Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

A Million Dollar Murder

Life Goes On

Outside the courtroom, Mel and Candy embraced and kissed. A reporter asked whether they planned to marry.

Of course not, Candy said.

Aunt Candy & Nephew Mel
Aunt Candy & Nephew Mel

It was the truth. Their affair ended not long after the trial. Mossler told intimates that her nephew was too emotionally immature and prone toward jealous rage. Mels version was that he was simply ready to move on to someone nearer his age. Candy had Jacques money to console her.

Mossler left $1 million trust funds for each of the children - his own, Candys, and their adopted orphans. But Candy got most of the $33 million estate, and she parlayed his business investments into a far greater fortune over the next 10 years.

Five years after the trial, she married Barnett Garrison, a Houston electrician. He was 33 and she 52. They lived together briefly in the old Mossler mansion in Houston.

Thirteen months after the marriage, Garrison was crippled in a fall from the room of the house. The couple had been fighting that night and Garrison went out drinking alone. He returned late without keys and apparently tried to climb up to Candys third-floor bedroom. Candy divorced him.

For his part, Mel Powers went into a career as a real estate developer. In the early 1980s he built the Arena Tower and Arena Theater in suburban Houston, a pair of 19-story buildings. He lived in a penthouse atop one of them, until the buildings went into foreclosure.

His financial life has had boom-and-bust cycles. One year he bought a 165-foot yacht; the next he filed for bankruptcy. He was alive and well in his mid-60s at last word. No so Candy Mossler.

In late October 1976, she was staying in a penthouse suite at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami while in town for a bank board meeting. She called for a doctor for a migraine treatment just after midnight.

Deeply sedated, she died in her sleep. The body was found the next morning. Her corpse was flown back toTexas, where she was buried. Candy Mossler died with a net worth estimated at well over $100 million. But her murdered husband, Jacques Mossler, won a more prestigious eternal rest. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C.

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