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'She's not a Crundwell'

I still haven't found Jerry Crundwell, the former husband of Rita Crundwell, accused of misappropriating millions of dollars from the city of Dixon.

But recently, Greg Crundwell, Jerry's son, returned my message.

I found Greg because a reader told me that he had found information on ancestry.com that indicated Greg was Jerry's son from another relationship. I found Greg's Facebook page and learned that he was a driver for a Salem, Ill., trucking company.

Like father, like son. Jerry, we believe, also was a truck driver.

Greg was irritated that I had called his workplace. I told him we were trying to find any information we could about Rita Crundwell's life. After all, thousands of people in Dixon are interested, not to mention those elsewhere in the Sauk Valley.

He said he let his father know that I wanted to speak with him. He said he didn't know whether Jerry would call.

"What he chooses to do is his business," he said. "If he wants to talk with you, he can."

As for Rita Crundwell, the former Dixon comptroller, Jerry said, "She's not a Crundwell. She was married to a Crundwell. That's in the past."

Greg said he had been following the developments on Rita Crundwell's case online.

"I'm sorry this happened to the people of Dixon, but there's no connection to us," he said.

I asked him which state his father lived in. He declined to say.

Our call only lasted a couple of minutes.

We have little information about Jerry Crundwell.

We know that Rita Humphrey married Jerry Crundwell in 1974. Their marriage announcement identified him as being an engineer with a firm that now has offices in Decatur, Rockford and Chicago.

Some readers have said that he was actually a surveyor, not an engineer, for the Interstate 88 project in the 1970s.

Others say they know for sure that Jerry later was a truck driver. In 1990, he got a ticket for an overweight violation in Lee County, indicating he was driving a big rig.

Some readers also have told me that Jerry was known as Walt. My interview with Greg wasn't long enough to ask about his father's name.

The Crundwells divorced in 1987.

Sauk Valley Media reporter David Giuliani covers the Whiteside and Lee county governments, Morrison and other smaller communities. He can be reached at dgiuliani@saukvalley or at 800-798-4085, ext. 525.

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