Remembering Dottie & Bob Tidwell

Dottie Rowden Tidwell, courtesy of her family

Dottie Rowden Tidwell, courtesy of her family

Remembering Dottie & Bob Tidwell who were murdered on November 23, 1983. The couple was found in their Roanoke, Texas, home. Their house was set on fire to cover up what had been done and to get rid of evidence. The case is unsolved.

Dottie Rowden Tidwell and Robert (Bob) Tidwell lived in the Oak Country Estates in Roanoke, Texas (approx. 5 miles northeast of Keller, TX). Their remains were found among the ashes.

What authorities didn’t find were traces or hints of a “robbery gone bad.” There were no such items as an open safety-deposit box or other fire-retardant boxes used to store documentation and/or jewelry.

Robert Tidwell, photographs courtesy of the family, grid by AdS

Robert Tidwell, photographs courtesy of the family

Authorities never found anyone with a motive and the opportunity to commit this crime. Everyone they could think of was investigated and ultimately, cleared.

A neighbor had heard two gunshots. The trouble here is that in another newspaper article, the Star-Telegram reports that “no one has said they heard the shotgun blasts.”

The Tidwells were shot during daylight at a time people are usually busy coming and going: morning rush hour. Yet nobody saw a strange car coming or leaving the neighbourhood.



Dottie & Bob didn’t seem to have any enemies. Bob (34) was a Texas realtor and Dottie (40) was an interior designer. According to the papers, they didn’t have any debts and neither had a criminal record.

According to newspaper articles, the Tidwells were each shot twice at close range with a 20-gauge shotgun. Dottie had additionally been bludgeoned with a heavy object (I assume on her head). She was shot once in her ear (no information as to left or right) and once in her chest (not specified left or right). I have not found any more details about Bob’s wounds.



The papers mentioned bloodstains in several areas of the house indicating that they could have been assaulted and/or killed in different rooms. They were both found in their bedroom. As for the murder weapon, police found “stocks of two weapons in the debris which could have been the weapons used.” I hope that this has been preserved.

There are no other newspaper articles online about this case at least, none that I could find. The information that I have comes from these copied articles. They were given to me by the Tidwell family.

If you have any information that could help the Roanoke Police Department, call 817-491-6052. Their website is here.

Thank you for remembering the Tidwells with me.