Ashley Randele had a close relationship with her father who treated her as a confidante rather than a daughter.
“I think that he would have told me things either because he thought that I could deal with it better than my mother or that I had this terrible gift that allowed me to compartmentalize and store things on a shelf,” Randele recently said of her father. Randele was a car salesman named Tom Randele.
She told “Smoke Screen: my Fugitive Father”, in an episode released Monday.
Even with this level of trust, his daughter said that Tom Randele waited to his dying day before revealing a shocking fact: that he was not Tom Randele — . Instead, Ted Conrad pulled off one the nation’s greatest unsolved heists.
Conrad was born on July 10, 1949, not July 10, 1947 as he claimed.
Conrad died at the age of 71.
“He said that if you tell me, you must promise not to look into it. I don’t want to see you look into anything. I don’t think you should tell anyone,'” the daughter said in the podcast.
Conrad, who was employed as a vault teller at the Society National Bank of Cleveland, went home nonchalantly from his job on Friday, 11 July 1969, according to U.S. Marshals Service.
The marshals’ service reported that it wasn’t until Monday when the bank managers realized that $215,000, or $1.8 million today, was missing. Conrad was also missing.
He left Cleveland with his cash and began a new life. He left behind all of friends and family.
Conrad’s heist was not a complete shock to those who knew him best. The 20-year old had been fascinated by the 1968 classic film, “The Thomas Crown Affair.”
Conrad is taken by Steve McQueen’scharacter Thomas Crown who, for fun, pulls off a Boston bank heist.
According to podcast friends, Conrad would talk openly about how easy he’d find it to steal money from his bank.
Russell Metcalf, Russell’s best friend from high school, told the podcast that he has never stopped thinking about him. “Because it’s 52 years, and I kept thinking that I would run into him, see him, or talk to him.”
Metcalf had lunch and dinner with Conrad in the days before the heist. Metcalf and Conrad were supposed to be playing golf that Saturday, but when they didn’t show up, Metcalf who worked at a nearby bank did not panic.
Conrad was gone. And so was $215,000 by the next morning. Metcalf said that he was called to the attorney’s office by his bank.
“There were two men in suits at his desk, and I looked at both of them. I don’t even know why I did this, but I said: ‘You’re with the FBI. How much did he get?’ Metcalf claimed he made a joke, not realizing that this was no laughing matter. His friend had just disappeared with a small amount of money.
They said: “Well, we can’t talk about that but do know where Ted is?” ”
Conrad assumed a new identity, and moved to Lynnfield, Massachusetts. Ashely Randele remembered him as an adoring father who liked double-pleated golf shirts and khaki trousers.
She told the podcast that she thought she knew her father, but it wasn’t until later on when I learned he had been a fugitive since decades.
Ashely Randele says she struggles to believe that her father was a master criminal.
She replied, “Absolutely no.” He was always relaxed and easy-going. I never would have guessed the number of secrets he held.