Who was Laura Kowal? Illinois Widower Mysteriously Drowns in River After Falling Victim to Online Dating Scam

Laura Kowal
Laura A. KowalDetails
ProfessionRetired Hospital Executive.
Birth DateAugust 29, 1962.
Birth PlaceIowa City, Iowa.
Birth SignVirgo.
Died onAugust 9, 2020.
HusbandLate. William Kowal.
KidsKelly Gowe.
ParentsMother: Mary Constance.
Father: Richard Broulik.
SiblingsWilliam Broulik.
Dale Broulik.
Susan Spivey.
Mark Broulik.
Stephen Broulik.
Wesley Broulik.
AlumniCoe College.


Laura Kowal died by drowning in the river

Laura Kowal (age 57, August 29, 1962 – August 9, 2020) was a retired hospital executive from Galena, Illinois. On August 7, 2020, she went missing from her rural home in Galena. She was last seen around noon that day near her residence.

Authorities reported that Kowal left her home driving a white 2016 Honda Pilot with Illinois license plate XBB323. However, her destination was unknown, leaving officials puzzled.

On the same day of her disappearance, Laura’s daughter, Kelly Gowe, received a voicemail from a federal investigator suggesting that her mother might have been involved in a fraud scam.

Tragically, just two days later, on August 9, 2020, Laura Kowal’s body was found in the Mississippi River near Canton, Missouri, nearly four hours away from her home.




Laura Kowal Obituary

Laura was the victim of a $1.5 million scam

When Laura Kowal went missing, police mistakenly thought she might be suicidal, but her daughter, Kelly Gowe, says it was just a misunderstanding. As they searched for Laura, Kelly discovered something troubling: her mom had been tricked by someone named “Frank Borg” into sending $1.5 million to a fake company.

In a letter to her daughter, Kowal confessed she’d been living a secret life, tricked into sending money to someone she met online named “Frank.” At first, their messages were full of love, but they soon turned into instructions for Laura to do illegal things, like making fake profiles on dating apps and opening fake bank accounts.

As time passed, Laura grew suspicious and scared. She realized she was in too deep and couldn’t get out. She felt she had no choice but to keep doing what she was told, even though it led to financial ruin and, ultimately, her death.

Her daughter, Kelly Gowe, believes her mother fell victim to threats or felt she had no other option. She thinks Laura was lonely and searching for companionship, which made her vulnerable to the scam.




Laura Kowal with daughter Kelly Gowe

How did Laura Kowal become a victim of online fraud?

After Laura Kowal lost her husband William Kowal, she moved to Galena for a fresh start. There, she made friends, enjoyed activities like golfing and working at a boutique, and spent time with her dog, Effie. But she missed having someone special in her life.

In 2018, She tried online dating to find companionship. She met “Frank Borg” on Match.com, who seemed like a nice guy with shared interests and experiences.

Frank claimed to be a businessman with roots in Sweden and the U.S. He seemed perfect for Kowal, sharing her background and experiences.

Their relationship blossomed quickly. Within days, they exchanged phone numbers and shared personal stories. Kowal trusted Frank completely, even though they hadn’t met in person. In just 12 days, she declared her love for him.

Laura’s daughter, Kelly, explained that her mom felt loved and happy with Frank like anyone would in such a situation.



Laura Kowal with her dog Effie

What did we find out about Laura Kowal?

Laura Kowal was born on August 29, 1962, to her mother Mary Constance, and father Richard Broulik in Iowa City, Iowa. She graduated from Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 1985 with a degree in Business Administration.

Throughout her career, Kowal worked in various management roles in healthcare, including at Unity Point in Dubuque, Iowa, Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin, Illinois, and Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights, Illinois.

In 2017, Laura retired and relocated to Galena where she enjoyed gardening, playing golf, and volunteering with her dog, Effie. She also worked part-time at local shops and cherished time spent with family and friends, both locally and during travels.


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Laura Kowal FAQs

Ques: Who was Laura Kowal’s husband?

Ans: Late. William Kowal.

Ques: What is the name of Laura Kowal’s daughter?

Ans: Kelly Gowe.

Ques: When was Laura Kowal found dead?

Ans: Laura was found dead on April 9, 2020.