This book is just one account of what took place on that fatal September 21, 1986 night. It was a warm and beautiful Sunday night on the Sunset High way in Oregon when Cheryl Keeton was brutally bludgeoned body was found in her van, in the fast lane by a motorist, Randall Kelly Blighton who just stopped to see if he could offer any type of help. Randall Blighton saw a silhouette of an infant in the vans window which now he says was a car seat. He felt that he couldn't just pass by after he had just dropped off his own children with their mother. When he first arrived by the van he set out flares to make sure that everybody knew that the van was there. He then went to open the drivers side door and found that a woman's purse was jammed between the accelerator and the firewall, that would explain the continually motion forward.
He could see that a figure was lying across the front seat and that the head was tucked into the chest just over the passenger seat. He could see that the figure had on one loafer type on one foot that looked feminine. As he searched to turn on the emergency flashers and was unable to find them, not knowing that they were over head. He felt the floor to see if there was a baby. However, as he felt around he realized that the floor and seats of the van and realized why it was so hard to see through the drivers side window that was splattered with something dark, blood. Nevertheless, he felt it was more important to keep searching to find the baby instead of stopping.
He shuddered and didn't get how there could be so much blood in the van if it hadn't been hit by another vehicle. Randall then hopped in the drivers seat and moved the van on to the shoulder of 79th where it met sunset highway. Mr. Blighton then ran to the passenger side door, which was slightly open to see if the woman had a pulse when he could not feel one he then ran to get help. He finally came to a house and told them to call for help. Thomas Stewart Duffy Jr was on duty that night at Washington County Fire District Number One. The call came in roughly at 8: 44 that night.
They had many calls come in from the sunset highway and most proved fatal. They arrived to see the blue Toyota van parked facing north along 79th. The man was covered in dark spots and they weren't sure just what they were getting into. When they arrived at the woman they realized that it was a homicide and they needed to call in help. Cheryl Keeton had been murdered that night and no one knew exactly why.
An autopsy was performed and investigation into every possible suspect. Cheryl keeton "pink funeral" took place on September 24, 1986 and her sons nor estranged husband attend. By that time brad had it set in his head that they were next to be killed and picked up his new girlfriend Sara Gordon and insisted that they never stay in one place more then once. Sara Gordon had been married twice before and both had failed due to her busy career as a Doctor. When Sara met Brad she felt as though he might be mister right and now she wasn't sure what she was feeling after everything had happened. Her and brad dropped the children off at one Sara's relatives and went to stay at a motel.
They later took a shower together when Sara had noticed a burse under Brads arm and he was quick to answer after Sara questioned where he had gotten that from that it was from the park on the jungle gym. Apparently he went to get the littlest from the top and his arm banged down hard enough to leave a mark. Cheryl Keeton who had not taken her husbands surname, was already a full partner in the law firm of Garvey, Schubert and Barer. She also had three sons Jess, Michael and Phillip who she loved more then any thing. She was in a custody battle with Bradley Morris Cunningham her estranged husband. Brad was the most likely suspect in Cheryl's murdered since it seemed as though he had been gone for longer then what he said.
Nevertheless, at that time there was little to no evidence to prove that he was the killer. You have to remember that back in the 1980's there was very little they could do with DNA testing. Brad, Sara and his children jess, Michael were all asked to testify and did so in front of a grand jury according to what was said in the children's testimonies brad was gone longer then he said he was and in the time he said it took him to do things around his apartment building. It was later that year that brad and Sara married and on the run from what brad felt might be after them next. Sara had adopted the boys as if they were hers. And was not sure how to tell them and how hurt they might be if she was to tell them that a divorce was to come.
She had many measures taken to make sure that brad could not get any more money from any of her accounts as they were already over drawn. The boys still wrote asking for money from her as if she was there mother. They also called almost as they were being coxed by brad. She had to sell their house and boat to try and get more money to help support the bakery and bistro that her and brad were running while they were married. By the spring of 1991 brad was 41. Sara and he had separated and he looked for a nanny to take of his children.
Sara knew she had to sell both estates but every time she tried to brad wouldn't let her. She knew what type of man he was and how relentless he could be. The few things she did take from there home she moved into the apartment they had owned. But she didn't seem to feel safe in either. So she went back to working a lot and sleeping in providence hospital where she was protected by her closest friends. Her calls would go through them first and then a message would be past on to her.
It was becoming more clear now that brad Cunningham was an obsessive man and once he had you in his reach you were pretty much his. Every woman that walked into brads life feared what might happened if they betrayed him. Many of his ex wives went into hiding because of this fear. Brad later left the house and it was a mess Sara was unsure if he was ever to return and went to the house with a realtor only to find the locks and high tech security system had been changed. Did you know? This would be the second case to be tried in civil court for a murder with no weapons just circumstantial evidence...
Cheryl Keeton could see that Brad would kill her and was warned by many close friends never to be alone with him but felt she had to go and get her children back that fatal Sunday night... Brad Cunningham grew up in a divorced household where he was not wanted by his father and was never to see his mother or have any contact with her. After she had an affair with a Hispanic man and was caring his child... He had a brother that never was able to have a relationship with a woman...
Been married 4 times before Sara, seemed not to marry for love but for control and to get what ever he wanted. Eight years after killing his divorced wife in Portland, Oregon, Brad Cunningham was finally convicted of her murder.