Walter Reca made three separate confessions to the D.B. Cooper skyjacking during his lifetime. These separate testimonies are essential to the investigation and help corroborate his story.
1999-2012: A verbal 12-year conversation with his best friend, Carl Laurin
Walter and Carl had numerous conversations over a 12 year period, sometimes multiple per day. Carl taped over 10 hours of their conversation - about a third of which are solely about the skyjacing - with Walt’s written and notarized permission that they could be released only after Walter’s death.
In these conversations, Walter discussed his motivation, preparation, and details of the hijacking. They also talked through how Walter spent the money and how his life drastically changed following the hijacking. Clips from these audio tapes are included in the documentary “D.B. Cooper: The Real Story.”
2013: A written confession
Near the end of Walt’s life, Carl helped him type up a written confession to the skyjacking in the style of a last will and testament. Over several weeks, Carl asked Walt to dictate a confession to him, and Carl would record it on paper. Neither of these men were technology-literate; the process was laborious as Carl printed out the confession by hand and mailed each new version to Walt. Walt would then call Carl and to discuss changes which resulted in the next version being dictated, printed, and mailed repeatedly.
When the product was finally completed, Walt, who was now disabled and unable to drive, waited for the next visit of his sister and niece so they could help him notarize it. However, upon their arrival in 2013, Lisa and her mother refused to take him out of concern for his safety. They understood that Walt could still be prosecuted and were afraid that he would spend his last days in prison.
2013: A personal, verbal confession to his sister and niece, Lisa Story
During that same 2013 visit to her Uncle Walt, Lisa Story heard him confess to being D.B. Cooper and living a life of clandestine operations following the skyjacking. Lisa’s mother, Walter’s younger sister Sandy, also heard Walt’s confession. Lisa could hardly believe it, but slowly the details of Walter’s life came together and seemed to support his story. Documents like the KGB identification that Walter gave Lisa helped her realize that there was an overwhelming amount of evidence to back up his confession.