Daughter of Man Killed in Mills 18 Years Ago Still Has No Answers
Lauren Moser knows her daddy loved her.
Growing up, she heard stories about how she was a spitting image of Danny Moser. They walked the same way. Her relatives say Lauren sounds just like her father.
Lauren speaks about how her dad used to put her knees on his hands and throw her up in the air. It scared Lauren's mom to death, but the father always caught the daughter.
They called it the cannonball.
"Just looking at pictures, you can tell my dad loved me very, very much," Lauren said.
Then there are the unknowns:
How did Danny Moser end up in a pool of his own blood at the Wagon Wheel in Mills one October night in 2001? How did he get from the Cattleman's Bar in downtown Casper to the Mills skating rink? Why? Just what happened?
Eighteen years ago during the wee hours of Oct. 20, a Mills police officer on patrol spotted a lifeless body in the Wagon Wheel parking lot.
When the officer got to the man, he had to roll him onto his side because he was aspirating on his blood. An ambulance came and took him to Wyoming Medical Center.
"He was on life support for two days, then we took him off," Lauren says. "That was that."
At the time, Lauren was 4 years old.
"I have grown up without a father for 18 years because of it," she said. "I absolutely have no answers."
That void is largely to credit with many struggles Lauren has had throughout her life.
She struggled with drug abuse and she's seen a counselor most of her life because of it.
Life has improved, but it's still a struggle. Lauren has been sober for two years now.
Four months ago, Lauren gave birth to her daughter, whom she named after Danny.
"She looks exactly like me, which means she looks exactly like my dad. She is my life-saver," Lauren said. "I feel like my dad brought me my daughter. She saved my life. I wouldn't be here without that."
Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation Special Agent Ryan Cox said there's still an ongoing investigation into Danny's death. The agency has received tips as recently as last week.
According to Crime Stoppers of Central Wyoming, new information came to light in the case a few years back. Investigators believe Danny may have been hit by a car. The last place Danny was known to be before the Mills police officer found him was the Cattleman's Bar.
Sometimes its information the agency has already received, others it's new information — but it's always looked into, Cox said.
Cox said there has to be someone out there with direct knowledge of what happened 18 years ago. It's just whether or not they speak up.
Seeing the person who took her father away before she really got to know him — seeing that person brought to justice would be a "golden ticket" for Lauren.
"That would bring up our spirits a lot more," she said. "We all obviously understand our dad's not coming back."
In some ways, there'd be agony in finding out exactly what happened to Danny Moser, Lauren said. It would be the best day of Lauren's life, but it would also be the worst because that means the saga would be over.
She doesn't know what she'd say if ever given the chance to confront her father's killer, though Lauren thinks about it every day.
Lauren said it'd probably be along the lines of, "You robbed me. You stole from me. Now myself, my daughter, her kids ... They'll never know who their grandpa is, who she's named after. They will never understand why she carries that name.
"I'd also say I forgive them because I've come to peace with it."
Anyone with information on the case is should contact DCI at 307-261-2194, or Crime Stoppers at 577-TIPS, Text A Tip through the TipSubmit Mobile app or the website crime-stoppers.com.