Wife of US Coast Guardsman Who Faked Death Speaks Out

Published 07/01 2014 06:35PM

Updated 07/01 2014 07:13PM

MARTINSBURG, W.Va.  - The wife of the former United States Coast Guardsman, Larry Shelby, who faked his own suicide, spoke out.

"He told me that he loved me and hopes that I'd wait for him," says Karen Shelby, wife of Larry.

Larry was an Information Systems Technician and was stationed in St. Louis from July 2011 to November 2013 when he disappeared. However, it was not until January when word was received he would still be alive.

Since Larry was local to the Martinsburg area, state police arrived at the house off of North High Street and waited for Shelby to leave. As he drove away, police followed him for awhile and stopped him at the Sheetz gas station off of Edwin Miller Boulevard. He was then arrested without incident and charged with desertion.

It is a case that has left many wondering why anyone would fake their own death. Karen Shelby has been trying to answer that same question and said Larry has always lived life "by the books."

"On the fact that he faked his own suicide, I don't know if that was intended or that's what he planned. It was never really talked about between him and myself," added Karen.

Larry served 15 years in the United States Coast Guard, but before he was reported dead, Karen said he was diagnosed with depression and now, she is shocked to find out the man she married is still alive.

That was not until last week when Larry was arrested and charged with desertion.

Karen added, "It's overwhelming. I don't know if there's even words to express how sucky everything has been. My children are afraid to go back to school."

Karen said the last time she had spoken to Larry was the day he was arrested which was last week. The case remains under investigation.
 


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