Levi King Victims: Who Were They? How Did They Die?

In September 2005, Levi King was responsible for two massacres in two different states, destroying two families for life — the McCools and the Conrads. However, the killer made the mistake of leaving behind a survivor, leading to his quick arrest. The details of both mass killings are covered in the episode titled ‘Live to Tell: Sole Survivor’ of CBS’ ’48 Hours.’ It also features exclusive interviews with the family members and friends of the victims, including the sole survivor, providing intricate details about the victims of the tragedies and the impact they left.

Still Grieving a Personal Loss, Orlie and Dawn McCool Were Killed in Their House

Born on February 23, 1935, to Chester Lee McCool and Elma Hendrickson McCool in Jane, Missouri, Orlie Wade McCool grew up in a loving household along with his brothers, Lon, Leo, and Jerry McCool, and a sister named Cleo Slinkard. Orlie joined the US Army right after graduating from a high school in Wichita, Kansas. He also served for a while in Japan, after studying in a language school in Monterey, California. Then, he joined the Granthan School of Electronics in Kansas City, Missouri, after which he opened up an electronic shop in Neosho. In 1974, he relocated to Shell Knob, Missouri, and owned a restaurant. About a decade later, in February 1984, he operated the Steak Out Restaurant in the town of Jane, Missouri.

Image Credit: Becky Lambert

As far as the personal aspects of his life are concerned, he was married to Wilma Day Miller and had three children — two sons, Mark and Michael Wade McCool, and a daughter, Belinda “Lindy” O’Brien. Out of them, Michael was married to Laura Dawn Burr McCool, with whom he shared a son named Matthew McCool. The daughter of Troy and Laura Burr, Dawn was born on July 13, 1958, in Neosho, Missouri. Growing up alongside her sister Karen Davidson, she was a Christian who always put the needs of others ahead of her own needs. She studied at Neosho High School before attending Crowder College. Starting from the late 1980s, she was employed at Wal-Mart in Bentonville, Arkansas, until July 2005. On the personal front, she was described as a great mother, sister, daughter, friend, and everything in between.

Image Credit: Becky Lambert

Just a while prior to their demise, Michael passed away on April 27, 2005, resulting in Orlie losing his son while Dawn, her husband. Both of them seemingly shared a healthy relationship and lived under the same roof at 340 Pleasant Ridge Road in rural Pineville. On September 30, 2005, Matthew, son of Dawn and Michael, received an alarming call from a family member who could not get in touch with Dawn. A few hours later, he left work and drove to their residence, only to find out that his 47-year-old mother and 70-year-old grandfather had been murdered by a relative who had entered the house to check up on them.

Later, it was found out that Levi King, who had been staying at his father’s house a few miles away, had stolen his father’s guns and went to the McCool residence, where he fired one shot at Orlie while shooting Dawn multiple times. When questioned about the murder, he stated, “Before I even realized it, I mean, I’d just pointed it at him and fired.” Moreover, talking about firing at Dawn, he confessed, “I was scared. I was, I mean, I didn’t know what was gonna happen to me. You know, I was panicking.” After killing them, he reportedly stole a .380-caliber handgun and drove off in Orlie’s 2005 Dodge Dakota pickup. After driving down through Oklahoma to Interstate 40, he noticed an isolated farmhouse. As the killer’s lust for blood arose again, he decided to pull in.

Michell, Brian Conrad, and Zach Were Ambushed by Levi King At Night

In the Pampa, Texas, farmhouse lived the Conrad family, which included Brian, Michell, and her children from a previous relationship — Zach Doan and Robin. Born on October 1, 1969, in Grand Prairie, Texas, Michell Sudderth Conrad graduated from Pampa High School in 1989. After that, she was employed at Gray County Farm Bureau for about a decade. On January 17, 2003, she tied the knot with Brian Conrad, but before that, she was a single mother of Zachery Ryan “Zach” Doan and Robin Doan.

Image Credit: Becky Lambert

In the later part of her life, she and her husband were associated with 4-H while being a member of the Briarwood Full Gospel Church. Additionally, she was also active in the Pampa Optimist Club. Brian Conrad, who was born to Mike and Sharon Conrad on May 2, 1974, in Abilene, Texas, grew up under the love and care of his parents and his sister, Kimberly Conrad. After graduating from Cleburne High School in 1992, he went to Clarendon College, where he studied farm and ranch management. Then, he earned a degree in agriculture from Oklahoma Panhandle State University.

Putting his education and degrees to use, he began operating his family farm and ranch in Pampa, Texas. While Brian, aged 31, was a stepfather to two of Michell’s children, he and Michell were going to welcome a child together as the 35-year-old was six months pregnant with Mikel “Baby Mikel” Conrad. Michell gave birth to Zachery Ryan “Zach” Doa on August 20, 1991, in Pampa, Texas. Still in his early teens, the 14-year-old boy was into baseball, track, and air rifle shooting. Following in the footsteps of his mother, he was also associated with the church as he was an integral member of the gospel church choir.

In the late hours of September 30, 2005, Levi King broke into the farmhouse by kicking in the door on the east side and began open firing on the residents who were lying in their beds. He fired three rounds at Brian and Zach but shot Michell six times. He shot the 10-year-old Robin but missed. However, she played dead for more than a couple of hours before she got the courage to get out of bed and report the massacre to the police. Around 11:30 pm that same night, Levi, who was driving Orlie’s truck, was apprehended by the border patrol in El Paso. After being convicted of his crimes, he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Read More: Levi King: Where is the Mass Murderer Now?