Jeffrey Dahmer’s Dad Has Died

Lionel Dahmer, the father of serial killer Jefferey Dahmer, has died aged 87.
Credit: Alamy & CBS

Jeffrey Dahmer’s father has died. 

Dahmer, who was also known as the Milwaukee Monster, was an American serial killer and s** offender who murdered 17 males between 1978 and 1991.

The killer was convicted for his crimes in 1992 and he was then murdered in prison two years later, aged 34.

It has now been announced that Dahmer’s father, Lionel, has died aged 87.

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Lionel died while in hospice care not far from his home in Ohio, according to The Sun.

At the time of writing, his cause of death is yet to be confirmed.

A source close to Dahmer’s father revealed that he had been in care since October, as his health began to decline after the passing of his second wife, Shari, in January 2023.

The source told the outlet: “It was slow at first, but he didn’t want to get up and move as much. It was almost as if he was ready to go.

“There are plenty people out there who have a lot of respect and admiration for Lionel because of what he went through with Jeff and how he dealt with it.

“It’s a very sad day for those who cared about him.”

The source added that Lionel had suffered from heart issues and was taking medication for it.

Lionel and Jeffrey Dahmer.
Lionel Dahmer, the father of serial killer Jeffrey, has died aged 87. Credit: MSNBC

Lionel was a research chemist who always defended his son – despite his actions.

Speaking to Oprah in 1994 (via New York Post), Dahmer’s father said: “I still love my son. I’ll always stick by him – I always have.”

He reportedly visited Dahmer in prison up until the serial killer’s death.

Their close relationship was highlighted in the Netflix series Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story – for which Evan Peters won a Golden Globe for his performance as the serial killer.

Although the drama series suggests Dahmer’s crimes were influenced by his father teaching him how to dissect roadkill – this did not happen in real life, as per Marie Claire.

Lionel, who had a PhD in chemistry, explained in his book, ‘A Father’s Story’, that he did teach his son about preserving animal bones but he did not show him how to dissect roadkill.

He said Dahmer had simply shown a keen interest in chemistry and biology.

Lionel Dahmer
Lionel Dahmer visited his son in prison before the serial killer’s death. Credit: Prospect Films

Lionel has also been open about missing out on red flags regarding his son’s murders, saying he felt that he could have saved some of the victims.

Speaking to Dr Phil in a three-part special – called In The Presence of Evil: Face to Face with Jeffrey Dahmer – he recalled an incident in which his son stopped him from opening a wooden box which contained the severed head of Anthony Sears, 26, who was murdered in 1989.

He explained that Dahmer was living with his grandmother in Milwaukee after leaving the army and that she had told Lionel about seeing ‘p***ography’ around the house.

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“So when I made the visit to Milwaukee,” he shared (via Daily Mail). “I saw this box in the closet in his room and I said ‘I’m going to open it’ and I started going down to the basement to get a tool to open up the box.”

Apparently, Dahmer complained to Lionel that he could have no privacy but told his dad that he couldn’t open the box until the morning after – when it was only full of p***.

Lionel continued: “In a way I’m glad, in a way I’m not glad that I didn’t press it, because if I had opened that box and found what was in there, I think I would have lost it.

“I could have… more lives could’ve been saved.”

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Written by Rosario Monachino

Rosario is a content editor at IGV who specialises in film, TV and entertainment news. He has a degree in English and Film from the University of Salford and a masters in Journalism from Liverpool John Moores University.