“And did I meet D.B. Cooper?  I believe I did!”

Corvallis, Gayle Downing, Rackstraw, DB Cooper, Norman de Winter
Gayle Downing – Former Stewardess
Norman de Winter's Shell Lei Necklace gift, DB Cooper
Gift from “Norman de Winter” (AKA DBC/Rackstraw)

Cold Case investigators state that Rackstraw used more than twenty fake identities in five countries over the years, but none more elaborate than Norman de Winter.

According to residents in both Astoria and Corvallis, Oregon, this vacationing “Swiss baron” pilot charmed his way into homes, restaurants and community events for four months in late 1971. But old articles also revealed he had grifted thousands of dollars from these kind souls and naive young people. Then he picked up and vanished…the day before the Portland hijacking.

Here is a testimonial from one of fifteen identified eyewitnesses:

At a 1971 college party with friends in Corvallis, I met a charismatic young man named Norman, and we conversed for over an hour.  He had beautiful warm eyes and the inflection in his voice was very soothing. Then I never saw him again… until June of 2014. That’s when I received a call from Producer Tom Colbert.

Later while viewing some of his old TV news footage, forty-five years later, I was once again looking into the eyes and heard the voice of “Norm.”

Colbert told me about his investigation, and how they believe Norman de Winter, Robert Rackstraw and Dan Cooper were one in the same.  After a myriad of discussions and reading Colbert’s book, The Last Master Outlaw, I’m convinced that my Norman and Rackstraw are the same man. And did I meet D.B. Cooper?  I believe I did!

Gayle Downing – Former Stewardess