Richard Franklin Speck (December 6, 1941 – December 5, 1991) was a mass murderer who systematically killed eight student nurses from South Chicago Community Hospital in Chicago, Illinois on July 14, 1966.
Speck was born in Kirkwood, Illinois, the seventh of eight children to Benjamin Speck and Mary Gladys Sterner. He was raised in a religious family. His father died when he was five, and sometime afterwards, his mother took Richard and his younger sister Carolyn to Dallas, Texas. They moved to a section called East Dallas. After the move, his mother married Carl Lindberg, whom Speck loathed for his drunkenness, abuse, and frequent absences from the house.
Speck was a poor student. By the age of 12, he had begun drinking alcohol, a habit that would last for the rest of his life. He used alcohol partly to ease the pain of headaches he had begun to suffer at the age of five, after suffering head injuries from a claw hammer with which he'd been playing. He fell out of a tree twice, and at 15 he ran head-first into a steel girder. Speck dropped out of school in the 9th grade.