Local woman whose husband tried to kill her with a pipe bomb among 'Courage Award' recipients

Connie Hoagland survived 2010 murder attempt

SAN DIEGO - A local woman who faced the ultimate betrayal when her husband tried to kill her using a pipe bomb was honored Thursday with a Citizens of Courage Award.

Connie Hoagland was one of eight San Diegans recognized with the award during a ceremony held as part of National Crime Victims' Rights Week.

Hoagland's nightmare began in September 2010 when a violent explosion rocked a Rancho San Diego neighborhood.

Hoagland tried to start her truck outside of the daycare center where she worked. What she didn't know then was her spouse of 27 years was the one who had tried to kill her.

"I knew he wouldn't confess and I just persevered on and just thought, you know what, I'm not going to be afraid," Hoagland said.

Hoagland suffered severe injuries to both legs, and doctors had to put a rod into her right one.

The story drew national attention, and details later emerged that showed how her husband, Larry, had been having a secret cross-country affair leading up to and even after the bombing.

Connie Hoagland said the experience taught her something.

"I learned that it's hard when you're in the middle of it, you just don't see how bad it is," she said.

Despite computer records showing Larry Hoagland researched bomb-making and phone numbers in his wallet tied to cellphone detonators, Hoagland proclaimed his innocence until the day he was sentenced to life in prison.

What does she think of him now?

"I just try to let it go. Forgiveness is a big part of it. I just don't want him having any hold on me," Connie Hoagland said.

At Wednesday's awards ceremony, Hoagland demonstrated just how well she has healed, saying, "I can walk!"  

Hoagland beat the odds, and it is her strength now and in court during the trial that inspired District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis to give Hoagland the award.

"It's a scary thing for people that have already been victimized to go to court," said Dumanis.

Hoagland said she doesn't think what she did was courageous.

"It's a great honor and humbling thing because I feel like I just didn't do that much, you know, just doing the right thing," said Hoagland.

Hoagland said her faith, family and friends helped her get through the ordeal.

She also said she and her three kids are doing great.

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