Steve Groene, whose children fell victim to serial murder, dies of cancer at 62

(Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)

Steve Groene, whose children fell victim to a serial murderer and molester in 2005, died early Monday. He was 62. 

According to our partners at The Spokesman-Review, the cause of death was stage 4 lung cancer. 

Groene lived in Coeur d'Alene and endured multiple battles with cancer and chemotherapy that left him without vocal cords. 

Groene's family was struck by serial killer Joseph Duncan III in May of 2005 when Duncan broke into the home where Groene's three children were living with their mother. 

Duncan killed the children's mother, Brenda Groene, her boyfriend Mark McKenzie and 13-year-old Slade Groene.

Duncan abducted 8-year-old Shasta Groene and 9-year-old Dylan Groene, taking them to a campsite in Montana where he tortured them for weeks before killing Dylan. 

Duncan was arrested when he brought Shasta back to the Coeur d'Alene area leading to a waitress recognizing her. 

Duncan remains on death row after his conviction. 

In Steve Groene's final years, he drew public attention from feuding with the managers of Shasta Groene Charitable Trust when they were seeking to evict him from his home. 

A judge sided with the trustees stating that Groene must sell or rent the house to benefit Shasta who lives in the Boise area.