Jerry Hicks might have been the best spiritual marketer ever. Strangely, though, mystery shrouds most of his life. What happened before he married his fifth or sixth wife, Esther, gets scrambled among aliases and phony tales about wealth and poverty. No official record has been found for his death, leaving both Jerry Hicks bio and his obituary a blank.
Let's try clearing it up a little.
Jerry Hicks or Jerry Hickson?
The questions that unlock this secret may really be: who was Jerry Hicks and how did he get through sixty years, leaving barely a trace, before wrecking Esther’s marriage to Richard and riding her and the law of attraction to riches on Abraham’s back?
In all the fuss over Jerry Hicks’ death from leukemia and the leading edge marketing of his illness, the story of his life seems to have gotten even more lost. Check that. It’s been lost for a long time, probably deliberately, but why?
Here’s what we don’t know about Jerry Hicks:
(Note for some intriguing information that came in after the original publication of this article, see below.)
- What was his real name? Before latching onto the law of attraction as a vehicle for fame and fortune, he used at least one other name, Jerry Hickson, according to him, while performing as a folk artist. His past’s astonishing invisibility was helped along by numerous aliases.
- When did he learn about the law of attraction? He claimed that it came out of thin air from "Abraham," Esther's channeled ghost, but a trademark claim on it didn’t fly. "Law of Attraction" and associated buzz words had been around for nearly a hundred years. What the heck made him think he could get away with it?
- What did he do before meeting Esther, taking on the law of attraction and launching Abraham? According to the Abraham-Hicks website, strangely the only place on Earth not yet aware of his death, “Jerry’s life reads like a celebrity bio: circus performer, juggler, boxer, singer, gymnast, radio show host, comedian, millionaire entrepreneur.” But nobody can find records of any of these activities. Jerry answered a journalist’s challenge once by claiming Rip Taylor as one celebrity (a minor one at that) with whom he’d worked in his own celebrity past. Rip Taylor said he’d never heard of Jerry Hicks, “and I remember everyone.”
- Jerry Hicks claimed he worked as an acrobat in Cuba. Spiritually, his gymnastics were legendary all over the place. As a circus performer, we can give him that too, especially if we’re talking about something more like a carnival act, prestidigitation, etc. Abraham-Hicks skeptic, Kyra, was done impressive research on his and Esther’s deft performances. But if he was a “millionaire entrepreneur,” as the website claims, why were he, Esther and Tracy living in a rented apartment in Fresno when Abraham seized Esther’s voice, mind and hands? Did Abraham show them the secret of the law of attraction to lift them out of the dreaded middle class? Why would they need the spooky, pompous entities if Jerry was already such a commercial blockbuster?
- How old was he? Really. He confessed to 87, but knowledgeable sources tell us he shaved a few years off, roughly five. Did those five years vanish with the rest of his biography? More important, has anyone seen a birth certificate? A death certificate or a public obituary mind shed some light on the secrets too.
- What happened to his first four (admitted) wives and the fiancee he ditched to land Esther as number five (or six)? Why don’t any of them ever come out of the closet and talk about him? He makes no bones about calling them tumultuous and "dead end relationships," but what made them shut up, disappear or both? Where are the skeletons hidden?
- Were his children “dead end relationships” too? (Tracy’s father was Esther’s previous husband, Richard. Jerry has at least two of his own out there.) How come they’re not talking, pro or con, about Dad? Aren’t they miffed at not being told “the secret” and sharing the riches?
- In what sounds like a low end soap opera, Jerry hooked up with Esther after divorcing Trish and getting engaged to someone else while she was still married and living with Richard and Tracy. What was going on before that? From what we know of the sketchy details of his life with Trish, he enjoyed the benefits of a robust Amway operation (inherited from her family) but that doesn’t explain the claim of “building a multi-million-dollar business operation engaging over 100,00 people.” Surely he wasn’t claiming to have built Amway, although it’s not much more far-fetched than the one about Abraham’s hijacking Esther. He and Trish were in an upper tier at Amway, but not the top. So, was that just a clever use of words (what does “engaging” mean here?), or is there really some giant enterprise out there which he secretly built and nobody knows anything about? What happened to it, and how did his improvised family end up in a rented apartment in Fresno?
The photograph shown here is Jerry HIcks with wife #4 (or #5), Trish, with whom he shared success at Amway, proselytizing on "Think and Grow Rich" ideas. Esther Hicks was Trish's bookkeeper. He and Trish were divorced and Jerry had already become engaged to someone else when he and Esther, still married to and living with Richard, were caught in an affair. Two weeks after Esther's divorce, they were married in Nevada. Somewhere, there is more to know
That’s not all of what we don’t know, but you get the picture. Jerry’s history before Esther, the law of Attraction and Abraham is obscured by something. Maybe we don’t know his real name, and maybe he used more than two. In any case, it isn’t easy to erase six decades of public records, including marriages and the births of children. The task would have been too large. The facts are there, but hidden behind some simpler gimmick.
Jerry trail leads down a road of other identities and multiple names. I’m guessing, but how else do you wipe out all but twenty-five years of an eighty-four year lifespan?
What Do We Know About Jerry Hicks?
Not as much as you think. Even the segments of his life with Esther, before Abraham-Hicks, the law of attraction, The Secret and after, are obscured with misleading mumbo jumbo, suggesting someone with a gift for mounting false facades.
Jerry met Esther while she worked at his wife’s bookkeeper. Whether the relationship took seed while Esther still worked for Trish or after the divorce, we don’t know. What we do know is that Esther’s husband discovered their affair when he found her car parked in a motel lot. Jerry was engaged to wife-to-be #5 at the time, which probably explains why they couldn’t nestle in his sixty-year-old's bachelor pad.
Of course, neither Esther nor Jerry tell this story, but it’s confirmed. Their only explanation is that Jerry had "dead-end relationships" and Richard was “controlling.” His controlling nature probably had issues with her sleeping around, shame on him. We don’t know if Jerry’s fiancee #5 became “dead end” before or after he hooked up with Esther. Maybe this most recent dead end will speak up some day.
Two years after their marriage and after researching Seth, an entity much like Abraham and channeled by Jane Roberts, but much smarter than Abraham (Seth, for example, never had the illusion that modern humans roamed the plains in the time of the dinosaurs or that string theory was a memory system best illustrated by Uncle Billy’s use of it in It’s A Wonderful Life.) and after taking a session with Sheila Gillette and her channeled entity, Theo, Abraham seized Esther and made them rich, as the story is told.
You won’t be shocked to learn that Abraham had a lot of features in common with Seth, Theo, Jane and Sheila. Abraham was in the spirit world and happened to choose Esther, just as Seth chose Jane and Theo chose Sheila, to be the vessel of “infinite wisdom” from teachers whose only interest was in helping “limited humans.”
At great sacrifice to themselves, as many Abraham-Hicks followers insist, Jerry and Esther followed these examples in selling that wisdom in private sessions and public appearances. According to the Abraham-Hicks website where there is also a convenient store for buying their law of attraction products, “These two fun-loving adventure-seekers are currently breathing in huge lungfuls of joy as they figure-eight across the United States in their rock star monster bus, following the good weather, meeting friends along the way and enabling as many people as possible to visit with Abraham.”
Phew! Talk about sacrifice! Jerry's dead and still has to breath "huge lungsful of joy."
We don’t know the details about how Esther and Jerry gave birth to Abraham, and maybe that’s a secret too, even though we do have an incoherent story they published that no one with a mental age over ten could except, unless delusional already.
It went from intimate performances for friends, Esther and Jerry claim, although not one of these friends has stepped up to verify one of them, and grew into crowd-pleasing live audience performances.
Jerry rolled along on his wife’s Abraham performances, writing books and editing transcripts for sale to followers not fortunate or wealthy enough to pay to be in attendance. They even thoughtfully set up subscriptions for those in need of hearing “the teachings of Abraham” on a regular basis.
Shielded and nourished by fawning TV host, Oprah Winfrey, and wildly endorsed, like every other writer from Louise Hay’s publishing empire, by Public Television’s Wayne Dyer, Jerry and Esther rode Rhonda Byrne’s coattails into the New Age cash cow production, The Secret. Not to be outdone after a unpleasant separation from Byrne, Esther and Jerry came up with their own, Introducing Abraham - The Secret Behind "The Secret", feeling it was their responsibility to get the truth out, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. More or less.
Because the invention of Abraham bonded them like asymmetrical Siamese twins from different mothers, there were never two separate people living their own lives thereafter. They were together 24X7, in their monster bus or in one of their plush residences. This shielded Jerry even further.
‘Till Death Did Them Part, The Law Of Attraction Malfunctions
Given the circumstances surrounding the last year of Jerry Hicks’ life, it seems that the end will surrounded by as much diversion and misdirection as were his early years.
The little we know about Jerry’s life suggests he had a relentless tendency to con. Even when inclined to talk straight, he was hushed by Esther, as we saw when they agreed to sit for an interview with a British newspaper when eager to break into new territory overseas. They never did that again, risking only controlled “interviews” on YouTube and with the awestruck and undiscerning Oprah Winfrey.
The public portion of Jerry Hicks glide down to the end was launched with an email blast, carrying his signature, that strained to put a spider bite as the cause of his having begun “heavy chemotherapy.”
Although Esther would later claim, without opening the door to a rebuttal, that everyone understood that “heavy chemotherapy” meant cancer. Not so. Comments on Abraham-Hicks forums at the time argued angrily that such was not the case. One explained that taking aspirin was a form of chemotherapy. The true believers were allowed to hang onto the hope that Jerry’s cancer and his immediate choice of conventional medicine didn’t mean what it appeared to mean: even Jerry and Esther knew that the teachings of Abraham were nonsense, dangerous nonsense, when it came to health and death.
How, many wondered, did the law of attraction come to deliver Jerry Hicks an incurable leukemia? Why did he seek such a death through his “vibration” and thoughts? Esther was mute on the subject.
As disturbing as all this was to the law of attraction camp, it exposed one more secret. Certainly inadvertent was Jerry’s writing that he need to put back “fifteen pounds” of flesh. So, the illness has been severe much longer than the month claimed, unless he lost the pounds surgically removing 10% of his body.
Comparing email blasts from the group the wonderfully funny Cosmic Connie calls “Abrascam” reveals that, at the time of their most recent message to followers, when Esther and Jerry Hicks claimed to be enjoying some wonderful time off, he had already begun his first round of chemotherapy.
But the marketing went on and workshops continued at a reduced frequency, leaving Esther and Jerry time “to play” in the intervals. Evidence suggests that much of this play involved alternative cancer therapies, including stem cell replacement, that may have lead the couple to South Korea for treatment.
Jerry’s last public appearance among other than family occurred during a Skype test Abraham-Hicks Publishing thought might lead them to lucrative webcasts. But it was limited. Only Jerry’s voice, described as sounding “old and sick” by a participant was heard. Esther, on the other hand, showed up in a brightly colored outfit, like what she normally wore in private life, not the dowdy country preacher get up she’d always used on stage.
The dress was a hit, turning it into a sort of focus group, and Esther recognized her followers compliments by continuing to dress like a normal human being at workshops.
For publicity purposes, the “Abrascam” promoters got pictures of Jerry out with the family for a balloon ride. Released in September and apparently hoping to present a healthy and buoyant image of the, then, critically ill man, they ended up seeming crudely and cruelly exploitative.
By this time, the upbeat email blasts with health updates, still never mentioning cancer, had ended, and after the balloon jaunt, so did all mention of Jerry Hicks until, strangely, five days after the date on which Esther claims he died. Workshops were canceled and Esther and Jerry withdrew.
Then, the day before Thanksgiving, Esther wrote a message that she sent by email to her followers that Jerry Hicks had “transitioned” on the previous Friday. Absent were her usual crude remarks about “croaking,” made proudly when about anyone else, and never once did she remind us that, “It’s always good when the old ones go,” a phrase she to emphasize the value of their getting out of the way of a more capable younger generation.
Adding to the secret of much of Jerry Hicks’ life was that her message to followers had little to say about Jerry, just some fond references to his being “sweet.” Rather than a death notice, the message was mostly about Esther. Her extreme narcissism failed to let down even with the announcement of his death.
But What About Jerry Hicks’ Life After Death?
No death certificate or obituary for Jerry Hicks has been found by researchers or offered by Esther. Why would such a thing be hidden or is the con so addictive it survives physical death? Maybe Esther is chronically unable to expose event the simplest truths. What have they to hide?
A good question would be when and where did Jerry die, assuming he did, an assumption not so simple when it comes to this pair. Having announced that he was dead and admitted at last that the cause was cancer, what was there to gain from obscuring the details?
And why wait five days? Was there a name other than “Jerry Hicks” on the death certificate, and where did his death occur. Information quickly removed from the Internet suggested a trip to South Korea in search of a miracle cure. Was the smoke screen just one last dodge over questions about why Jerry never followed the teachings of Abraham to a cure and how the law of attraction led him to an illness and death that he openly did not want?
Maybe Jerry Hicks will tell us himself. In an event weird even for this crowd, Esther began channeling him publicly during her Abraham-Hicks workshop shows. So far, he has only appeared in asides that Esther and her followers find witty. Maybe in future sessions, he’d tell us his real name and explain what became of those missing fifty years.
You know, I doubt it, but maybe...
Hot seat, anyone?
Additional information from Jerry Hicks' bio research.
(Thanks to Rachel Parker for her impressive research and the obvious conclusions (and some not so obvious) drawn from it.)
So far, six different names or aliases used by Jerry Hicks have been found:
Jerry S Hicks
Jerry Spencer Hicks
Jerry E Hicks
Jerry P Hicks
Gerald L Hicks
Gerald L Life Hicks
Gerald L Thomas
The first three names have been used in connection with Abraham Hicks Publications. The final three seem to have been used during his association in the mid-1950s with Nova Arlene Thomas, a woman the records suggest had at least one son with him and for whom he bought a house in Roseville, California. Nova Thomas died in 1995 at age 63.
At this point, all we have are some facts from public records. You're free to speculate as to why anyone would want to use so many names, included invented middle initials and changed surnames. And this picks up only in the mid-1950s when he emerged as a homebuyer. The period from there to his marriage, Amway career and divorce from Patricia Hicks. Patricia "Trish" appears to be still living at age 90. Her place of residence is known but will be withheld.
Amusingly, Jerry Hicks older brother, Richard Joseph Hicks, also seems to have used an alias: Dick A. Hicks.
Finally, for now, in the hunt to complete Jerry Hicks biography, I have to admit an error. I believed and wrote that Jerry Hicks was at least 87 years old. In fact, he was born in June, 1927, making him 83 at the admitted onset of his final illness and 84 when he died.