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Richard McFadin–Ken McElroy’s Lawyer–Died in May

I just learned that Richard or “Gene” McFadin died last May. Here is a link to his obituary. McFadin was Ken McElroy’s lawyer, and used to claim that he had gotten his client off more than twenty times. McFadin was reputed to be a “mob lawyer” in Kansas City. He never denied the connection to me. McFadin used every trick in the book to get McElroy acquitted on the many charges against him, and he took great satisfaction in his successes. McFadin claimed that McElroy was the perfect client because he always paid in cash and did exactly what his lawyer told him to do. McFadin was unable to get his favorite client off for the shooting off the Skidmore grocer Ernest Bowenkamp, but it was his success in keeping McElroy out on bond after his conviction that eventually led to McElroy’s killing on the main

street of Skidmore  in July 1981.

The people of Skidmore and McElroy’s other victims used to curse McFadin for getting McElroy out from under the law time and again to continue his crime spree, but McFadin took great delight in his reputation as a cunning/crafty lawyer who walked the line in representing his client. He so liked the way I wrote about him in “In Broad Daylight” that he bought copies for every member of the Missouri State Senate, where he worked as a lobbyist. He had me autograph the books before he hand delivered them.

I write about McFadin and my relationship with him in my upcoming Kindle Short “About In Broad Daylight, the Story Behind the Book.” Personally, I liked McFadin because he was without pretense–he made no bones about who he was and what he did. He was also extremely helpful to me in researching the book, arranging, for example, my interview with Trena.

I met with Gene again in 2007, not long before the rerelease of “In Broad Daylight.” He was not doing well then, but he was his usual self. He felt not the slightest regret in getting McElroy off for his crimes; he was, as he used to like to say, just doing his job.

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