I am curious about his change in attitude towards his wife just after their marriage, as related by Sylvia’s best friend and confidante for 30 years.
Sylvia was hearbroken and mystified by the Jekyll/Hyde change from laughing, loving, affectionate partner, to what he became shortly after marriage. She complained that he had become cold and distant: he was suddenly aloof, uncaring or indifferent; also in financial matters he wanted to act as if they were not married, with completely separate accounts, and expected her to cover all “her” expenses, and family expenses, herself, without any help from him.
She could not understand what had affected such a change and came to believe he no longer loved her...when she found out about the child he had concealed when she came across the tax papers, she confronted him...and he lied to her face about it. She called his mom who told her the sad story of that child. That was her breaking point.
She told him she wanted a divorce, and he made no protest or objection, so Sylvia told her friend “See? I was right. He really doesn’t love me anymore” and Bruce Pardo very calmly put her things out of the house and told her to leave.
(Pardo also lied, in an almost comically transparent way, to a judge about putting the things out of the house, claiming he was just “rearranging the living room”, in documents filed with the court).
What would cause a newly married man to suddenly go cold and withdrawn, after being a loving partner and choosing to marry?
All sorts of ideas about mental illness or whatever ...but I wonder if his affection for her was ever real, or if he had an ulterior motive for marrying.
He wouldn’t be the first sociopath who married in order to achieve some sort of secondary gain through deception.
I don’t know why this keeps occurring to me, since there has been nothing about it said anywhere, but I wonder if he asked her to put him on her life insurance, but she decided to keep her children as the main beneficiaries. Did he just decide he wanted out the minute he got married? Had he been hatching a scheme now thwarted?
He was drawing down , hiding family assets well before she told him she was leaving; he seemed to want out himself. So very peculiar.
Now here is a wilder suggestion, much wilder even than suggesting he had more than mere negligent involvement in his son’s accident:
He was planning his “Christmas Party” well before he was even fired, buying up guns. He bore ill will towards his mother.
Do you think it is possible, as I do, that he “tested” his fuel-air device in the Sylmar area? Both brother and mother lived in the area - and she lost her home in the Sylmar fires. Could a man who intended to shoot and burn his mother at a Christmas party, have set a fire in the area, maybe hoping his mother would be among the victims and that none would be the wiser?
I’ve never read anything indicating the Sylmar fires were anything but wildfires boosted by high wind conditions. But I wonder all the same.
Would it really be beyond the pale for him to test his device, and to do so in Sylmar?
wow - I hadn’t read that about the disintegration of the marriage.
Certainly, anyone who would commit such an unspeakable act would have a few screws loose. Sociopath? Who know? Very likely.
I hadn’t thought about the time and effort that must have gone into designing that “flame thrower”, but you are right.
That would have taken some planning - and testing.