One should never look a gift horse in the mouth. However, with that said, if a thing seems too good to be true, it usually is…
When Tammy Grogan was offered an all-expenses paid trip aboard a Carnival Cruise ship, she was just unable to resist. But what had started out as a wonderful family vacation quickly turned into a nightmare for this single mom and her family. Now, 3 years later, her family has come forward with shocking new allegations…
Tammy Grogan was a 35-year-old single mother who lived in West Toledo, Ohio. Always pleasant and amiable, Tammy worked for a local dentist’s office and lived with her 14-year-old-son Jimmy. In 2006, the family was able to get some extra money together and planned to go on a cruise with some friends.
The four-day cruise would take Tammy, her son, her mother, and two friends to Key West and Calica, which is the port for Playa Del Carmen in the Caribbean. After a day on the ship, everyone seemed to be having a great time. The next day, however, Tammy failed to show up for their daily meetup…
The ship, Carnival Cruise Lines’ Imagination, had docked in Mexico at the Playa del Carmen the day before she vanished. The whole family had enjoyed a day of fun in the sun before, presumably, returning to the ship for the night. That day on the beach was the last time that anyone, including her 14-year-old son, had seen Tammy.
The very next morning, when she failed to show up for their meeting, Tammy’s sister Bonnie reported to the information deck, and told them Tammy had disappeared. The circumstances, however, were unusual, to say the least. Apparently, Tammy had been missing for over 32 hours before it was reported….
Kept a Secret
At first, the cruise line decided not to divulge the name of the missing passenger to the rest of the ship. They wanted a chance to search the ship first, without ushering a warning to whomever may have harmed Tammy, if indeed that had been the case. They searched her cabin and interviewed other passengers in private.
A Report the Night Before
It was soon determined that the only plausible explanation for Tammy’s disappearance was that she went overboard the night before. Looking at the ship’s logs, investigators found a man overboard report dated for around 9:30 am on the morning of September 11, 2006…
No Advanced Search
Unfortunately, the guards on duty had been unable to find where the supposed splash had come from and thought perhaps they’d imagined things. It wasn’t until several days later that they decided something had gone very wrong: Tammy may have fallen over the side of the ship.
The Call Went Out
Although they brought in the Mexican Rescue Coordination team and the U.S. Coast guard, their combined efforts were unable to help them locate Tammy Grogan. They examined the 400 miles of waterway along the path of the ship but couldn’t find her. When her family returned home, things got even more confusing. And frightening…
Missing at Home
When Jimmy Fleischmann returned home to his and his mother’s apartment, he found something that he could barely believe. While they had gone, someone had broken in and stolen her computer, jewelry, and credit cards. Jimmy wasn’t sure what to think. Just when his whole life had already been turned upside down, he had to face more loss.
The situation became even more eerie when police determined that the apartment had not been broken into, but that the burglar had apparently gotten inside using the key. Sometime after the incident itself, Bonnie Grogan reported some more strange coincidences surrounding her daughter’s disappearance on the cruise ship…
Tammy’s mother believes that her daughter’s disappearance is the direct result of the interference of a man who had come into her daughter and grandson’s life just prior to them going on the cruise. She believes that Tammy was murdered by this man and thrown overboard all in an attempt to get closer to Jimmy Fleischmann, her son.
Bonnie Grogan says that Tammy’s son, Jimmy Fleischmann was involved with 25-year-old Craig Morgan, who in recent months had become a sort of lavish benefactor to Jimmy and his mother. Bonnie believes that Tammy had begun to notice that the gifts and favors Craig had been bestowing upon them, were culminating in a most inappropriate relationship with her son…
Craig continued to ply Tammy with gifts of jewelry and expensive dinners, though, and it was Craig who had bought all of them the cruise tickets, as well. Bonnie believed that this was all part of an elaborate ruse to get rid of Tammy and therefore get unfettered access to Jimmy. The cruise was the perfect place and it provided Craig with a perfect alibi.
Lots of Time
Craig’s plan was ironclad. He had been a friend to Tammy’s friend, Debbie and had bought the tickets as a congratulatory gift for her having lost 100 pounds. It just so happened he asked her to invite Tammy, her son, and her mother. Lost in the fantasy, and assuming that perhaps she had seen the wrong things in Craig, Tammy accepted and they all went aboard the ship together…
Not on the Cruise
As it happens, Craig made sure not to be aboard the ship, having sent some of his relatives in his stead. Instead, Craig’s sister Rebecca and her ex-boyfriend, Robbie Pantosia went with the Grogans. It was the perfect alibi. Like Tammy and her son, Bonnie hadn’t suspected anything. Craig was just a generous man who enjoyed being a sort of pseudo-father figure for Jimmy.
The night that Tammy disappeared, Bonnie had been spending some time with Craig’s friend in Tammy’s cabin. The two had been hanging out on the balcony when Bonnie had asked for a glass of water. The polite friend offered to go get it and returned soon after. A few sips later and Bonnie passed out cold. She had been drugged…
Investigators would later indicate that they’d found Rohypnol in Bonnie’s drink. When asked about it, Rebecca Morgan had explained that she had been having issues sleeping and had presumed that Bonnie Grogan had been experiencing the same issue. She was only trying to help. The next day, Tammy was gone.
As the years flew by, Jimmy Fleischmann grew up, but he always remained close to his new benefactor and friend: Craig Morgan. In 2009, he dropped out of high school and joined the military. In September of that year, Jimmy went AWOL from his basic training in Fort Benning, Georgia. It is assumed that he moved in with Craig Morgan…
Despite Bonnie’s theories and the significant shadiness of the Morgans, the police have still been unable to link Tammy Grogan’s disappearance to anything done by Craig Morgan or his family members. One of their theories regarding the case is that Craig instructed the impressionable 14-year-old Jimmy into disposing of his mother’s computer and to make it look like a burglary.
Bonnie Grogan firmly believes that her grandson had been brainwashed by Craig Morgan and that his impressionable young mind had cracked when his mother disappeared. Bonnie says authorities found the date rape drug inside Craig Morgan’s apartment, but still can’t prove anything. We may never know what really happened, but we do know that sometimes, in rare cases, if it’s too good to be true: it may very well be.