland at Big Meadows that weekend and I was there again this Memorial Weekend. Our thoughts are with Julie and Lollie's families. e.r.
Date: Fri, 27 Jun 1997 02:31:04 -0400 (EDT) From: Subject: Still Unsolved. Hello.... Although I did not know Julie & Lollie, this tragedy affects alot of us in so many ways. I used to hike & camp same areas where this occured, what really scares me is the fact that I had just camped there a week before this occurence. Me and a companion, and both of us females and both of us lesbians. Errie similarities we had our dogs, although i am in Law enforcement and have been officer for 11 yrs now, an I always carry my firearm. Not for fear in woods but because of the crazy society we live in, when you are out here among the criminals every day you would apt to carry weapon 24 hr s a day 7 days a week. I love the outdoors but by the same token this is an open invitation without a front door lock and without a burglar alarm for some lunatics. While I was camping like many other times, I always have that feeling that someone could be watching me. When I was camping this time, I didnt see or hear anything out of order. It sickens me to wonder if this was a HATE crime, and the longer this goes unsolved the harder this will be to be proven in a court of law. I hope family has private investigators as well working on this. I wish there was some kinda insight I could give you, I check this web sight monthly, hoping you have a break through. I find it really hard to believe that these 2 women let thier guard down, so I almost wonder if they knew the suspect. Or did the suspect catch them off guard? And wouldnt you think it would be more than one suspect? to over power these to apparently strong women? I pray for thier familys... But NEVER give up here in Md we had an unsolved murder you may recall Jamie Griffith , it went unsolved for nearly 10 yrs but finally caught suspects and charged them with murder and finally found his body, But it was his family 's Private investigators whom discovered the evidence and body. Unfortunately I have to say police departments are over worked under staffed and do not have time nor man power to work nonstop like familys wish we were The only way to stay on top of all of it is to have it pursued 24 hr s a day 7 days a week.. Just when the case slows down, and the investigation seems to hit a stand still, the killer or killers will feel like they got away with it. Please keep going and never give up, this will eventually be solved, and the killers will screw up, I'm sure it wasnt thier first nor thier last killing. Keep the faith..I'm always looking in corner of my eye when i camp now, but I pray women dont camp alone, before or after the murder it wasnt safe. Take care always Officer J.T. B.
Date: Wed, 18 Jun 1997 01:16:18 -0400 (EDT) From: on June 1, 1997, myself and one of my dearest friends left New York City to spend a week in the Shenandoah Park, hiking and "getting away from it all". Upon arriving in Harrisonburg, I stumbled across a front page article about the horrible murders of Julie and Lollie last year. I came back and told my friend. We were so horrified and saddened by their deaths. They seemed like beautiful, loving, brave young women. Their murder haunted our entire week. How sad it was to feel nervous every time we spotted strangers on the trail ahead. How awful to have to carry mace while in the sanctuary of a national park. And how wrong to have to feel afraid simply because you are two women hiking alone. At one point, we even debated going home. Yet we both realized that that is exactly what Julie and Lollie would have NOT have wanted us to do. I am sure they would tell us all to continue to live and share in the beauty of our national parks, to honor and enjoy these God given gifts. And most importantly, to NOT LIVE IN FEAR. I hope and pray we will not allow whomever did this to these young women to weild that power over us. I know it has been over a year since their murders, but I truly hope the FBI is still working to find the murderer(s). They deserve to be punished to the full extent of the law. They deserve to never again see another tree or hear a bird sing or gaze at a waterfall. I hope they find them. I will keep that in my prayers and thoughts. I will keep hiking.
Date: Sun, 1 Jun 1997 18:50:49 -0400 (EDT) From: Just a personal opinion. I would probably look for an employee(i.e ranger) or some- one who lives very close to the vacinity and/or who is a regular at that park. They seemed pretty happy in there picture. therefore it doesn't appear that they felt any threat from whomever took the picture. I think that it was a hate crime, possible from someone who is an homophoebic. probable someone they interacted with for a period of time during there camping triip. Maybe, the sick individual had other ideas in reguards to a fantasy with 2 women and when it didn't go the way he wanted hishate and anger took over. I bet this person is normal in appearance, with an outwardly seemingly nice personality, but a bad temper, and probably someone who is involved in the investigation in someway or another, and he's probably good with animals.

NOTE: There is nothing to indicate who took the pictures of the two of them together. In fact, if the killer had used the camera, it seems likely the person would have removed it from the scene to prevent fingerprints from being gleaned from it. -KB

Date: Wed, 22 May 1996 22:57:59 -0400 From: Laura Gibson ( Hi - my name is Laura Gibson and Julie was a friend of mine from college. I check in with your page periodically - it's still my root to what is going on (or not) and people's reactions to the tragedy. I just wanted to make sure that the information that this last person sent in and you posted had made it on to the fbi, because I know that for a while after the murders last year, they didn't know this page was in existence. I'm continually stunned at the poor communication that exists in the world, and this page seems a really key way to get communication going. Thank you so much for maintaining it - it means a lot to me to be able to open it up on occasion and see that people haven't forgotten what happened. It's especially hard right now, at this time of year - Laura Gibson
Date: Mon, 5 May 1997 20:29:40 -0400 (EDT) From: Subject: Recent killings I recently returned to NY from NC, traveling along route I-81. As we entered VA from NC, we stopped at a rest area in Ironto and discovered ourselves in the midst of a crime scene. Someone had been murdered there during the week and left to be discovered by travelers and workers. According to the Roanoke paper, this is the 2nd murder at VA rest stops on I-81 in the recent past. I wonder if the killer has moved from the footpaths of the AT to the interstate which runs parallel to it? Terry Sperato
Date: Sat, 19 Apr 1997 00:56:42 +0000 From: NVS ( Subject: A CURIOUS BROWSER WHO LIVES NEAR APPALATIAN TRAIL IN PA Hi! My name is Steve and I live in Mt. Holly Springs, Pa., one of the small communities which are very close to the trail. Was just browsing the law enforcement website where I ran into this site. I am immediately reminded of a situation that occurred locally, among several others, that have happened over the past few years. The first issue I'm referring to is a duffle bag that was discovered in a trash dumpster in Dillsburg, Pa. after someone observed a person placing it there. The duffle bag or whatever was reported by police to have bloody rope, rubber gloves, and other articles inside it! Although I believe this was before the incident you are concentrating on, it could possibly tie in as there are at least two other murders of women in this local in the past two years, as well as a third woman from Tennessee who mysteriously dissappeared in Carlisle last year. Additionally, there have been frequent breakins to cabins in Cooke Township, near Laurel and Fuller Lakes! If there is a serial murderer migrating via the trail, and jumping off the trail into our communities in search of supplies or a victim, I suppose this could be linked to whomever is doing all of this! Perhaps it is the same killer, I don't know, but I was not sure if anybody involved with your case had heard about any of these facts! The three unsolved cases are Jane Doe, who was found dead in South Middleton Township, I believe, off of Wiskey Springs Rd. Am not sure if exact method of the murder was disclosed. The other incident which remains unsolved is the Westfall case, in Silver Springs/Mechanicsburg area. It was disclosed that she was stabbed or slashed or both, I'm not certain, but a knife was the murder weapon! I know it's not much to go on, but I was just reminded of these local cases when I saw your page, and wanted to be sure that you were aware of them! With two young daughters of my own to be concerned about, the thought that perhaps a predator of women is using the trail to migrate in conjunction with the roadways that transect it along the way! We frequently see hikers walking through town, and it's quite unsetteling to think that a serial murderer could be "hiking" down our streets! Let's leave no stone unturned to bring whomever did this to justice! I hope this is of some help to you if you are not already aware of them! Kindest regards, Steve
Date: Thu, 17 Apr 1997 22:01:23 +0000 From: Dear Kathy, Julie Williams is my cousin. She was the nicest person I knew. She never treated any one bad in her life. I can not belive any one would want to do this to her and Lollie. I met Lollie once and she was the same way as Julie. If you the latest info. about the case please write back.
Date: Sat, 29 Mar 1997 17:51:59 -0800 From: Maura White I was searching law enforcement web sites and can across yours dedicated to finding the murderers of the two hikers. It is a tragedy. With efforts like yours, and those of the community, I expect the killer(s) will be caught. I would put money on it that it is a serial killer and former Boy Scout/Eagle Scout who is all grown up and believes in the National beliefs of the Boy Scouts: no gays, no girls and no Godless. An unfortunate belief.
Date: Sat, 22 Feb 1997 15:23:35 -0800 From: ( Subject: Weapons on the AT Kathy I was disturbed to read the note from the woman advising us all to bring weapons on the Trail. If we read all the info you have so faithfully linked to this page, we know Julie and Lollie were very capable of taking care of themselves. I'm forced to think that whoever committed the crime was able to control the scene, most likely, with a gun! Bringing a weapon into the woods just places a person into the dangerous posibility of someone taking the gun and using it on THEM; literally arming an otherwise unarmed assailant!! We all can't walk around the trails with our weapons drawn, waiting for a would be assailant to show up. Besides, it's illegal to bring weapons into state parks. Whoever killed Julie and Lollie wanted to kill. We ALL want the murderer found. Guns in the woods won't do it. Write to the FBI encouraging them to keep the case at the forefront of the investigations. Get involved with the "Take Back The Trails" initiative. Speak out against violence against women, all women, outdoors and anywhere. Keep you gun home. So no one can take it away from you and maybe, use it on me.
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 1997 09:17:05 -0500 (EST) From: I have not throughly researched the infro on these horrible murders, but I have some ideas concerning this case. The AT is often used by boyscouts to obtain patches ect. and eagle scouts as well who are often older. I think the police will find that the killer is a former eagle scout who has hiked this trail many times. There was a posting concerning a law enforcment officer in the area who had remembered a series of killings going back quite awhile. I hope that this has been researched well. I would look at sex offenders who have been in the boyscouts. I am sorry for the loss of these too women who had such bright futures. But it is good to know that so many are working to try and solve these murders. Jeanette Westbrook [Note: While the murders did take place about 1/2 mile from the AT, there has been no connection made to the AT with respect to the murders. The site was much closer to Skyline Drive, and I think most assume the murderer(s) came and left by car and were not hikers.]
Date: Sat, 8 Feb 1997 07:19:28 -0500 From: Ken & Carol ( Thank you for the work you've done in assembling the info re the tragic deaths of these two women. I knew Julie personally through church in Burlington Vt. and had somehow never thought to do a web search on her name. I appreciate your efforts. I did wonder why there was a link from the Tragedy on the AT back to the AT home page, but no link (or did I miss it?) from the AT page to the Tragedy page. Thanks again for keeping this info up to date. best... ken brown NOTE: The page is now linked from the Virginia area of the A.T. page. Also, Ken's note made me realize that I had incorrectly titled the tragedy page. While the murders were in the general vicinity of the A.T. they were not on the trail.
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 19:55:18 -0500 From: Susan Schroeder Subject: Crazy People/Tough Woman On Trail I am reading about more murders on the A.T., and; I have to say that I would never travel on the trail without my weapon. I know there is a lot of controversary about guns on the trail. But no one is going to stop me from enjoying myself. Murderers beware, you will pay by having your heads blown off. I think that if more murderers were aware that women have the means to protect themselves, they would think twice before trying anything on the A.T. Please note that I am married, we have our own engineering company, I am involved with community volunteering. I stand out because I think life is fragile and I am not afraid to protect myself. Please ladies, I hope that you never allow yourself to be put in a situation where you can be overtaken and if you do, please bring a weapon. Love to you and especially Julie & Lonnie "Two-step"
Date: Tue, 21 Jan 1997 21:22:39 -0800 From: Liz Morrison

Dear Kathy,

Please visit
This is a trek dedicated to Lollie & Lollie.

We would be interested in your interest, feed back, etc.
This mission has impassioned many, myself included.

Thank you for this space.

Katt Eaton

Date: Mon, 02 Apr 1990 09:00:24 -0700 (Actually: December 6) From: (Keith Dunagan) Kathy... I have lived in sw Va the better part of my life and can remember several homocides that have occured a long the sereral years later I am an investigator for a local sheriff's office in sw Va.....I have always suspected that the trail may be plagued by a serial killer that has yet to go undetected...I wish you the best of luck in your investigation and being in the area and having local law enforcement connections....if I can be of help let me know.....Keith
From: "Sackett, Matthew Amn."( Date: Thu, 28 Nov 1996 21:25:05 -0500 Dear kathy, My name is Matthew. I have been a fire fighter for over 4 years and I have been associated with law enforcement for over 3 1/2 years. I am at work looking through the Internet for law enforcement jobs and I ran into your articles on this devastating story. I have been illiterate when it comes to US News lately and I have not heard about this situation. I makes me sad to see this kind of violence happening in the land of the free and the brave. By taking the career fields I have chosen to take, I have seen this human sin all too often. I fell bad for the two ladies who involuntarily became helpless victims in this terror but what amazes me is the support from the people of our nation and other nation. It makes me proud when I see people joining together to solve a crime or to help someone they do not know. Crimes get solved and stories get told when we join together. The purpose of this letter is to commend you on the dedicated job you have chosen to do. I wish you and everyone who is involved the best of luck in trying to find this crazed maniac. If I can be of any help to you in any way, please let me know.
From: Date: Sun, 24 Nov 1996 08:41:55 -0700 Dear Kathy, Thanks for maintaining this page. I went to college with Julie, and I visit here often to look for new information. I thought you may want to add a link to the article in Out Magazine: -Nyla NOTE: Thanks, Nyla. I have added the link on the main page.
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 1996 15:57:19 +0000 From: Erika Jarvenpa Dear Kathy, I was just taking some time to read about this tragic incident, and I was so glad to find this page. Juile was my cousin. While we were never really close, I thought of her often. This event has had such an impact on me in many ways. I am 20 years old, a college student, etc. I just have a hard time understanding why this had to happen. I'll never forget Julie and I as children. Every summer we would gather at Grandma and Grandpa's lake home and play. It is really my only memories of Julie, but they are so strong and vivid that I am glad I have them. I am very interested in hearing more and more about this case, and I am trying to stay on top of all the new information. Like I said I never really had the chance to know Julie well, but she will always be an inspiration to me for all the good that she set out to do. She is always in my thoughts. Thanks again!!! Erika Jarvenpa
Date: Sat, 02 Nov 1996 15:13:56 -0500 From: Laura Gibson ( Hi, Kathy- thank you again for maintaining this page. I check in with it often. I just want to remind people that the Out magazine article on Julie and Lollie is in the current (November) issue. It is one of the most thorough articles I've seen, and it helps readers to gain an understanding of who Julie and Lollie were as people, and to celebrate the lives they led. Laura Gibson
Date: Mon, 28 Oct 1996 18:20:24 -0500 (EST) From: Steve Hendrix Subject: Coming Backpacker article Kathy, My name is Steve Hendrix. I'm a freelance writer in Takoma Park, Md. I'm writing a commissioned article on trail crime to run next February in Backpacker magazine. Our piece stems from, but is not limited to, the killings of Julianne Williams and Lollie Winnans last May. Your site has been of immense value to me, providing me with information and contacts. Would you mind if I asked your readers to contact me at I'm interested in a) their thoughts on how safe are the trails and the backcountry, b)whether fear of crime has caused them to change their plans or practices in any way, and/or c)whether or not they've ever had a criminal encounter in the wilds. If you're willing, feel free to post this message. Again, thanks very much. Steve Hendrix .................................... Date: Wed, 23 Oct 1996 09:05:24 -0400 A woman in AZ is making a quilt and each panel will be dedicated to lesbians who have been murdered.When finished, the quilt will be avail for display with just a charge for shipping. This appeared in the NOV?DEC issue of Lesbian Connection, a nation wide newsletter. ...................................... Date: Tue, 08 Oct 96 19:34:15 -0700 From: Lisa Medley ( Thank God! I am so glad there is someone out there concerned about keeping this alive until an end is found. I have been so angry about the coverage in my favorite magazines "Backpacker" and "Outside" a sidebar is not enough. They should be taking up full page wanted ads in an attempt to aid in the capture of their murderer or murderers. I am 28 and female. I hike often alone. I LOVE IT! Now, it is definitely marred. I tell friends and family that I could be attacked in the mall parking lot or even my home more easily than on the trail. There is danger everywhere. This is like murder in the church of the outdoors. This is sacrilige. NEVER FORGET LOLLIE & JULIE. They are all of us. I bought a gun after this event. I carry it. I will use it without remorse if I have to. If I can. Maybe this is extreme but so is murder. Keep hope alive parents of Lollie & Julie. Our prayers are with you. Love always, TrailRover ....................... Date: Sun, 29 Sep 1996 23:18:46 +0600 From: Ira Wilsker ( Just to let you know that I added both a link and a headline to my website about your situation. Best of luck! Ira Wilsker *NOW* LAW ENFORCEMENT and LEGAL are MIRRORED! LAW ENFORCEMENT SITES, MIRRORED AT: LEGAL SITES (mostly criminal law) ...................................... From: Conrad Bailey ( Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 22:20:34 +-1000 Dear Kathy, Hi my name is Conrad and I'm from Brisbane, Australia. Well its about 10 pm and I was just surfing the net checking out the different sites and I came across your home page/site. I began reading about the deaths of Julie and Lollie and as I read the various articles and stories, looked at the photos of the two girls, I asked myself a question..."Why did these girls have to die?" Why did the good lord let this happen. I am not overly religious or anything but it really made me sad. It seems like society is falling apart, and to think that there is someone out there who walks and lives going about his/her daily routine really angers me. The only comfort I get, is knowing that both girls have gone to a better place. You should be very proud of your effort with this internet site, as you can see there are people from all around the world who now know a little bit about what kind of people Julie and Lollie were. Although I will never meet them, I now know that they existed, and had hopes and dreams, just like I do. Thank You. This is what I think. Live life to the fullest always and go after all you're hopes and dreams, and if it happens that we die before our time, then remember that we are all going to meet again one day at the crossroads. Take Care, Conrad. ............................................. Date: Sun, 22 Sep 1996 21:45:20 -0500 From: CITS-JB09B-03 ( it is mid september. I am back at school. This summer I lived in Maine, and while there I decided that after graduation I will hike the trail. Two days after this momentous decision I started talking about it with people at work, and they all said I was crazy--hadn't I heard about the two women who were murdered. I hadn't. I asked around, and found out it was true. Then the nightmares started. For a few weeks I would regularly dream i was hiking with the women when it happened. I had no other information, only that it had occurred. In august I hiked Mount Katahdin in Baxter state park, and at the visitor's center I saw the poster. Finally the victims were real for me, names and faces...smiling faces. Embracing life. I broke down then and there. My sorrow and rage are beyond expression. The whole climb up katahdin I could think only of them, and of the hate and violence that grows like a cancer in this nation. I am scared to death, but I WILL hike the trail. But more importantly, for julie and lollie, the people who loved them, and any people who have ever loved inspite of persecution, I resolve not to let evidence of hatred, homophobia, mysogyny, etc. go unchecked in my presence. I hope others resolve to do the same. Open your mouths, stand up for decency, kindness, understanding, love in all of its forms, and make it very hard, very uncomfortable for the hate mongers of the world to get their message out. Be mindful of the businesses, and leaders you support--be aware of where they stand. If you and i don't do it, who will? Most of all, get outside, enjoy nature's abundant peace, take good care of eachother, and don't forget julie and lollie. J. Deane S21206JD@umassdart,edu. ................................ Date: Thu, 19 Sep 1996 19:33:09 -0500 From: Mike Gustavson-Unger ( Kathy, I thought that you, and the readers of this page, might want to know that an article is supposedly coming out in the October issue of __Out__ magazine. It was written by Barry Yeoman , who requested to interview me, after seeing my comments on the Tragety on the AT page. I was wary about the interview, and the tone of the story, but after speaking to Barry at length, I think that it will be nicely done, concentrating on Julie and Lollie as people who happened to be gay, not as gay people. I haven't yet seen __Out__ magazine on the newstands, but the October issue should be out relatively soon.... Once again, thank you for this page -- it is the only page that I repeatedly visit, and the only one that I have visited every 3 to 5 days for the past 3 months.... Mike NOTE: Someone else reported that this article will be in the November issue, rather than the October issue. ............................. From: "MIKE DEXTER" ( Date: Sun, 8 Sep 1996 00:15:09 EST Being from Maine it seems places an added risk on you when you are hiking the trail. If my memory serves me right more than half of the people that have been murdered while hiking the trail have Maine roots. I think that we tend to be less suspicious of people up here and maybe that is a bad trait when you are out of state. But I hate to think that a tragity like this makes some people apprehensive of going out and experiencing the trail. I think that hikers like to think that by going out on the trail that they are away from all the ills of society but they some times they are only removed from them by a few miles or less. I guess that all we can do is exercise a little more caution when we are passing through the more populated areas of the trail. But lets not think that guns are going to prevent something like this from happening. I would be more nervous about meeting a nervous hiker with a gun than I would an encountering a killer. Besides these crimes seem to have been commited by someone that the victims trusted so the chances that a gun in the pack would have been little use. Maybe pepper spray carried on the belt would be a better choice if one feels that that they need a little security. we have to put these crimes in context and understand the the world is becoming a more violent place all the time and that violence is reaching out into areas that were once thought as safe. living in Maine for 40 years I have seen crime reach out into areas where it was unknown back when I was a kid. We can't let fear control our lives or ruin our love of the outdoors we just need to pack a little more caution in our packs when we're out there. after all 99.999% of all the people that you meet on the trail are ok (except the ones that hike through the 100 mile wilderness in black fly season. I know they are nuts),it's only a rare few that we have to be careful of. Let's hope that the dirt bag(s) that commited this crime will be caught and given justice. See you on the trail. ...................................... Date: Thu, 05 Sep 1996 10:58:24 -0700 From: Rosemary ( On Wednesday, Sept 4, the weekly edition of the Page Courier , the local newspaper for the Luray area (the murders happened in this county) a large reprint of the poster with Julie, Lollie and Taz' picture on it was published. Also, a statement saying that the families were requesting any info. The reward has been increased to $50,000. The first $25,000 from the FBI, the other $25,000 from the Fingerhut Corporation! I don't know where else the ad appeared, but I thought you'd like to know it appeared here too. Rosemary ........................ Date: Fri, 23 Aug 1996 01:31:30 GMT From: (Ben T. Walters) I keep returning to this page in hopes there will be some information regarding an apprehension of those responsible for this senseless act. Toward the end of April, my family and I ventured out to the Bluff Mtn. area near Hot Springs, NC to view the area before the US Forest Service allows clearcutting in close proximity to where the AT meanders through this segment of the Pisgah National Forest. It was an ideal day for a hike, even with a five year old in tow, there were still plenty of spring wildflowers and the forest was in the process of greening up. The highlight though, was the steady stream of through hikers making their way from Springer Mtn. to points north. I talked with quite a few and passed out a few soft drinks we had stashed in a cooler, querying all about their trip and living vicariously through the tales they spun from journeys. When I heard of the murders in Shenandoah all those voices flashed back to me, and I prayed none I'd spoken with were victims. Although I didn't know Lollie and Julie, their sense of adventure and love of the woods will never be mute to my ears. I hope this case can be soon solved and that their family and friends will find some peace. -- Ben T. Walters ................................ From: Beth Lambert (lambertb@ava.BCC.ORST.EDU) Date: Sun, 28 Jul 96 14:51:54 -700 Kathy, Thank you very much for continuing to post information and links on this page. Julie was a close friend of mine in college and has been a role model for me since then. It is good to know there is a place where I can find information about the investigation. I am out in Oregon and so I don't have access to most of the newspapers where information is released, and I don't have a TV. I appreciate the time you spend putting this page and the links together. I am sure other people do too. Thank you, Beth Lambert ................................. From: NUCMED@Gems.VCU.EDU Date: Sun, 21 Jul 1996 10:20:19 -0400 (EDT) Personal_name: Hunter West Raiford It amazes me that there are many who think that carrying a firearm in the backcountry is somehow immoral or not in keeping with the "spirit of the trail". These same people will cheerfully bring along all manner of first aid kits and similiar items "just in case", but shun the notion of packing something that may save the most valuable thing they have - their life. I venture to guess that had those two unfortunate women who were brutally murdered had a pistol or revolver in there possesion, they would be alive today and hailed by all for destroying the vermin that instead has destroyed them. I am a highly educated medical person, I enjoy the outback, and am on the trail wlth a pack on my back as often as my busy life will allow. I am prepared for any eventuallity whether it be medical or malevolent. I am not paranoid nor am I a wierdo. Nor am I naive. I would advise everyone who ventures out into the wilderness to put aside your carefully cultivated bias against firearms and train in their proper use. Maybe we can turn the tables on the next creep whos dares to violate the sanctity of the wilderness with their sick desires. Go in peace. ....................... Date: Sun, 14 Jul 1996 21:23:31 -0700 From: Barbara Nicholls ( I am a fifteen year old whose dream has benn to take a year off before college, and thru-hike. Upon hearing of this catastrophic occurence, I am exremely worried about fulfilling my dream. I have talked with quite a few of my friends who enjoy hiking as much as I do, and we were trying to think of ways to guarantee our safety. One person mentioned taking a dog, but that obviously doesn't work, maybe going in a large group, but that can destroy the experience of being self relient. I would be greatly appreciative if you could help me find a way to make thru hiking a safe and pleasurable experience. Smiles, -a concerned hiker/climber/paddler ............................... Date: Mon, 08 Jul 96 11:28:15 0000 From: Bill Jesdale ( Kathy, Thanks for your helpful page on Julie and Lollie's murders. Julie was a very close friend of my sister's. On my homepage, you will find a transcript of the NPR story from June 17th, if you want to make a link to that. Also, on this coming Friday, the TV show "Unsolved Mysteries" will be doing a segment on these murders. I myself will probably skip it, as I fear I will be upset by the sensationalism, but others may find it interesting...

Thanks for your informative site,
Bill Jesdale


Date: Thu, 04 Jul 1996 08:58:20 -0700
From: Kurt Petersen (

	I can't imagine something like that happening along the trail.  I
remember reading a story about some other killer being on the loose
several years ago.  It's a shame that we can't seem to feel safe along the enjoy the beauty of nature and the night, without worrying
about hazards.  Still, the occurrence of such a thing is much less
proportionately than in the city, I would say. 
	I was sorry to hear about the whole thing, and as someone who
would like to tackle the trail someday, it has stirred doubt in my mind. 
Especially when I think of how much I love the outdoors, just like those
girls, and how much I look forward to hiking, camping, etc., just like
them.  And how excited I'll be when, and if, I prepare to go on the trail. 
An event like this is senseless, and I hope that the FBI catches the
person(s) who did it. 




Date: Wed, 03 Jul 1996 17:59:52 -0700
From: Edna Comstock (

Kathy, Thanks for maintaining this page.  What is happening now?  Any 
leads in the investigation?  Let's not forget them.  

Palermo Maine


Date: 28 Jun 96 09:38:58 EDT
From: Shaun Stephens (73750.3170@CompuServe.COM)
Subject: Julie

Dear Kathy,

    Thank you for putting together this information site about Julie and
Lollie. Julie was my wife's and my friend here in Burlington, VT.  It has
taken a long time to overcome the anguish and find a sense of peace about
this, we are still not there yet.  For Julie's sake, I hope that people
don't become too fearful about being out in nature- it is exactly the
opposite of what she would want. 
    I think it is unfortunately the case that, if someone really wants to
kill you, they can do it.  Julie and Lollie did everything right.  The
point, though, is not to live in fear of this possibility.  Your own life
becomes a prison if you live in constant fear of your life. 
    That being said, I hope that people might consider more positive
preventive measures than just carrying guns or pepper spray- counteract
hate:  don't let lesbians, gays, blacks, immigrants, environmentalists,
etc. become scapegoats for the real problems people are experiencing. Help
people find real solutions for their problems:  unemployment, mental
illness, bad education, poverty, etc. Provide an alternative to the
    Thank you all for all your kind comments.  -Shaun.

Joan Kahn & Shaun Stephens, 09:38:01 EST, 28-Jun-1996


Date: Wed, 26 Jun 1996 18:58:36 -0400
From: "Hanes, Richard" (

  First I would like to thank you for maintaining this page.  The 
information posted and exchanged here could very well lead to the capture 
of the cold blooded predator who committed the murders.  
     I have hiked parts of the AT in NC, VA, and NH and always thought 
one of the best parts of any trip were the people I met.  There are  
hikers I have spent one evening with that I will remember warmly for the 
rest of my life.  Meeting people and exchanging hellos, information about 
the distance to the next shelter, quality of water source, warnings about 
mice or a leaky roof or news from the outside world are all part of the 
back country experience.  
     Now because of  some heartless monster all of that has changed.  
Thoughtful, caring people are now considering whether they should carry 
firearms into the back country to protect themselves, and hikers view 
strangers with suspicion.  I am both angered and sickened by this 
tragedy.  I do not have any answers.  The only thing I can do is to keep 
hiking, help my fellow hikers if I can, and keep alive the memory of two 
wonderful, brave young women.      

Date: Wed, 26 Jun 1996 21:51:45 -0400
From: (Rosemary)

I was glad to find your page, once I found out how to do a search( I am real
new at web) 
I live a few miles from where the girls were found. The mountains look sad
to me these days. Seeing Skyland lit up makes my heart jump. I was up on the
drive with my partner one nite that week, we go up there when the moon is
full. That week, we timed it wrong and it was the last nite of the 3/4 moon.
We were marvelling at the brightness. I bet the girls were too.  Info is
sooooo scarce, I don't know anything except what you printed. 
As a member of the gay community, I must tell you that this area (or VA for
that matter)is not known for tolerance. I would not be surprised to learn
that the girls left the more traveled trail in search of solitude.
Apparently, they did not flaunt their sexuality but it's hard to hide
genuine caring between 2 persons.
 Every week, an editorial or worse, a paid ad, directed at condeming
homosexuals, hits our local newspapers. What stops someone a bit out of
touch from deciding to do "god's will". I wish everyone was civilized but
it's not a fact. 
So, safe to think "isolated" can mean hate crime.

This weekend is a "blue Moon" the second full moon in one month. It happens
once in a blue moon, thus, the name. 
Both women apparently were very loving, genuine, caring people. I wish I had
known them. What a loss. Remember them with "the blue moon"


Date: Sun, 23 Jun 1996 14:56:49 -0400

An article bearing this title appeared in the Knoxville News-Sentinel today
(Sunday, June 23).  Source was the New York Times News Service, written by
Rick Bragg.  Deals with the murders and safety from maniacs in the outdoors
in general.

You may want to add the article to your update.  

[NOTE: I could not find it online, but, if it appeared in the Times, some 
poeple may be able to find it and read it.]


Date: Fri, 21 Jun 1996 13:49:28 -0700
From: "David P. Dusenbury" 

>June 17 NPR Morning Edition Story revealed that the photos on the reward 
>poster had come from a camera found at the scene. The question that
>arises then is about who took the picture showing both victims together. 

This made me wonder:  has anyone been able to recognize the background in 
the photos?  Are these spots in the SNP, or further South on the AT?

BTW, the rhododenderons in Grayson Highlands were perfect last Monday, in 
full bloom!  (Going again tomorrow!).

Thanks, David P.

[Note: Someone familiar with the Park has said he thinks they look like they 
were taken in the Stony Man vicinity. --KB ]

Date: Fri, 21 Jun 1996 13:58:10 -0700
From: Karen Rahmeier (

Try contacting the gay/lesbian newspaper, Wisconsin Light, for their 
article on the event.  It seems the victims were lesbian lovers, which 
begs the conclusion that the killing was because they were lesbian, which 
I think highly probable, and abhorrant.

[Note: Found article and linked to it. See main area of page.]

Date: Thu, 20 Jun 1996 23:08:42 -0400

Dear Kathy,
         I'm sure I have a most unpopular view, but here it is. A woman or a
few  women alone in the woods, with no phone and no door to lock out
intruders - the best defense is a gun. I know, it's the Appalachian Trail,
nature, peace, etc. I've been there. But it will not be safe just because we
wish it is so. One hiker was trained in self defense!  I am a woman, a gun
owner, a law abiding citizen. I want to live. I also want to go out and
experience the world without some weirdo hurting me. So why can't we get
real, change the rules of the parks, and allow me to carry a gun, be safe,
and have fun outdoors - while hurting no one?
          I hope hikers who are determined not to carry guns will at least
carry cell phones so maybe they can get help if necessary. It could help in a variety of situations.
           And about the legality of carrying guns in the parks - certainly I would not want to be accused of encouraging anyone to break a law. I just
want people to stay alive!
                Liz from NC

Top of Page
Date: Tue, 18 Jun 1996 16:21:38 -0400

Thank you for your page on Julie and Lollie.  I was a classmate and 
friend of Julie's @Carleton, and the lack of information about the 
murders has been hard to deal with.  But your page has done a lot to 
answer some of my questions.  Thanks for this....



Date: Tue, 18 Jun 96 12:25:06 -0700
From: dilligaf (

Thanks for having this page up, and thanks especially for the page on the 
murders of Lollie Winans & Julianne Williams.  We check your page often 
for news, since this is the only source we've been able to find.  Even 
though we didn't know these two women, we have been deeply saddened by 
their loss, outraged by the handling of the case, and are also saddened by 
the loss of our personal liberty.  We both enjoy that area of the 
Shenandoahs, and no longer feel safe camping there..even if we did feel 
safe enough to camp there, it wouldn't be the same. Our thoughts return to 
these two women and the tragedy of their loss.

Date: Fri, 14 Jun 1996 23:53:01 -0400
From: Dave Ropiski (

My heart goes out to all who knew these two women in the face of the 
recent tragedy on the AT. I have thru-hiked the AT twice and never get 
tired of talking to people about it. It is unfortunate when something 
like this happens and such negative publicity about the trail gets fed 
to the general public.

 The most disturbing part of this tragety is that it happened in one of 
the most visited parks in the country. But perhaps even worse is this 
guy is still on the loose. Lets hope this guy is caught so the families and 
friends of the two hikers can have some closure and everybody on the 
trail can feel a little safer.
"The Beauty"


Date: Fri, 14 Jun 1996 15:03:33 -0400
From: Marshall DeBerry (

  Here's a url someone posted in rec.backcountry that has some background
from one of the women who were attacked in the 1988 AT shooting in PA.
It's a background piece in regards to a book she has written;
you might find it interesting.....the address is:




Date: Fri, 14 Jun 1996 16:09:29 -0700 (PDT)
From: "L. Gibson" (
Subject: Julie and Lollie

I want to thank you for your thorough coverage of this tragedy. Julie was
a friend of mine from Carleton college, and I will miss her very much. I
had just met Lollie this past spring in Vermont, and she was also a
beautiful woman, full of compassion and life.
I, too, have racked my brain trying to figure out what possibly could have
happened to these women. They were both expert hikers, and they were also
very aware of the dangers posed by strangers. Julie, ironically, had taken
a self-defense course for women during 1994. It's hard not to feel
helpless as a woman living in a culture where violence against women has
become commonplace.
Thank you for keeping this home page going. I would like to echo your
words in asking anyone who has any information whatsoever about this crime
to contact the FBI immediately.
I will miss them dearly,
Laura Gibson


Date: Fri, 14 Jun 1996 12:07:50 -0500
From: "Barbara A. Stiefel" (

The loss of Julie and Lollie is a great tradgey.  All of us left behind 

All hikers must continue to reach out to one another.  We ensure safety 
and peace in our natural home by being friendly by talking.  I have 
spent much energy trying to piece together the events leading up to the 
murders.  I  have a feeling the perpertraded was invited into camp.  
This is not so unlikely, for I have during a solo hike met a needed 
hiker, and shared what I had.  At the time I shared a smile, some 
encouraging words and a meal.  Why would I do that, because I couldn't 
accept the thought that I could fear another human being for no reason 
besides their great level of need. These young women appear to have been 
open and loving, in the spirit of which we should all try to achieve.   
Their work and attitudes would make a similiar outreach on their part 
likely.  The answer is not to be more careful, to be more suspicious, 
but rather to be more open.  

The murder of these two women's proves the need to be a strong 
tight knit community even more important.  The spirit of the trail and 
our continued safety in wild areas is dependent on our concern for one 

May the spirits of Julie and Lollie continue to prosper in peace.


From: "John Kochanowski" (
Date: Fri, 14 Jun 1996 10:33:40 -0600

Hi Kathy, 

     My name is John Kochanowski.  I just heard about the sad event 
that has taken place on the trail. . . I was wondering if you could 
help me.  I did a portion of the trail in Va. from Hwy 60 to Rockfish 
Gap on May 18-23.  I had met a couple of people on the trail and a 
couple were women. .  . The area where this occurred was a few days 
from where I left off.   I was wondering if you knew the names (Trail 
names) of these two ladies.  I would hate to think that this happened 
to any of the friends I made during my short stint on the trail.  I 
hate that it has happened at all. . .  Anyways, any info you can give 
me would help put my mind at ease. . . By the way. . . there were two 
girls that I talked to briefly that were hiking with there dog but 
cannot remember their names.  
     On a lighter note. . . thanks for the page. . . especially the 
Kushmans . . . Youre page and their reports gave me the final 
incentive to head out by myself on the trail. . . a beautiful 
experience. . . again Thanks. . . keep up the great work!


Date: Fri, 14 Jun 1996 09:11:36 -0400

Our family has hiked the trail in Shenandoah for 20 years, since our
daughters were 5 years old.  We re quite familiar with the area and are
following this case closely.  Naturally we are saddened ant outraged.  Two of
my daughters were hiking through Skyland 3 years ago and were frightened by a
young male of slight build who said he worked at Skyland.  He was dressed in
black and asked them all kinds of questions.  He seemed to be most interested
in their relationship to one another and seemed to be less curious when they
told him they were sisters.  I have read the stories that these women were
lesbians and some people are angry that that personal information has been
made  public but it certainly may be a clue in the discovery of the murderer.
 It certainly may have been a hate crime as there seem to be enough radical
individuals  out there who are looking for any reason to commit murder.  My
prayers are with their families.


From: "Rebecca Feind" (
Date:          Thu, 13 Jun 1996 13:36:23 EDT
Subject:       The Trail

Kathy, thank you for your well organized home page.  I've been using 
to keep up with news about the trail since my dad-in-law is hiking 
the trail this summer.  

Thank also for posting information about the recent tragedy--the news 
is terrible, but is important to know.   Hopefully, the more people 
are aware of what happened, the sooner the murderer will be caught.
It is sad that some of the dangerous animals in the park include humans.

This may seem trivial in light of the fact that two women are dead, 
but I can't help wondering what happened to their dog, Taj.  Has he 
been found?  And if he has been found, what's happening to him?  Does 
he need a ride home to Vermont, or does he need a new home?  I would 
hate to think that he is being overlooked during this crisis.   I'm sure he 
is missing his owners.  As a dog-owner myself, I just can't help but 
think about him.

If Taj needs a home or needs a ride back to his home, my husband and 
I would like to help in anyway we could.  If you hear anything about 
him, I'd appreciate seeing it on the home page or receiving a 

I hope the magic of The Trail can be restored for those hiking it 
right now.  Please look out for one another, and if you see "Will 
Makit", aka "Iron Will"  say hello!

Rebecca Feind

(NOTE: Ranger in one of the TV reports said the dog was fine and being 
taken care of.  Though I know it's not a good idea to assume, I imagine 
that one of another of the victims' family members or friends has 
provided a home for Taj. --KB)


Date: Wed, 12 Jun 1996 14:33:30 +0000
From: David Williams (

I learned of the sad, senseless, wasteful crime last gloomy Sunday 
when visiting Skyland. My jaw dropped open as i read the color flyer 
posted on the door.

Bless those two brave and inspired women. Brave for living freely as 
one should expect to in this country. Inspired for finding part of 
that freedom, and its richness, through the beauty and spritual 
experience of nature.

They were robbed of life. And we were robbed again of our 
already-delicate sense of privacy, safety and trust of our fellow 
wanderers. Events like this illuminate the cautious undertone to the 
word, "stranger."

May the investigators find the guilty soon. May the families and 
friends find comfort in time. May such violence end. 

Until then, take care of each other.



Date: Tue, 11 Jun 96 12:27:00 EDT
From: ( (Virginia A. Wiese)

Thanks again for providing a site for the collection of information regarding the tragedy and thanks for the inclusion of the article from the Blade.  

Peoples lives, and who they are is a private matter.  Whether or not these 
women were lesbians is not the issue.  But the issue of sexual preference is 
a factor if the killer did what he (an assumption) did, because he thought 
they were lesbians.  The murderer is the one who is on trial here. 

And you know, if this was a "hate crime" then maybe there ARE others on the 
trail who could be at risk.
I've hiked these woods and trails many times.  Ater hearing the news, a 
concerned friend of mine called me.  He asked that I say a prayer, or focused thought, for the two murdered women and myself.  I pass on his wish and each time I go into fear or anger, I try to remember to take that energy and ask for support and light fo

r the two women, their families, friends, and loved ones. 

Sometimes I do include myself in a prayer.  The woods and mother earth is my 
healer and spiritual teacher.  This is most sacred space, that I and many 
others need desperately in our lives.  

Thanks again for your articles.



Date: Mon, 10 Jun 1996 22:49:17 -0700
Subject: sorrow

One of the really difficult things for me about the recent murders is 
that as a long distance hiker (88) I've always thought of the trail as 
safe. Everyone I've met on the trail, no matter how eccentric, I've felt 
safe with. Now when I go out I'll feel uneasy. That really takes alot out 
of the beauty of the experience of the trail. I am really sorry for the 
family's of these two women. And I'm also sorry for all the hikers yet to 
come who cannot feel the ease and safty I experienced. 
	The other thing I'm troubled by is the lesbian issue! They were 
hikers, they were one of us. Nothing more needs to be said beyond that. I 
don't see any reason to segregate them from the rest of us! I hope they 
catch the person that did this, and I hope they lock him/her up in a 
place where they never see a green thing again, and where they never hear 
another birdsong as long as they live.
	Its a very sad thing and I hope God will be very gracious to them

Stu   formerly thru-stu-the-mega-mouse


Date: Mon, 10 Jun 1996 12:39:57 -0500
From: (Kiesa)

Someone asked about services/vigils for the 2 women; there was one in
Burlington, VT last night. I only found out about it today.  I do know that
there will be a rally, spurred on by the murders, in Burlington protesting
violence against women/lesbians tomorrow night (Tuesday) at 7pm.
Information on the protest can be had by calling the Burlington Women's
Council at (802) 865-7200.


From: Allocthon (
Subject: RE: vigil and other things, for the Tragedy web page.
Date: Sun, 9 Jun 1996 22:08:49 -0600

Carleton College held a service for Julie on the 6th, and I know there 
was more planned to happen in St. Cloud, but I know of no events that 
were planned near the location of this crime.

What makes me the most angry reading the newspaper articles, besides the 
awfulness of it, is all of the stuff about how people need to be more 
careful when out in the parks, as if these two weren't. I travelled with 
Julie for 3 months in Italy, and she was a very experienced woods 
person, who was always careful. They were found inside their tent. What 
should we do when camping, erect a metal cage on the inside of the tent? 
Carry Uzies to shoot anyone who looks suspicious? They did everything 
correctly, from what I can glean from the terribly un-informative 
articles that have been issued so far.

And a question, I'm unfamiliar with what the juristiction is for 
national parks. Is that why the FBI is involved, instead of the park 
service and local authorities?

Kathy, thank you very much for maintaining this page. Out here in the 
Northwest it's been very difficult finding out information.

Karen Swanberg


Subject: Shenandoah Murders
Date: Fri, 07 Jun 96 10:18:00 PDT

Do you know of any group preparing a vigil or memorial service for the two 
murdered women???  I would be interested in participating in such an event.
I'll check this webpage for responses.

Barbara Kraus

(Note: If anyone has such information, please write to

Date: Wed, 5 Jun 1996 10:50:54 -0500 (CDT)
From: Sandra Downs (
(Post from AT mailing list)

Just feel the need to share my pain over the incident. After reading the
posting, I cried. It's horrible that there's so many sick people in this
world, and that one of them had to invade what we consider a pristine area
to commit this act. I feel for these women's families, and for hikers alone
on the trail. - Sandy
Sandra & David Downs 		(
 Pittsburgh, PA        	     	Visit Cyberwall!

Date: Wed, 05 Jun 1996 11:20:46 -0500
From: Gary Burns (

Hi. I'm an editor for the Times-Dispatch in Richmond, Va. We're 
following the murders, and would appreciate it if you could put us in 
touch with any of the volunteers at the scene. My phone number is (804) 
649-6824. You, or anybody who can help, can call collect. E-mail me at 
this address during business hours, or at home after 8 p.m. The address 
there is Thanks,

John T. Witt


Date: Tue, 04 Jun 1996 12:41:15 -0400
From: Jarett (

I am sorry to hear of the misfortunes of the women hikers especially 
seing that I will be going there in july for some hiking.  i also do a 
lot of hiking mainly with other women friends so it really puts thinkgs 
into perspective about  crazies even in the woods.  i always felt safe 
in the mountains but I will be more leary.  My condolences to their 
families.  Barbara Dyer


Date: Tue, 4 Jun 1996 10:35:45 -0700
From: michael henderson (
Subject: shenandoah tradgedy

obviously, this is very upsetting.  if you learn any more, especially in
regards to long-distance hikers in the area, please let us know.  we've
heard nothing about it out here on the west coast.


(as always, thanks for the AT page)



Michael E. Henderson	E-Mail:
Royal Robbins, Inc.		Web Site:
1314 Coldwell Avenue	Phone:	(209) 529-6913		
Modesto, CA 95350	 USA	Fax:	(209) 522-5511


Date: Tue, 4 Jun 1996 14:34:19 -0600 (MDT)
From: Karen Swanberg (
Subject: Murder in  Shenandoah Park

Hi. I knew Julieann Williams, one of the women murdered in Shenandoah 
park. Thanks for putting it on the web, and I'd be very interested in any 
information you find. Since I'm in Montana, I'm having a tough time 
getting info. Anything you can find out I'd love to hear. I'll check in 
to your page, so don't worry about mailing me. =)

Again, thanks

Karen Swanberg


Date: Wed, 05 Jun 1996 06:40:58 -0400
From: Michael Shook (

I'm heartsick at the news of two young women being killed on the AT. My
own daughter and 2 friends have returned from the AT in the last 3 weeks
(trail names, Turtle, Yoda & ET) It could have been them. Even though my
own daughter is safe - I feel that two precious daughters, sisters, have
been lost. Safety and trust are precious in this world and now we and
especially those on the trail will feel less safe. Its a tragic reminder
of the chaos that results from one person who looses balance, turns away
from God, gives in to evil. 

I hope for all of us at home and you on the trail, that hope and trust
will continue - that all the wonderful family of hikers will prevail in
their good works. 

I am grateful to many of you hikers - Download & Nexmo in particular, many
others whose names I don't know, for the wonderful experience of my
daughter and her friends, for many kindnesses, acts of rescue and caring
that were given them on the trail. I know that this is the AT norm. 

To the families of Julianne and Lollie - there are no words really - but 
my heart shares your grief - my prayers are with you. 

Susan Plimpton
Southwest Harbor, Maine

Date: Wed, 5 Jun 1996 11:21:07 -0400 (EDT)
From: Dorian Winterfeld (

Hi Kathy-

I was staying at Rock Spring Cabin this weekend (May 31 to June 2).  
On Saturday morning a ranger stopped by and talked to my girlfriend; I was 
out collecting wood.  He asked if we had seen two women with a Golden 
Retriver.  We hadn't, but we kept an eye out for them the rest of the day. 

Then on Sunday morning another Ranger stopped by, she seemed very 
grim, and asked for the cabin log without any explanation.  We asked 
about the two women and she said that they were still missing (guess the 
news hadn't been released to the public yet).  As were hiking out she was 
still reading the log.  I didn't think more about it until I saw the Post 
on Tuesday morning.  I'm still in shock.  

This incident really pisses me off.  I can remember at least two other
murders on the AT.  One in ~80 in southern VA and then the one in 90 in
PA.  And every time it happens they say it's "an isolated incident". Well,
I hope they catch this guy soon.  

Thanx for maintaining this sight and please keep us updated on the case. 

An interesting note: A friend stopped by the cabin on Friday afternoon; 
she was driving by on Rt. 33 and decided to drop by and say hello.  She 
warned us about a "weird guy" that she saw on the AT while hiking in from 
the parking lot.  She didn't elaborate on what made him "weird" other 
than he had no pack or gear and acted nervous and evasive. Maybe it was 
the guy the rangers already picked up.  More likely it was a completely 
innocent person out enjoying a hike and falsely labeled "weird". But just 
in case, I gave her the incident report hotline number and she's planning 
to call and tell them what she can.

- Dorian Winterfeld
  new PATC member
Date: Wed, 5 Jun 1996 14:02:27 -0400

Kathy: I know it's contrary to all we hikers hold dear, but I can't help
thinking that a cell phone and/or an authorized "backpacker shotgun" might
have helped prevent this tragedy. Yes, I know... But what's the alternative?
Hike in groups of 10 or more. Men only on the AT? Wait for it to happen

Date: Tue, 4 Jun 1996 10:48:52 -0500 (CDT)
From: "Steven Speak" (
To: Multiple recipients of list (
     Speak on, Poohbear.  (Note: In response to another message.)
     This is truly bone-chilling because most of us head out for hikes 
     (long or short) to rekindle our souls, check in with nature, and test 
     our will, with little thought in mind of the problems that plague 
     urban centers. When I heard about the Williams and Winans deaths this 
     morning I was deeply saddened that this kind of atrocity could invade 
     our world - the AT or any other trail for that matter. My heart and 
     prayers go out to them, and their families. From what I have read this 
     morning, they were pursuing an avocation they loved. Pray for their 
     souls to walk in peace, knowing the truths they discovered in the 
     In our saddness, let us not be jadded. 
     The North America is full of beautiful places that you can only see if 
     you put a pack on your back and walk a few days to get there. For many 
     of us, there is no better way to spend our days away from work (or 
     school, or whatever) than walking a trail, either alone or with a 
     trusted partner. 
     I have begun to see many messages on the the lists about what to do 
     for personal safety. I hope that this incident does not inspire folks 
     to begin packing 9mm pistols and the like. In my opinion, if you are 
     insecure enough about your safety that you require a hand gun on the 
     trail, please choose another avocation. I know this is controversial, 
     and I am not adovocating that hand guns be banned, but I do beleive 
     that they have no place on our trails (epecially on the east coast 
     where grizly bears haven't roamed in a few milenia). 
     Incidentally, I have corresponded with a number of folks (primarily 
     women) who resolve their concerns over safely hiking alone by hiking 
     with their dogs. Dogs (especailly big dogs) tend to mitigate threats 
     from hostile, insecure, humans who tend to perpetrate violent crime. 
     It is interesting that a dog recognizes these traits in humans faster 
     than we do. I frequently hike with my dog - and plan on having him 
     with me when I undertake the A.T. He is one of my best friends, and I 
     look forward to his company on the trail. An added benefit is detering 
     threats to my safety. 
     Let us not be ruled by those who harbor hate and maleviolence torward 
     other beings. Let us not live in fear of those who will try to rule us 
     with cowardly, pathological, behavoir. Let us walk softly along our 
     trails, rekindling our spirits and strenthening our souls. We are the 
     children of light, let us walk freely, unfettered by the children of 
     darhma bum and the b-man

Thoughts about the situation from the PATC forum.