My Remarkable Not-So-Cute Dog Story by Kevin O’Brien

My first dog, Mickey, won a bunch of awards at dog shows, but what makes her really unique is her remote connection to the most famous murder of the twentieth century.

I’m the youngest of six kids, and in October, 1963, we moved into a rather stately looking house in Glencoe—on Chicago’s North Shore. From the previous owners, the Kleins, we inherited a dining room set, a big custom-made sofa, and their miniature German Schnauzer, Mickey. Actually, Mickey’s real name was Machenz Marlene (or something fancy and pretentious like that), and she’d already won a ton of Best in Show ribbons when we got her.  This distinction was kind of lost on us, because none of us were big dog show enthusiasts.  Mickey did all the normal things dogs did: sat, jumped, rolled over and barked on cue—especially if a Milk Bone came with the command. She also went berserk whenever someone approached our front door.

On the evening of November 22, 1963, Mickey went into her berserk routine, because someone was at our front door.  It was the police.  A cop car and a second, unmarked car had pulled into our driveway.  The police were looking for Mr. Klein, who owned a huge sporting goods store in Chicago. Klein’s Sporting Goods is where “A. Hidell” bought—via mail order—the Italian carbine rifle used to assassinate President Kennedy.

My dad gave the Officer Mr. Klein’s new address, and all of us—still reeling from the assassination—were a astounded by the visit from the police.

Klein’s Sporting Goods is mentioned several times in The Warren Commission Report, and the mail order signed by ‘A. Hidell” (Lee Harvey Oswald) is on display at the 6th Floor Book Depository Assassination Museum in Dallas.

As for Mickey, we held onto her collar, her leash and her many ribbons long after she died in 1967.

Whenever someone tells me about how remarkable their pooch is, it’s tough to keep quiet and nod pleasantly.

I want to tell them, “Well, my first dog has a pretty unique distinction…”

Once You Let Them In

The lights are on at the Singleton vacation home on Lopez Island, Washington, illuminating the horror within. Scott Singleton, former NFL star turned television evangelist, lies dead. The bodies of his wife and four of their five children are found on the second floor, bound, gagged, and stabbed repeatedly. The oldest daughter was shot downstairs. And the police’s main suspect—the property caretaker—has disappeared.

They Will Never

In her secluded vineyard home two hours away, Laura Gretchell is on edge. Her husband is out of town on business, and the children are understandably shaken. Laura tries to tell herself there’s no reason to fear. Then the door handle rattles, and the real terror begins.

Let You Go

They’re in her house, holding her children hostage, and Laura has only one option: do exactly what the intruders say. But as Laura races to find the information they seek, she realizes that the enemies within her own home are only part of the nightmare. Because someone wants to keep the truth hidden at any cost, no matter how many more must die . . .

Praise for Kevin O’Brien’s You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone

“The suspense builds from page one and ends with a climax you won’t see coming.” —Suspense Magazine