Facebook Twitter



A man who spent 18 years on death row for murdering a family of four, including a 22-month-old boy, after breaking out of prison was executed by injection early Thursday.

"Don't worry about me, I'll be fine," Randy Greenawalt said when asked if he had any last words, Corrections Director Terry Stewart said.Greenawalt, 47, was serving a life sentence for a 1974 murder when he and fellow killer Gary Tison escaped from the state prison in Florence on July 30, 1978, with the help of Tison's three sons.

The next night, they kidnapped and killed a Yuma family and stole their car. The bodies of Marine Sgt. John Lyons, 24, his wife, Donnelda, 23, and their little boy, Christopher, were found near the fugitives' abandoned car. The body of the couple's niece, Theresa Tyson, 15, was found a quarter-mile away.

After driving north and changing vehicles several times, the gang killed Texas newlyweds James and Margene Judge near Pagosa Springs, Colo., police believe, although the case was never prosecuted.

The Tisons and Greenawalt were back in Arizona on Aug. 11, 1978, driving the Judges' stolen van. They ran one roadblock but were stopped at a second.

Authorities killed one of Tison's sons, and Tison fled into the desert, where he died of exposure. Greenawalt and the surviving sons, Raymond and Ricky Tison, were captured, tried and sentenced to death.

The Tisons' death sentences were overturned by the state Supreme Court in 1992, and they were resentenced to life in prison.

As the execution began, Greenawalt smiled, wiggled his feet and strained to wave his right hand to his sister, Darlene, sitting in the front row. He appeared to mouth the words, "I love you."