In 2005 Adam L. Marx disappeared without warning and left no message for his wife. Karen did not know what happened to her husband until she tracked him down with the help of Facebook nearly a decade later. When she finally located him, she found he was not only still alive but happily married to someone else.
Karen met Adam at the Outagamie County Fair and found herself instantly attracted to him. He was working at the fair and, according to his wife, had endless charm and long hair. To her dismay, Adam also had a wife. He claimed, at the time, that he had only been with his wife for six weeks, but seven years later he was still technically married to her.
Adam told Karen he was willing to finalize his separation from his first wife to be with her. Karen thought, “If he is going to get divorced after all this time, he must really want to be with me and my children.” She concluded, they would be one big happy family.
Just as he said, Adam filed for divorce in 2001 from his first wife. A year later, on Valentine’s Day, he married his second wife, Karen Shepard. They had a small courthouse wedding and went to dinner at a local restaurant with their five children; Adam had two children from a previous relationship and Karen had three of her own. Adam and Karen went to Sheboygan, Wisconsin for their honeymoon before returning home to start life as newlyweds.
Adam moved into the home Karen shared with her children and quit his job. Karen was a machine operator and supported the family. However, soon after they were married Adam disappeared. He left Karen a note, but returned to her a few months later. Wife number two said when he left it was as if someone reached into her chest and ripped her heart out. He explained to her that he left because he could not handle her children and it was her fault.
Karen admitted suspicion when Adam returned just in time for her Christmas bonus. Despite her concerns, she accepted him back. According to Karen, she gave her husband an ultimatum that if he ever did that again she would not take him back. Feeling they needed a fresh start, Karen cashed in her 401(K), bought a new house in Clinton, Montana and moved the combined family out-of-town.
The first year after relocating seemed to go great. Then Adam stopped coming home, began racking up plenty of debt with Payday loans and things quickly began disintegrating. After suspecting Adam was cheating Karen told him to either leave or shape up. He packed his bags, loaded up his truck and wife number two locked the door behind him.
Instantly Karen thought, “Here we go again” and this time I am far away from my family. By 2005 she had lost touch completely with her husband and was left with his bills and declining health due to stress. It was not until nearly a decade later that she located her mother-in-law on Facebook and decided to call her. At that time Adam’s mother informed Karen about her son’s new wife.
Adam Marx faces charges of fraud, bigamy and lying on his marriage license by claiming his new wife was his first one. If found guilty of fraud, he is facing up to six years in prison and three and a half years if convicted of bigamy. Allegedly, during the police investigation Adam told officials that he was under the impression that Karen had handled the divorce while he was gone.
by Cherese Jackson (Virginia)