Man Murders Wife Because He Couldn’t Afford Her Pain Meds

Williams & Carolyn Hager
Williams & Carolyn Hager

*This story, oddly enough, prompted me to call my 77-year-old mom, just to check in, tell her I love her, and make sure she was ok. The guy I’m about to tell you about clearly was not.

William Hager, 86, fatally shot his wife of more than 50 years, Carolyn, 78, in the head while she slept, because they couldn’t afford her medication.

They’d been living their lives out, after raising children together, in Port St. Lucie, Florida.

Clearly, the family was close. Hager called his daughters to tell them what happened, before he called 911.

The first question that came to mind as I learned of this story was “Where were the Hagers’ daughters as the elderly couple struggled with their bills?”

A police report offers chilling details:

“She had a lot of illnesses and other ailments which required numerous medications,” the report states. “They could no longer afford them.”

Hager had been thinking of killing his wife for several days because of her chronic pain.

When police arrived, they found Carolyn’s lifeless body propped up with pillows in the couple’s bed, wrapped up in a blanket.

Carolyn had told her husband that she wanted to die, having become sick about 15 years ago…

Again, where were the daughters?

…and her medications had become so expensive that the couple filed for bankruptcy in 2011.

That bankruptcy petition states that the Hagers lived off Social Security benefits and the $1,542.71 a month that Hager, then 81 years old, earned working as a salesperson at Sears. After deductions, he brought home $894.93 per month.

Where were the daughters??

The couple carried $53,873.96 in debt, most of which was due to medical bills that had been placed on credit cards.


William Hager is in jail today, facing first-degree murder charges. And police say he knew that was coming.

“He was perfectly clear…that he was going to be arrested and go to jail,” Sherriff’s chief Deputy Garry Wilson said. “But he felt that was his course of action. He showed emotion and he was very clear that he was out of options in his mind.”

I’d give my eye teeth for a chance to interview Hagar’s daughters. I know first-hand that family dynamics can get weird, but I believe the couple’s children fell short of their moral obligation to step up IF they had prior knowledge of their parents’ circumstances.

What do YOU think?

2 thoughts on “Man Murders Wife Because He Couldn’t Afford Her Pain Meds”

  1. Well this is the dilemma of so many elderly …they can be seen in the garbage cans behind the supermarket… coming into banks dragging a wheeled suitcase after the shelter closes in morning …… taking medicine every other day …etc. Sometimes the grave is a welcome solutiion to llife’s ills.

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