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Man who got away with robbing bank finally confessed to family on his deathbed after 52 years on run from police
Featured Image Credit: Family Handout

Man who got away with robbing bank finally confessed to family on his deathbed after 52 years on run from police

Tom Randele wasn't who he said he was

We'd all like to think that we know our families well, but sometimes they're not quite who we thought they were.

One person to experience this first hand was Ashley Randele, who had a close bond with her father, Tom Randele.

Tom sadly died from lung cancer in 2021, and it wasn't until his final days that he made a huge confession to Ashley about his life before she was born.

Ashley came to learn that her dad wasn't actually called Tom Randele - his birth name was, in fact, Theodore 'Ted' Conrad.

Speaking on the Smoke Screen: My Fugitive Dad podcast, Ashley recalled: "He said, 'If I tell you, you have to promise you will not look into it. I don’t want you looking into anything. I don’t want you telling anybody'."

He then shared that he had been involved in one of America's greatest unsolved bank heists back in 1969.

In July of that year, Conrad had been working as a bank teller at Society National Bank in Cleveland, Ohio.

He had access to the vaults as part of his role and a few days later, bank managers realized that $215,000 was unaccounted for.

Ashley shared her dad's story on her podcast.
NBC News Now

It's believed that the money would be equivalent to around $1.7 million today.

Conrad then fled the area and moved over 750 miles away from Cleveland to start a new life in Lynnfield, Massachusetts - where he got married and became a father.

For the podcast, Ashley tracked down her late father's friends and former girlfriends from his life in Cleveland in a bid to find out more about her illusive dad.

While Conrad told his daughter not to research his criminal past, she still did.

“I’m alone in my childhood bedroom, and I Googled ‘Ted Conrad missing,’ and the first thing that came up said something like, ‘Vault teller robs bank'," she told CNN.

"I was like, ‘Oh my God, this is my dad, and there were hundreds and hundreds of articles about him."

Ted Conrad has been on the run for 52 years.
Ross Anthony Willis/Fairfax Media via Getty Images

A few months after his passing, police turned up at Ashley and her mom's door.

While they'd planned on telling the police themselves, the authorities beat them to it after someone sent his obituary to a crime reporter in Ohio and suggested that the man was actually Ted Conrad.

They told investigators everything they needed to know and, in return, they assured them that they wouldn't face any criminal charges.

Speaking on her podcast, Ashley concluded: "He was always so relaxed and easy going.

"I would have never guessed how many secrets he had."

Topics: News, US News, Life, Crime, True crime