Police suspect a woman, found burned to death in her crashed car, was murdered.
The car was found engulfed in flames
The tub was full and the phone off the hook
On the morning of April 29th, 1986, a farmer working his fields near Lawton, Oklahoma,
noticed smoke rising from a nearby road. He called the authorities and twenty minutes later, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol arrived at the scene. They discovered a burning car embedded in a deserted bridge, the heat from which was so intense that the car had actually melted into the metal guardrail. Inside the car, officers noticed something disturbing. Lt. Larry Sallee of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol:
“When Highway Patrol arrived, a body was inside the car, but it was a futile exercise to try to get to the occupant, due to the fact that the car had already burned so badly.”
The body was burned beyond recognition. Skid marks indicated that the car’s speed at impact was 50 to 60 miles per hour. To the highway patrol, it seemed like just another senseless accident.
The car belonged to Pat Conway
A computer check revealed the car belonged to Pat Conway, who lived with his family in Lawton, 15 miles from the crash site. The next day, the victim was identified as Aileen Conway, Pat’s wife of 33 years. Authorities reported Aileen’s death as an accident. But soon, Pat noticed a number of conflicting facts that led him to doubt the official story. Pat Conway would eventually conclude that his wife had been murdered:
“There’s no doubt in my mind it was murder, and if I live to be a hundred years old, I’ll still be pushing to try to find the individual or possibly two individuals, whoever was involved.”
Pat first became suspicious when he returned home a few hours after his wife’s death to find the patio door wide open. Aileen’s purse, which she always carried with her, had been left behind. Her driver’s license and glasses were inside. An ironing board was set up and the iron left on. Water from a garden hose was running into the backyard swimming pool. In the master bathroom, the tub was still full of water and the phone was off the hook. All of these clues seemed more than suspicious to Pat:
“The thing that really got my attention was the phone being off the hook, as though she’d attempted to make a phone call, possibly to the police department. We have no way of knowing to whom. Between me and the kids, one would see one thing, and one another, and we start putting it together and right away we found out, well, this was no accident at all.”
A church bulletin was found in the grass
There was another disturbing detail that nagged at Pat: what would Aileen have been doing out on that lonely country road? Neither of them had ever been in the area. Nothing about his wife’s death made sense. Pat contacted Investigator Ray Anderson of the District Attorney’s office:
“The first impression that I had, of this case, when I met with Mr. Conway, was that of a spouse that was left alone, not expecting the tragedy that happened and looking for some reason why this happened, other than it just being an accident. However, when you start looking at the extenuating and surrounding circumstances, the way that she left her house, it leads you to believe that there is a possibility that there could have been foul play.”
A few days later, Pat and Ray Anderson went to the crash site, looking for clues. Ray found a church bulletin in the grass, a considerable distance from the bridge. Pat recognized it as having formerly been on the dash of Aileen’s car. But Aileen always drove with the windows rolled up and the air conditioning turned on. The bulletin could not have flown out of a moving car. So the car would have to have been stopped. Ray Anderson began to come up with theories of his own:
“Someone else may have been with her, opened the door, set the accelerator, and slammed it into drive, hoping to run Mrs. Conway off into the creek, and to make it appear it was an accident.”
Burn tests were performed on the car fabric
As a result of Anderson’s investigation, the Lawton DA changed the official cause of death from ‘accidental’ to ‘unexplained’. The D.A. then asked the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation and the state fire marshall to evaluate the possibility of arson. Sonny Sansome of the Oklahoma State Fire Marshall’s Office:
“What made me suspicious, at first, was looking at the photographs and seeing how much burn was in the vehicle. This thing was completely burnt and destroyed. The burn looked like gasoline or something along those lines was used in it. And another thing that brought my curiosity up was the fact that the gas cap was missing. Most arson cases, and this is documented, have a vehicle where the gas cap is removed, and that was the case here.”
Informal burn tests on dashboard and upholstery samples from a car similar to Aileen’s suggest the inside of her car may have been doused with gasoline. Sonny Sansome was among those who conducted the test:
“We took the material and we applied a blow torch to it, set the material on fire, then removed the blow torch and the fire went out, which is consistent with a flame retardant-type of material. Next, we took some gasoline and soaked the material, and then, of course, the thing was completely destroyed. Without some type of an accelerant like gasoline, the fire would not burn that badly.”
If Aileen Conway was murdered on the bridge, that raises two questions: Who killed her, and why? Paul Renfrow of the Oklahoma Bureau of Investigation:
“We don’t really have an answer. There are a lot of theories floating around. Perhaps she interrupted a burglary. We backtracked a little bit into the neighborhood and apparently there had been reports of burglaries in the weeks and months preceding this situation. So, the possibility of an interrupted burglary is there.”
Aileen’s husband Pat refuses to give up:
“Even though you’re discouraged, you keep pushing it every day. It’s on your mind all the time. But, somehow, it needs to be solved. I’ll never quit, as far as trying to solve the case.”
Watch this case now on Amazon Prime in season one with Robert Stack and season seven with Dennis Farina. Also available on YouTube with Robert Stack and Dennis Farina. Various seasons available now on Hulu.
SUBMIT A TIP
The very first episode of Unsolved Mysteries is one of the most puzzling ones. Something isn’t right about it. I tried to figure out why she did things, and was unable to. Back then we didn’t know about Silver alerts. We unfortunately didn’t use those until decades later. But fundamentally it was an accident. They police completely searched for tire tracks and footprints. The investigation was thoroughly done. The husband however made me think it could have been an arson. You always want the windows rolled down to allow more oxygen. But when a car crashes, there are no windows, glass is not indestructible. I can’t figure out the water. Sometimes when taking a bath you will only get hot water having cold water go out another line. Toilet flushes are more difficult than a waterhose. But then you have the iron and other things. She clearly didn’t finish anything she started. I’m not a doctor and I can’t diagnose her with anything. But she was not a normally behaved person on that evening.
I just watched the episode and i believe she was secretly on drugs. The way she left the house the lack of any evidence of foul play the car could have easy had a full tank of gas i have seen cars on the side of the road from cars catching on fire and the way the testing was done is really stupid cars are full of gas and so there was one varible that was left out from the testing. 2 years ago i had a co worker that died of an over dose and not a single person encluding his parents (he lived with them). We was all completely confused he was someone that didnt at all live a life that even remotely showed any signs of drug abuse and with her body burnt up no way to test for that. Her husband was confused also on why she had all that stuff going on at once so ya some people are saying she mutitasker and stuff. If that was the case then that wouldnt have been a surprise and it would have just been over looked i believe the best way to say this is to quote a book.
” When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth”.
HASN’T ANYONE REALIZED THAT THERE WAS NO INFO ON WHAT HER MENTAL HEALTH WAS, OR WHETHER OR NOT SHE WAS WITH ANYINE NEW OR SOMEONE MAD IN THE UPCOMING DAYS BEFORE HER MURDER. LIKE DID THEY LOOK FOR CCTV FOOTAGE OF ANYBODY SHE WAS WITH AT ANY LOCAL STORE OR GAS STATION?? DID SHE HAVE ANY CLOSE RELATIVES OR FRIENDS WHO KNEW ANYTHING ABOUT HER BEHAVIOR?? WAS SHE FREQUENTLY CHEATING ON PAT?? WAS PAT A DOMESTICATELY VIOLENT PERSON WHAT WAS HIS CRIMINAL BACKGROUND?? DID HE CLAIM ANY LIFE INSURANCE?? WAS THERE NEIGHBORS AT THE TIME WHO SEEN HER LEAVE THE HOUSE WITH ANYONE AND IF SHE LEFT BY HERSELF?? I COULD GO ON THERE WAS SO MUCH DETAIL LEFT OUT TO DETERMINE IF A PROPER FULL INVESTIGATION WAS PERSUED AT THE TIME AND STARNGELY ENOUGH WAS THERE ANY OTHER DNA IN THE HOUSE AT THE TIME SHE LEFT HER BELONGINGS MAYBE SHE WAS SCARED AND LEFT ALL OF HER STUFF, SHE MAY HAVE NOTICED SOMEONE OUTSIDE SHE RAN TO THE CAR AND THEY WERE FOLLOWING HER AND THAT WOULD EXPLAIN THE EXCESSIVE SPEEDING THEY WERE PROBABLY WATCHING HER FOR A FEW DAYS FOR WHATEVER GOOD REASON WHETHER IT WAS TO STALK OR TO ROB. I BELIEVE SHE WAS CHASED AND SHE CRASHED AND THEY SEARCHED HER CAR AND WHEN THEY DIDN’T FIND WHAT THEY WETRE LOOKING FOR THEY BURNT THE CAR TO RID OF ANY DNA EVIDENCE, AND ALSO DID THE FARMER SEE ANY OTHER CARS AT THE TIME THERE WOULD BE NO WAY THE PERSON RAN THAT FAST AND FLED FROM THE SCENE
There was never a full investigation because in the beginning the police believed it was an accident. There was never any forensic testing in the home.
There was a partial autopsy done which included a toxicology screening. There were no drugs or alcohol in her system.
And you looked at it correctly. It is like a sudoku puzzle, the only way to figure it out sometimes is to fill in the blanks with a pencil and see if you can complete it. Everything centers around her.
Pat was innocent. Quit trash g him and the family. Y’all sound heartless.
Aileen was killed by some psycho who got away with it. Pat didn’t do it.
He had nothing to do with it. It would have taken a dozen people to do what I believe that lady accomplished by herself.
After reading all the comments I am questioning the logic of every one throwing Pat under the bus. The man is not alive to defend himself. Also the theories are far fetched. First the filling if the pool, what was the weather during that time. It is possible it was warm enough. Also unless you have never filled a pool you would not understand the time it takes to do so. The phone, it was the 80’s and a lot of people would leave the phone off the hook for quite time. Having the bath and the ironing, very doable. Most definitely likely she was pressing her outfit for the day. If they had a fair income it’s possible that she would want to look nice and neat. Due to the lack of evidence of any kind of struggle seems clear that she was approached by someone she knew. The person could have come before she had the chance to take the bath or turn off the iron. I personally think she was overpowered outside and probably killed quickly. Put in her car which then was driven to the dump site. Most likely the person had a partner who followed her car. To avoid being noticed they probably drove like normal. Once at the bridge the could have placed her body just right that the heavy foot was used to make the car drive. This part is tricky without seeing the road. If she was still alive at that point there may have been attempt’s to control the car. Also if she was alive they very well could have fiddled with the breaks making them unusable. (Cut break lines not unheard of.) Whomever did this did well enough to make anything possible by distroying the evidence. We don’t know the full condition of the body other than she was unrecognizable. Without that information we can’t know what the actual case of death was. She could have died in many many ways. Without some information it’s difficult to figure out the who or the why. It could have been the contractors. She was very beautiful perhaps it was a sexual motivated crime. It could have been a revenge kill if whomever did it was fired. There’s just not enough information to know what happened other than the home which she was alive, no information, then the fire. Without the middle the odds of this ever being solved is very unlikely. But the forensics today could bust this wide open if they have all the evidence stored. Many cases have been solved that was cold for decades. That being said I think the family shouldn’t give up trying to figure it out. Basically none of us can state anything as fact without a whole lot more information about the case. We can guess all day long but it won’t solve this. What we can do is respect the dead and not play the blame game accusing those who can not defend their selves.
It’s unlikely the brake lines were cut due to the fact there were skid marks. However it has never been determined whether those skid marks were from severe braking or acceleration.
How could someone else have done it though? How could they have staged the crash and gotten away from it in time as to not be wounded ? (if they were driving or her, either way, they’d be injured) Crazy case.
If it was not a thief then you’re saying it was her? What is your theory? Mental Break, Brain Tumor, severe depression/Suicidal? What was in her head to make her drive into a bridge at 70mph and kill herself?
Pat was innocent.
Poor guy isn’t here to defend himself. His wife was murdered.
Sadly I have to conclude that Pat succeeded in pulling the wool over everyone’s eyes. He seems to have some connection to law enforcement as he knew that pushing to have the apparent accidental death reclassified as undetermined was the best way to guarantee that the police would ignore the case. Whenever the family disagrees with an official determination of suicide or accident, the police will go out of their way to ignore any new evidence.
Burglars would not have turned on a clothing iron, started filling a pool, and drawn a bath. I cannot see Aileen leaving a hot iron running while taking a bath. Burglars upon finding a hot iron on the first floor would have bolted before being spotted. If they wanted to silence a witness to a burglary, escalating to murder would make little sense but setting a body on fire on the side of a road (they had a gas canister with them???) is not how they’d discreetly dispose of someone.
Pat has been dead since 2013 and there’s been no break in the case. The ones they should put on trial are whoever failed to investigate Pat. The impudent bastard went on national TV and basically bragged about killing this woman.
There are so many overt flaws in your purported knowledge that your conclusive findings are obscene.
Shame on everyone who thinks it was Pat. He didn’t do it and y’all have no proof.
She was killed by someone else.
No way it was Pat! He did everything he could to keep this case in the media. I have to believe robbery gone wrong. Multiple robberies in their neighborhood around the time of the crime. She was multitasking with taking a bath, on the phone, filling the pool. Why would a lady who wanted to harm herself do all of these things?
And that multitasking is hard to ignore. It’s makes me wonder if she was looking for her purse when she crashed.
Just watched this episode 2021
I believe it was the husband pat
And someone close to him
Even he admits he thinks the same thing…
that There where 2 individuals
He even staged the whole thing
He left the church flyer to throw off
Police even tho they rulled it as an accident
He’s acting like he knows too much..
I’m good at seeing people’s eyes and there intentions
I believe both murderers where on the episode that aired
The guy practically says the only way that the people will get caught is they can’t keep their mouth shut… sounds like a cover up in Itself… leaving subtle clues
Doing the episode practically eliminated them as suspects…
I can 100% guarantee Pat Conway was the one of the murderes
And I hope he reads this and knows
He will get caught sooner or later
I dont know his intentions or any evidence but I just have a feeling it was him 100%
Based on the episode and how fishy it was he found the house like that and happened to be gone
And they also don’t mention his alliby at all and I find that weird because 80% of spouse murders are the other partner
Especially in small towns
Let’s bring pat down
He’s a murderer
Wouldn’t surprise me if she was hushed
Because maybe she found out about maybe her kids where getting molested
And sadly that’s a higher percentage than a freak accident
Pat is dead since 2013.
To me it really seems like she turned on the iron, drew a bath, and a pool guy or contractor broke in or she saw something she wasn’t supposed to. She picked up the phone to call her husband or 911 perhaps but they saw her so she ran to her car without grabbing her purse or anything to try to get away. Maybe they got in a vehicle and chased her and she went down random back roads to try to lose them but crashed into the bridge. They probably came up and killed her if she wasn’t knocked out already from the impact, and they opened her door to pour an accelerant on her (and the church letter flew out) and they lit her and the car on fire and drove away. This is the scenario I’m imagining. I’m sure they’ve investigated all leads they could think of it just sucks when there’s no evidence to go off of or not enough to charge someone. Hope there is a break someday.
Firstly God Bless The Family
Secondly, I totally understand the multitasking, I myself do it. However, something that has always bothered me about this case is, the phone being off the hook. Why has nothing about an investigation been said of the last call? I know they’re were records in the 80’s!!
I Pray that the person responsible, or those who may know something for this horrific act will want to rid this Sin of their cauntionce before leaving this world!!
Firstly God Bless The Family
Secondly, I totally understand the multitasking, I myself do it. However, something that has always bothered me about this case is, the phone being off the hook. Why has nothing about an investigation been said of the last call? I know they’re were records in the 80’s!!
Mabye she was hated by someone for some reason. I mean money and stuff like that, or she knew something she souldn’t have known. Someone visits her in her house and they decide to talk in the car, which explains no damage in the house and all the things left running. Then she gets killed in the car. The murderer drives the car to someplace far away and burns it, the body inside and mabye some evidence like documents or checks.
They did not have as many surveillance cameras back then. But that area is surrounded by the military. They would of had footage of someone running away from the crime scene. There where no other cars. So signs of forced entry. The evidence does not support a robbery caught in progress. Unaccounted for jewelry is just one item. Why steal only that? You would have to know where it was. Her purse would have been a better item to take.
If she had run a bath and was ironing, she may have been in her under things or even nude (getting ready to take a bath and ironing the clothes she was planning to put on). If someone came upon her, whether it be a thief, a contractor, the person filling the pool, or anyone else-then they may have decided they wanted her. They could have then taken by force in her car, raped her somewhere out in the country, and then made her crash and then burned her. You don’t need to burn someone to kill them, so they chose to burn her for a reason. It wasn’t to hide her identity, because the car was there. My guess, is they were burning evidence. By burning her body, you could be burning evidence of rape, especially back then. They may have also been trying to burn it so that their fingerprints could not be found. It could have been more than one person and the second person could have followed with their own vehicle, which would have explained a fast getaway.
I watched this episode of Unsolved Mysteries for the first time very recently (July 2020). I was five years old, in kindergarten, when it happened. I am now 39. The story sounded vaguely familiar to me as I remember a woman dying in a fiery auto accident and wrecking the bridge in doing so. Ironically enough, I lived one mile from this bridge growing up. After searching internet and talking to my folks, this incident was one and the same. I couldn’t believe this event was an episodes of the show. Anyone wanting to know the actual location of the bridge, GPS coordinates are as follows:
It sits over Big Beaver Creek on NE Cache Road, slightly East of the NE 180th Street T-intersection, 15 miles East of Lawton. The bridge was a simple wooden bridge (gravel/dirt road covered) with metal guard rails on each side roughly 10 feet height. The car impacted on the south side guard rail, so the car was traveling eastbound at the time of impact. The bridge was left wrecked and mangled for several years (at least 10 years). They finally replaced it with a much larger concrete style bridge, around the time I started driving, so maybe 1997 or 1998.
It is an extremely rural area. The farmer who witnessed the smoke lived about 1/4 mile away to the East up on hill. The creek was in a lower area just west of his farm. No other houses or building structures were in the immediate area. Lots of trees and unmaintained weeds and grass along both sides of the road.
Just wanted to provide some geographic details being from the exact area.
Do you reckon Pat knew anything?
It was not a covered up crime scene. There where too many traces of her.
I think that one of the contractors was there to do whatever, including filling the pool, I think she was going about her business like ironing taking a bath and he needed to use the bathroom, or who knows maybe she was having an affair with him? Who knows but the point is whoever was filling the pool would explain why that was still on and it would explain the tub and ironing board, he may have tried to make a move on her when he came in on her and she refused, he knew she would tell her husband and he would be fired and shamed, so he panicked and killed her right there, did they check for anything near the gas pedal to see if something was used to accelerate the vehicle? I think the pool guy did it, it ties it all together!!!
If she was killed there that would explain a lot of water being used. But why take your time cleaning and being neat only to be in a hurry and explosive? That would require a multitasking maniac. And unfortunately only she fits that description.
After reading it and seeing the documentery on unsloved, it appears to me that it was staged. Because there was break ins. If they get caught they get hit with murder. So, Im thinking its an affair if there was no money missing or other valuebles.
Hi, sorry for your loss. Seporating the issues. One can’t fill a tub and a pool at the same time, nor iron at the same time. So if it was a group of teens that were taking a bath, swimming et cetera and “She” walked in and or they didn’t know she was there and she hid. That would explain the odd driving on an odd road. As well, taking note that the at least three people would have serious injuries, and or might have left other items in the woods hiding out. And as well and or, they could be seperate and “he” could have walked into a group of teens taking a bath, ironing, swimming. Do the other break ins have simular variables? What about an affair?
So you think a group of teenagers broke in to take a bath?
Saw Aileen case again on Pluto tv and I am left we so many questions. I truly believe Aileen left the house willingly and crashed her car. I believe that the way the car crashed engulfed the car in flames. I believe she slammed on the breaks to avoid a dear and crashed. The farmer I believe would’ve seen a car chase. He found Aileen car in flames. So it just had happened, he didn’t hear anyone or see anyone. I can’t explain where she was going or why? I keep thinking suicide……
She would not have left her glasses and driver’s license and purse had she not been forced to leave her home.
She would not have left the phone off the hook or water running in the backyard.
She was taken from her home.
So as of December 13, 2019 as I just watched this episode I had never heard of this crime. I was born in 76 and live in Duncan just about 25-30 minutes from Lawton. How tragic that it’s not been solved. Doesn’t seem there was much information or even evidence to go on. So sorry for the families. 🙁
Aileens case has me perplexed. I sure do wish the new Netflix series would shine some light on this case.
Can anyone from Aileen’s or Pat’s family speak to the location of the bridge?
The bridge looks a lot different than it did in the episode, as it was replaced with a cement bridge. The road is between Lawton and Duncan. There’s a gas station you turn at and the bridge is about 2-3 miles down that road.
jerrie d morales
I don’t think it is usual to put the hose in the pool in april to start filling up or topping it off-that is normal. filling a tub and ironing your clothes to get ready-that is pretty normal. the mother of several children-multitasking is what it is all about. having a brain bleed or cva or some sort of health issue would make some sense too. i’m from lawton and all of this sounds normal except when it gets to the part of the car burning so badly. i could even see that maybe she felt short of breath and felt like she needed more air she rolled down her car window which allowed the church bulletin to fly out. They proved it would have taken alot for the car to burn and melt the way it did. of course they don’t tell us the make, model, year of the car. The ages of the children? did they do an autopsy? what neighborhood was the home located in? what state was the home in? more than likely a robbery gone wrong.
I think it was probably a contractor or subcontractor
jerrie d morales
I wonder what the autopsy said? I guess it might have been inconclusive if the lung tissue was completely destroyed.
Too many activities going on. You can’t iron, while bathing and turn off a overflowing hose if needed. Staged all. A woman never leaves her purse or glasses behind and nobody goes 60 miles an hour on a dirt covered bridge. Gasoline car fire added to all this is Murder. Who has the motive? Burglary unlikely. Robbery plays no logic in the final set up. How long did hubby know his current wife at time of death? Insurance payout? People who do these dastardly things have family who swears they couldn’t do such a thing. But it’s a mystery as long as it remains uninvestigated.
I don’t think she was ironing and taking a bath. I think she was running a tub while she ironed her clothes. they were married along time. They raised a large well adjusted family from what I remember and he ran for the board of education. they owned a business in lawton.
I have racked my brain on this for years. I can only hope they will not forget this case.
i think the things in the house were decoys. in what scenario do you have a bath full of water at the same time as a live clothes iron as well as pour water in the pool?
they are all things you’d do to do indicate someone was removed from their home in the middle of something. yet you can’t have all three together at the same time. with the phone as well that makes four ‘in the middle of stuff’ activities.
Hoping for Justice
This might be a silly question but since the case has still gone unsolved and there was at the time a reward offered- couldn’t maybe using the money to get media attention or private investigatons or something? I know as more time goes on a case becomes harder to solve when witnesses start to pass or evidence becomes missing or destroyed. Are there ANY new updates????
I worked as a sub contractor for the Conway’s when this happened! You will never convince me Pat had anything to do with this.
The Conway’s had many contractors working with them, and many of them did work in their home. I believe it’s possible one off those contractors or their helpers came to rob their house not expecting Mrs. Conway to be there. She probably recognized who ever it was and they had to get “rid” of her. They had to take her out to the country to make it look like an accident. As far as someone following her, the police dept. or the flooring company was just a few minutes away, why would she drive way out in the middle of nowhere? They lived in the center of town? Possibly a disgruntled contractor? RIP Mr and Mrs Conway
I feel like whoever killed her must have known her. It seems like she peacefully got into that car. Even if she walked in on a burglary or anything, there would have been some sort of a struggle or more evidence of a burglary happening. I wouldn’t be surprised if the husband or a family member or a close friend staged everything. To have the phone off the hook, bath drawn, iron on, and water in pool, etc. doesn’t necessarily mean she was doing all these things before she left the house. Maybe someone made it look like she was doing these things before she left. Her husband was the only one who came home and claimed he found all these things. Yes i understand if the husband had anything to do with it, why would he ‘willingly’ give up evidence. But when you reread the case…there isn’t much evidence to go off of, except the fact that the car was doused in gasoline. No other significant pieces of evidence have surfaced.
So many questions…where was everyone else on this Saturday…why top off a pool in April…was anything stolen/missing from home…why drive 15 miles for help…was the bridge on a road that dead ended into another street and she couldn’t see it soon enough to adequately break…how long did it burn…couldnt have burned long if bubbles still in the tub and pool not topped off…was DNA ever done…were the skid marks already there/or maybe from car chasing her?
April 29, 1986 was a Tuesday so the kids were at school which is about a block away from the Conway home (Pat worked at Lawton High for some time while he owned their flooring company). Pat was at work according to the family.
We lived in Tennessee and we opened our swimming up in March. Therefore, April doesn’t surprise me.
Sorry for your loss. What is the name amd location of the bridge where she was found?? If I may ask??
I would ask, where were her keys to the car before she left? I think went out and turned on the hose to the pool to fill it. Went back inside and drew a bath. Set up her ironing board and iron. Then someone came to her front door. Since there were no signs of forced entry or any signs that anyone attempted to enter the residence, I believe that she must have known the person that was there. They could have been calling to her, “Aileen, open this door and come out here!” At that time she could have gone into the bathroom and took the phone off the hook then said, “I’m calling the police!” In an attempt to scare whoever it was away. When they wouldn’t go away, she grabbed her keys and went out the patio door and got into her vehicle. They must have saw her and chased her. They chased her 15 miles away from her home and she attempted to lose them by going down a road she had never been down. This would explain why she lost control of her car and was going 50-60 miles per hour. At such a high rate of speed and not knowing what was ahead, she would not have foreseen the bridge ahead and when she saw it, she probably hit her break attempting to make the curve in the road and go over the bridge, but because dirt can be unpredictable and slippery, she lost control of her car and slammed into the bridge. Now, whoever was following her took advantage of the fact that she was either injured or unconscious and took the gas cap off and siphoned the gas out of her tank, dousing her before lighting it with either a match, or more likely a lighter, if they used a lighter they may have wanted to use the church bulletin to ignite the flames, but maybe found something else tossing it aside, only to have it be carried by the wind to another location near the crash sight. Now the police who arrive on the scene determine almost immediately that this is an accident, and not thinking it’s a homicide commence to taint the crime scene. They aren’t looking for footprints, only tire marks and maybe by then the footprints of the officers are now merged with the footprints of others and being a dirt road, footprints can be easily erased, so can tire marks. Now the whole idea of murder/kidnapping is ridiculous. Most robbers knock on your door or ring your doorbell to see if you are home first. They usually don’t bring weapons with them, because all they are interested in is getting the loot and getting out. People at home are ignored houses. They usually stake out their targeted house and know the schedule of the people who live there and know if they are home or not and when they will be back, so they don’t get caught. Also, to see if they have dogs or security systems. They want the easiest possible in and out as fast as they can scenario. That is probably why her house was not a target of burglars that were in the area, because possibly they had already staked out that home and decided that it wouldn’t be easy with someone at home most of the time and couldn’t risk it if she went on an errand, not knowing when she’d be back. Suicide isn’t plausible here either, there is no indication that she was depressed. The patio door is the biggest clue. The second is no signs of forced entry or signs that anyone tried to force entry. The fact that she left her purse with her drivers license and her glasses is another clue. Shows she left in a hurry. IF you were going to an emergency, would you leave out your back door? No you’d go out the front door. Would you leave your home unlocked? No you’d lock it up tight, especially if you knew that there were burglars in the area.
You have raised a very plausible scenario.
My condolences, Joseph, on the loss of your Papaw as well.
I’m curious about the results of the investigation into the “reports of burglaries in the weeks and months preceding this situation.” (Paul Renfrow, OBI)
Were any perpetrators of the burglaries identified as possible suspects?
So sorry for your loss, and in such a awful way.
The case is going to have to be looked at by cold case detectives or a larger organization with access to much more crime solving methods.
The possibility exists that
A: she was topping off the pool, which can take over an hour;
B: she ran a bath, again that takes several minutes;
C: knowing it will only take a few minutes to iron the shirt ( or whatever) she took the phone off the hook, knowing she was fixing to get in the tub. (Just 10 minutes of peace in the tub, PLEASE!)
Just as she was finishing her ironing, she is startled, interrupted, or heard a noise in another part of the house, forgetting to turn the iron off.
Seems like she confronted whomever and her being there threw their whole burglary plan out the window, so it turns into a kidnapping/murder.
They forced her into her car, drove her where they forced the accelerator to stay down, large rock perhaps? After it crashed, they doused it with gas.
Cannot believe they haven’t found who did it!!! They CANNOT be THAT smart!!!!!
She could of jacked up the water and electricity bills. That would be a possible motive for someone that had nothing to do with it. She was just confused.
I think it was the husband, but he is dead now.
If that had been the husband he would not have run to the police with the pieces of evidence he had found. It doesn’t make any sense. He would have been happy case was closed as an accident.
I live in Lawton, OK, where she was from. There are so many theories about her case here: Burglary gone wrong, Pat Conway and his alleged mistress doing the crime, the family being involved, suicide. Just so many theories. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about this case. Sadly, Pat Conway passed away last year. I’m not optimistic about this case ever finding its way to being solved. There’s not enough of the right people interested in resurrecting this case. No justice for Aileen. No justice at all.
If Pat had anything to do with it he would have kept his mouth shut and let people believe it was a car accident. He’s the one that got the investigation back open.
I was hoping for an update to this case. Feel bad for the family left behind without answers.
Shame on the ones who think my Uncle Patt Conway would do such a thing he was hurt to the day he passed away about this. And his now wife my aunt is still to this day investigationg it as well as most of our family.
Pat Conway is my husband’s cousin on his mom’s side. Don’t let people who don’t know the truth bother you.
There will be justice some way some how.
K this hole case is odd but thats cuz ur taking in todays way of living not 1986 no one at that would be filling a pool up to cold an wet so that is staged seen to look like she lost her mind next u c that bathtub that has calgone take me way wrighten all over it an no female with take a phone in the bathroom where she going to relax at that time so that is a staged seen also so only thing make sense is the ironing clothing for work so…. next the hole car thing only one thing there she was dead before car accident thats y the fire
Ever heard of punctuation? Learn to use it!
u sound like a daryl….
Im from Lawton and just saw the episode on TV. That is so crazy that they never found the person responsible.
Aileen was my great grandmother. Still to this day it is a mystery as to what actually took place that day. My grandfather didn’t do this and there was no mistress. I wish that her case would have been solved before papaw passed but sadly it remains unsolved.
Sorry Joseph for your Great Grandmother. I just again watched this episode of Unsolved Mysteries and thought I’d look it up to see if it has been solved. Sorry to hear that it has not. I hope they catch the murderers responsible someday.
I just was watching Robert Stacks Unsolved Mysteries (March 2018).
I looked it up to see if it had been solved. I feel sorry for the husband and I see now he passed.
A long time to live not knowing! How sad!!
I doubt anyone will spend the money nor the time to figure it out neither!
I’m so sorry for your loss years ago. I was about 10 years old when the case was aired on Unsolved Mysteries and I thought about it so many times. If I was in your position, I would never rest until the case is solved. To the Conway family, please be brave and never give up on hope. God be with you Joseph.
My husband’s a cousin of the family up until Pat passed his Aunt and parents often went to breakfast with Pat after Mass. My husband was 4 when it happened.
The weirdest part of this is the evidence, though. Who takes a bath while a hose is running AND the iron is on? No one does that many things at once.
That’s just how my grandmother was
Do you own a pool?
If she was filling the pool/topping off the pool it can take a long time. I have a small above ground pool and it takes at least 30 minutes to fill in just an inch of depth. An in ground pool like that would take more than a hour. She likely filled the bath tub and turned the iron on. Ironing a shirt or two takes 10 minutes. That gives the bath water time to cool a bit before getting in. At the moment I have the washing machine going, my sink is filling with hot water, I’m folding laundry, and I have a pot of sauce on the stove. People can do multiple things at once.
I’m a multi-taskerI easily sounds like me – start filling swimming pool, drawing bathtub, did some quick ironing.
What a horrifying way for someone to die. Whoever committed that crime is heartless, so inhumane, no regards to human life. So sad, it seems this case will not be solve too many unanswered questions and theories nothing much to go on. Rest in peace Aileen
I lived out in the area of this crash. I have been to the crash sight. And have hoped all these years that this would be solved. I check this sight from time to time, always hoping to see there has been some new information. Has a psychic ever been taken to this bridge? It would be worth a try.
Where exactly is that bridge? I live in Lawton myself and I’m trying to find out.
Live in Lawton myself & wondering where exactly is this bridge?