Only the Deseret Morning News has had any worthwhile content related to the Lori Hacking case this weekend. I've included four stories, listed by the dates they appeared in the online edition.
This is a pretty lengthy post. Usually I excerpt longer stories, but in this case I've included the entire content (with many photos) from two stories. Please be patient while the page loads if you decide to continue reading.
Sat 08/07/04: Statement from Eraldo Soares
Lori Hacking's father, Eraldo Soares, issued the following statement Friday:I feel it appropriate now to personally express my gratitude to the thousands of volunteers, the U-Search organization, local and national media, and government officials in Salt Lake City who have spent countless hours assisting in the work of searching for Lori. In particular, I wish to thank the Salt Lake Police Department, Salt Lake County landfill employees and all others who continue the horrible and unpleasant task of searching for my daughter's remains at the Salt Lake County landfill. Their work is important in securing a proper burial for Lori as well as ensuring justice is served against the perpetrator of the heinous crime.
Despite the fact that Lori has yet to be found, I strongly believe that all the work done thus far by the professionals and volunteers alike helped create an environment wherein essential facts and clues as to Lori's' whereabouts were brought to light. Your work was not in vain.
As the facts about my little girl's death emerge, I am outraged. The innumerable lies she was told by her husband for years on end were selfish and shameful. The cowardly way in which she and her baby were brutally murdered in cold blood while she slept is despicable. The gutless attempt at covering up this monstrous act is appalling. It is difficult to imagine a more disrespectful way of disposing of her remains. No family should have to lose a daughter and sister this way.
Our criminal justice system in this great country was created to punish perpetrators of such odious acts. I am hopeful and confident that the authorities in Salt Lake will seek and accomplish appropriate justice.
I do not seek vengeance, simply justice and a proper burial for my little girl. My heartfelt thanks again goes out to all those who have helped in Lori's search and to the experts that continue the work of finding Lori.
Sat 08/07/04: Unabomber's brother feels for the Hackings
One of the images inscribed on David Kaczynski's heart is of his brother, Ted, then about 10 years old, hammering a nail into the screen back door and affixing it with a thread and an empty wooden spool.
David Kaczynski"He made me a makeshift handle, my brother, the Unabomber," said David Kaczynski, who at the time was younger than 3 years old and too small to reach the existing door handle.
"He loved me. He cared about me, and there was a goodness in him, however twisted he later became," said Kaczynski, who spoke to the Deseret Morning News Friday about his brother and the Mark Hacking case.
Warm memories of their Chicago childhood, however, didn't prevent David Kaczynski from going to federal authorities when he realized that his older brother might be responsible for 18 years of terror with bombings, killings and maimings.
"I think the struggle for me was in the realization of the impact of what I might or might not do," Kaczynski told the Morning News.
Telling police could either save the lives of the innocent—or perhaps sentence his brother to die. In the end, Ted Kaczynski, who suffers from schizophrenia, pleaded guilty to his crimes in 1998 and now serves a life sentence in a 10-foot by 12-foot federal prison cell.
Sun 08/08/04: The Deseret Morning News offers two "Portraits of Sorrow" articles, one each for Lori and Mark Hacking. Lori's article begins with a preface:
Three weeks ago Lori Hacking was reported missing by her husband, Mark. He told police she had gone for an early-morning jog in Memory Grove. Her car was still there.
Mark Hacking appeared frantic that day. He called friends, family and Lori's co-workers. At a hurried news conference that afternoon, he appealed for volunteer searchers. They came in droves.
Bride Lori Hacking smiles with her mother, Thelma Soares. Her parents, who divorced when Lori was in fifth grade, were both elated at her marriage to MarkBut as the days passed, Mark Hacking's story unraveled. As it turned out, he had lied about graduating from the University of Utah. He had lied about his acceptance to medical school in North Carolina. He followed up his initial 10:07 a.m. call to police with a 10:23 a.m. purchase of a new mattress. By 10:46 a.m., he was on the line a second time to police, asking again for help.
Late that night, he was admitted to the psychiatric ward.
Two weeks later Mark Hacking, 28, was arrested and booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of criminal homicide. Police say Hacking killed his 27-year-old, possibly pregnant wife as she slept and then dumped her body in a trash bin.
On Monday prosecutors are expected to file murder charges against Mark Hacking.
Lori Hacking's body, for which police and trained dogs continued to search last night and early today in the county landfill, has not yet been found.
In this special report by Lucinda Dillon Kinkead, with additional reporting by Jennifer Dobner and Leigh Dethman, friends and family recount the lives of Lori and Mark Hacking, as children growing up in Utah County and as a couple—to all outward appearances, a happy one.
The two articles appear in their entirety below.
She is the girl we all know now as just Lori. A 5-foot-3 little bit of a thing with hair and heart twice her stature.
She's gone now, we are told.
Her friends, family and those in Utah who've grown to love her through newspapers and television now perpetually wait for the girl with near-perfect attendance and punctuality. She is gone, investigators believe, because of her husband Mark Hacking, the man she chose over several others.
"I feel so angry at Mark. Like how could he do this to my friend and her baby? How could he do this to Thelma? There were so many people that loved him and trusted him. He had everything."—Holly Thomas, lifelong friend of Lori Hacking
Most importantly, Mark Hacking, who is accused of killing his wife while she slept, had Lori.
Bride Lori Hacking kisses her father, Eraldo SoaresThe hazel-eyed beauty was a sophomore at Orem High School when she met Mark during a trip with friends to Lake Powell. Mark burned his hands in the bonfire that night and Lori stayed up all night to help him.
"I met a boy," Lori told her mom during a phone call later. "His name is Mark."
And so it was. That was the beginning. And this is the story of a fiercely loyal and protective young woman who by all appearances protected her husband until the day she disappeared, July 19.
It's easy to see why Lori so fiercely guarded her family. Most of the time, it was just Lori and her mom, Thelma, when she was growing up. The family lived in California early on, but Thelma and her daughter moved to Utah after she and Eraldo Soares divorced when Lori was in the fifth grade and her elder brother Paul was in his teens. Thelma was Lori's grounding pole.
Lori palled around with Holly and Rebecca Carroll through high school, lounging in Lori's big bedroom on her green-and-white bedspread, dishing about boys and girl stuff in the early years then bombing around Orem in the blue VW bug Lori's dad bought her for her 16th birthday.
Lori and Rebecca got their first job together—as wash girls at the Orem Car Wash. And it was at this time that Lori honed the principles she carried through life.
"Lori was always good with money. She always worked. She always had money, and she knew what she wanted," Carroll says. "She wanted to be married. She wanted to have a career. And she wanted to have a family when the time was right."
Heidi Gregory, now 27, wasn't sure about her curly haired roommate when the two were assigned to the LaSal dormitories at Weber State University in 1995.
Lori as a babyLori Soares was sarcastic and feisty. And you always knew where you stood with her. She wasn't a brat, not a snot, Gregory says. "That was just Lori. She was hilariously blunt. It was like, 'Yeah, sure, we'll be friends, but on my terms.' "
Heidi, Lori and the group of girls at Weber had a blast, dancing in the halls and being goofy. They loved the Olive Garden restaurant and ice cream and shakes from Jake's Over the Top in Ogden.
And, man, could that little spitfire go. Heidi and Lori traveled: Savannah, Atlanta, New York. One year they hopped a red-eye from Salt Lake City to New York City at midnight on the morning of New Year's Eve. They spent all day walking up and down the streets of Manhattan, landed at Times Square for the evening party, then took another all-night flight back home.
"It was just a whirlwind. We didn't even get a hotel room," Gregory said. "She was the only person I met who could keep up with me."
Meanwhile, Mark and Lori had continued dating on and off in high school, then more exclusively in college. Lori moved to Salt Lake City to study management at the University of Utah. She graduated with a bachelor of science degree in management and additional honors as a member of Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society, an award given to those in the top tenth of their graduating class.
Lori Soares holds a stuffed animal in a portrait taken as a little girlA few months earlier, in August 1999, she and Mark had married in the Bountiful Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Her parents were elated. Her father, Eraldo Soares of Fullerton, Calif., said at the time he was "110 percent behind the marriage." Mark was everything he'd hoped for in a son-in-law.
"Now, she had lots of choices," he said. "But she loved Mark."
No one, it seems, saw trouble brewing—and all say Lori probably wouldn't have told if there was.
She was always a deeply private person.
The first day they met, Heidi Gregory saw a picture of Lori and Thelma Soares. "You don't look a bit like your mom," Heidi said. "I know," Lori replied. It was weeks before Lori told her new friend she'd been adopted as an infant.
And a year later, when Mark Hacking was sent home early from his LDS mission to Winnipeg, Canada, Lori also had very little to say about the circumstances.
Mark told her he had been caught up in the discipline for the improprieties of his fellow missionaries. But it now appears Mark himself was involved in a relationship with a young woman in Canada.
"She was bugged by it because she didn't think he'd given her a straight answer," Gregory said. "I'm sure she dealt with it with him later, but I never knew of it."
Lori never spoke to her close circle of friends about any of Mark's behaviors—smoking, drinking and lying about school graduation and medical school acceptance—now so closely scrutinized.
"Lori wouldn't want anyone to know if her marriage was bad—if it was," Gregory said, echoing similar comments from other friends. "She was very proud that way."
What she knew
Holly Thomas, left, and Lori Soares in a photo from their high school daysThis is the dichotomy of this young woman's personality.
One after another, her friends talked about her traits: Smart about money. Smart about school. Smart about her decisions. Driven. Thrifty. Actively involved in her husband's life.
So, didn't she smell smoke if her husband had taken up a cigarette habit?
Didn't she know he wasn't going to classes?
"He definitely went to great lengths to lie to her," said Christy Goodri, a friend of the couple from their LDS ward.
The two would meet on campus between his classes and have lunch. Mark carried around a backpack with books. He even had his mother-in-law proofread term papers before he supposedly submitted them to his professors.
And denial may have protected her from seeing the destruction of a lifetime of dreams and goals, said Lou Bertram, a former psychological profile coordinator for the FBI.
"The cover-ups that he was doing. . . , she was catching on, but when you have vices like he did and then you have to go to church on Sunday, that's tough, too," Bertram said.
Many times wives accept certain behavior if they think their spouses have made a mistake but are moving on and correcting that behavior, Bertram said.
"Lori saw this great guy who was going places, and she chose to ignore some things," he said. "Maybe she thought he would straighten out. If she found out about the medical school, maybe she thought they would work it out. I think she was willing to live through it, but Mark reached the boiling point and he just exploded."
Whatever Mark's vices, whatever darkness and deceit he may have been wading into, it appears Lori spent her last months happy.
She happily hung out with Goodri. Christy's husband, Matt, was serving in the Iraq war from January 2003 until April 2004, and Lori visited and helped out with the kids often.
"She was such a doll to me. She would come over and hang out with me on nights. She was so cute. She'd say, 'I have no husband either. He is working nights, so let's just hang out.' "
Most people who don't have children don't want to come and hang out with two children, Goodri noted, but Lori would take them out to dinner and the movies. She chased Goodri's children around the theater recently while watching "Cheaper by the Dozen."
"She was a lifesaver at a time I needed one."
Heidi Gregory, left, and Lori Soares were roommates and friends at Weber State UniversityThe two talked about their husbands, their weddings. Lori said hers was perfect.
"I never once heard her say anything bad about him. Usually people complain a little, but not even that," she said. "She definitely thought he was the world, and that she had found Mr. Right."
A month ago, Lori went to dinner with Holly and Rebecca, her high school chums. The three closed down the Porcupine Grill, laughing and chatting. Lori was excited about moving to North Carolina, where Mark was supposed to have enrolled in medical school. She was excited about being a doctor's wife, Carroll said. "And she was really excited for Mark."
The case has been devastating for the close-knit group of folks at the Wells Fargo's investment office on 400 South and Main. Just yesterday, it seems, Lori was there with them, interrupting their indoor golf-putting game on her way to the copier. "Hey Lori, get off the green!" someone would holler.
Then came Monday morning, July 19, when Mark called asking if they'd seen his wife. "We all sprang to action," said Kelly Murdock, one of the first to search for his friend. Lori, who was always on time, was three hours late.
Elizabeth Read, a co-worker, running partner and maybe her closest friend, aches. Four days before she disappeared, Lori called Elizabeth at 10 p.m. She'd just taken a pregnancy test, she told Elizabeth. She and Mark were expecting. "She was so excited."
Mindi Christensen, left, Lori Soares and Heidi GregoryElizabeth was walking Lori through some of these transitions: the going-away party at work, the baby. Lori was going to move in with Elizabeth for a few weeks while her husband became settled in North Carolina.
Elizabeth has given up on interviews, preferring to grieve privately.
"How will it bring Lori back?" she asks someone. "How?"
A memorial service has been scheduled for Lori. On Saturday, Aug. 14, her family and friends will celebrate who she was and ache for what they've lost. What will remain then are dozens of Lori's loved ones who wonder why they didn't notice and how this tragedy could have been prevented.
"Every conversation I've had with Lori goes through my head," Goodri said. "Was there something I missed?"
It was snowing that night in the fall of 2001, a miserable and cold night, and Kara Cottle was waiting for the shuttle bus to get home after her night class.
Brandon Wood and Mark sport missionary attire in 1995. Mark was sent home early from his mission to Canada for disciplinary reasonsFrom under her hood, she saw Mark Hacking in his SUV, the popular student she'd known as a kid in Orem and who'd re-introduced himself in their Evolution of Human Health and Anthropology class at the University of Utah. She wasn't too popular in the old days, wasn't close friends with Hacking, his family or with the kids higher up on the popularity totem pole.
"Hey, Kara, get in!" Hacking said as he rolled to a stop.
The two stayed acquainted through the term. Hacking was a workhorse, never missed class and gave Kara a lift home most nights.
They spent time in the car talking about their spouses, school and their plans for the future. Hacking was respectful and nice. He talked about how much he adored his wife, how he was majoring in psychology and planning on medical school.
The last time she saw him, at the end of that semester, he pulled to a stop in her parking lot.
"I wish you all the best with everything," Hacking told her. "With school and your family and everything."
The two shook hands. "I hope I see you again," Kara told him. "Maybe at a class reunion."
"I'll look for you," Hacking said.
Mark at Orem High SchoolLast week, Kara Cottle logged on to the Deseret Morning News Web site from an e-mail cafe in Kenya, Africa, where she is doing research on AIDS. There she saw her old friend's picture.
Today the perceived actions of a very different Mark Hacking have left friends, acquaintances and family members desperate for answers to questions that only weeks ago seemed inconceivable.
What kind of person would be able to deceive his spouse, friends and family for so long?
What on earth did he plan to do once he arrived in North Carolina?
And what triggered the 180-degree turn from loving husband to a man police believe killed his wife, Lori?
Mark was a happy kid with big freckles, curly red hair and a personality to match.
He comes from Douglas and Janet Hacking's big, bustling family of seven children: Lance is the oldest, followed by Scott, Tiffany and Sarah. Mark is the fifth child, and Chad and Julie are the two youngest.
Douglas W. Hacking, a beloved Orem pediatrician at the Orem Cherry Tree Office of Utah Valley Pediatrics, went to Brigham Young University in the late 1960s, followed by medical school in Wisconsin and a residency at the Columbus Children's Hospital.
Many years ago, little Mark Hacking gave a talk at the Orem meetinghouse where his family attended services for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
He forgot he was standing on a step stool to reach the microphone, and when he finished speaking, he swung around, stepped forward and tumbled unceremoniously off the dais.
"Then that little redhead poked up from behind the podium with a big grin on his face," longtime friend Brandon Wood remembered. "I still laugh when I think about that."
Mark, left, poses in 1982 with Brandon Wood, third from left, and other boys who grew up on the same street in their Orem neighborhoodWood grew up with Hacking. Their families still live across the street from one another on 60 North in Orem. They played football, went hiking, attended church and took Scouting trips together, while Mark's mother, Janet, shuttled his three sisters to various dance practices.
Mark wasn't a big athlete, but he played a variety of sports for a while. Mostly, his friends say, he liked to make people laugh.
He was interviewed for the school yearbook, and when asked why he chose soccer over other sports, Hacking, then a junior, said, "Because it's bad A."
Mark Hacking seemed to move through life like a lot of other children in the neighborhood, with a few periods of rebellion and a few disappointments, but not much else.
Mark narrowly missed achieving his Eagle Scout award, although he did a lot of the required project, which included painting the bleachers at his high school.
The boy was also humorously accident-prone.
He wore his older brothers' shoes, which were a little too big for him. He'd kick the ball and his shoe would come off, Wood said. People would laugh.
During a Scouting overnight trip once, Hacking rolled into the fire and woke up with soot on his face. The next night, he slept up on a wooden tripod the guys had built, but he still woke up with black soot on his face.
"We couldn't figure it out," Wood said. "Weird, goofy stuff happened to him."
He was accident-prone for sure, and now some people suspect that was an attention-getting pattern that followed him through life.
He burned his hand in the fire at an outing to Lake Powell, where Lori tended to him and nursed him through the night. He fell from a roof, suffering head and back injuries.
And now, almost 10 years later, many people look back to an experience on his LDS mission that may have been a turning point for Mark Hacking—a time when he tasted freedom outside of his Orem neighborhood and lied to downplay the seriousness of what had happened.
Mark's booking mugshot at the Salt Lake County Jail on MondayBack then, people said the same thing they are saying today—that when they found out what happened, they were totally shocked by what they were learning of "Elder Hacking's" behavior.
By most accounts, Hacking had a relationship with a young woman on his mission and was sent home 11 months early from his mission to Winnipeg, Canada.
Hacking was Travis Webb's district leader in the mission field in 1995. "I was very surprised when he ended up being sent home, and when I found out later (what had happened), that was what blew me away."
Later there were rumors that Hacking and other missionaries had dated girls throughout their missions, staying at their apartment watching movies. One of the girls who another missionary dated became pregnant.
Although Hacking and Lori Soares had been dating on and off in high school, Webb said he never heard Hacking talk about a girl back home.
Now Webb is one of thousands wondering what happened to make Hacking "snap," as his family has said may have happened.
"I think he got a taste of freedom and did a little bit of lying with the girlfriend up there and maybe came home and had the pressure of going back and getting into regular life," Webb said.
"I think he had to make up some lies to tell his family as to why he came home early, and lying became easier and easier to him because he was getting out of things."
Despite all outward appearances of peace and harmony in the marriage, Mark's parents worried about how their fifth child held in his emotions. Janet Hacking told People magazine, "He was outgoing with other people, yet inward with his own feelings. It seemed easy for him to establish a pattern of not explaining himself or revealing where he was."
Doug Hacking told police on the day Lori first went missing that he was not aware of any marital problems, but "he also indicated that if there were any, he doubted Mark would tell him," according to a Salt Lake police report.
A darker side
In recent years, Mark developed some increasingly worrisome habits. Smoking for one—behavior in direct opposition to his beliefs as a member of the LDS Church. Partying. Lying.
His appearance changed, too.
Mark is seen on security video at Maverik the night before he reported Lori missingHe shaved his head in the past couple of years and grew a goatee popular with twentysomething college students. When police searched Lori and Mark Hacking's apartment on July 19, they took for evidence a shirt that read: "West Seattle Acid Party."
He had some other peculiarities that now seem questionable.
He told clerks at a convenience store where he hung out that he was a therapist.
And although staffers at the University of Utah's Neuropsychiatric Institute said privately Mark was a great employee, they acknowledged he and a colleague were known by the names of two "Saturday Night Live" characters, Hans and Franz, a pair of narcissistic bodybuilders.
"I referred to him as Franz since the first week," said Ginger Phillips, a patient at the psychiatric center under Hacking. "It was some little joke he had."
Phillips said the other half of the Hans and Franz combo was the male head nurse. She said getting Hacking to tell anyone his real name was very difficult.
For five years, Hacking worked at the hospital, most recently as a psychiatric technician, a position similar to a nurse's aide, with starting pay about $8 an hour.
He interacted regularly with patients and even supervised some activities.
But mostly, people remember Mark as a fun-loving, good person.
He was an LDS Church nursery leader, where he chased kids around the church, making faces and tickling them.
He would help anyone who needed it. Friends joked he couldn't pass by a stranded motorist without offering to help.
'Emotions and questions'
Another one of the Orem neighborhood boys was Ross Williams, Mark's best friend since they were young.
A weepy Mark speaks to reporters the day Lori went missingThey did everything together. Mark's dad was a Boy Scout leader. Williams said he is closer to Mark than he is to his own family. It was Williams, now a probation officer for the state's Adult Parole and Probation Department, who introduced Mark and Lori on that trip to Lake Powell in high school.
Now he's faced with the possibility of visiting his friend in prison.
"Most definitely he's still my best friend," he said. But now he's the best friend who is in jail because police believe he killed his wife. "There are most definitively a whole lot of emotions and questions for me now."
Mark Hacking never sought counseling from his LDS bishop for anything, including mental problems, marital problems or drugs, said Barry Packer, the Hackings' bishop since September.
Before Mark Hacking was arrested, Packer said he was surprised by revelations that Hacking didn't graduate from the University of Utah or ever apply to medical school. Mark, in fact, dropped out of the U. in 2002. But Packer refused to pass judgment on Mark Hacking.
"My role is to support and love him and just wait to see what unfolds," Packer said. "I'm not in a position to speculate."
Packer said the couple attended worship services the Sunday afternoon before Lori disappeared. The pair seemed happy and in love, and nothing seemed suspicious, he said.
The Hackings attended a University of Utah married student LDS ward. Packer said other members of the ward helped in the search for Lori, passing out fliers and praying for the safe return of their friend. "They were just a wonderful couple," Packer said. "There was just no indication about anything in their relationship that was of any unusual or negative nature at all."
A violent reaction?
No one knows what Mark Hacking was thinking the night his wife was allegedly murdered. But for a man backed into a corner, possibly crumbling under the discovery of his lies, such a reaction, if true, was extreme, says Lou Bertram, who spent years with the FBI as a psychological profile coordinator.
"Some people turn to alcohol, drugs. . . . Unfortunately, in this case," as police believe, he may have "turned to violence."
Mark is seen on security video at Maverik the night before he reported Lori missingLeave your wife. Disappear. Run away. "That would be more the norm," Bertram said. "That's why it surprises me that Mark just did not leave."
Instead, investigators believe he left what they are calling a "disorganized crime scene," with much evidence in the car and apartment where the couple lived at 127 S. Lincoln Street, No. 7.
"He snapped, that's what he did," Bertram said. "Sunday night or Monday morning . . . , we don't know what the conversation was between him and Lori, but things had been building up and he snapped. That's why it was so chaotic. He tried to cover his tracks , but he was disorganized."
The Mark Hacking who met police July 19, the morning he reported his wife missing, was a very different person from the gregarious, helpful, warm person his friends describe.
Just a few hours after Hacking reported his wife missing, Salt Lake City police officer Sonny Ricks was assigned to watch the couple's apartment.
"As I walked toward Apt. #7, Mark exited," Ricks wrote in his police report from that day. Mark was holding two cell phones, a lighter and some kind of tin container. The officer asked Mark to stay with him until detectives arrived, and while Mark was waiting, his brother walked up and asked what was happening.
"Apparently, they're nervous that I bought a mattress," Mark told his brother, according to the police report. He then said, "I just need to get away," according to the report.
"Hi Laynie, How are you? I'm sorry you won't be at the reunion, although in light of the recent news of Mark Hacking, I doubt it's going to be a very exciting reunion."—On the Class of 1994 Web site, Cori (Green) Graham, Orem High Class of '94.
Saturday, Aug. 14, the day of Lori's memorial service, dozens of graduates from Orem High School's Class of 1994 also will meet at the school on South Tiger Way for their 10-year class reunion. Kara Cottle will be there, as she said several years ago that she might. Mark Hacking will not.