Alexis Somers was instrumental in the fight for justice for her mother, Michele MacNeill, who was murdered by her father, Dr. Martin MacNeill. She uncovered an affair between her father and Gypsy Willis. Today, she is a doctor and married with twins.
Investigators initially believed MacNeill died from a heart condition, according to her autopsy report. But the chief medical examiner later reassessed her case and determined that prescription drugs were likely a factor in her death, which he said “drew suspicions,” according to the amended autopsy.
ABC 20/20 is revisiting the case in an encore episode, “The Perfect Nanny.” It airs Friday, August 27, 2021 at 9 p.m. Eastern time.
Here’s what you need to know:
Alexis Somers Changed Her Name to Erase Her Father’s Memory & Became a Family Doctor
Alexis Somers fought for justice for her mother until her father was behind bars, she told ABC News. She worked to erase the memory of her father after his conviction, removing his name from her mother’s tombstone and changing her own last name to her mother’s maiden name, she told ABC.
“All she cared about, I mean, is her family. I mean, her family was her life,” Somers told ABC.
She went to medical school, and now has her own practice in family medicine, she told ABC.
“I wanted to graduate having my mom’s maiden name. I don’t want to be Dr. MacNeill,” Somers told ABC. “I don’t want to have any part of my dad.”
Her biography for her work as a medical doctor says she enjoys “reading, traveling, cooking, sleeping and most of all spending time with her husband and children, including toddler twins.”
She received her medical degree from Touro University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Nevada and completed her residency at Utah Valley Family Medicine in Provo, Utah, her bio says. Her undergraduate degree was in history, which she obtained from Brigham Young University. She obtained her master’s degree in the history of medicine from Imperial College in London, United Kingdom.
Alexis Somers Believed Her Father Killed Her Mother as Soon as She Learned She Was Dead
Alexis Somers told ABC News that as soon as she learned her mother was dead, she knew her father had killed her. She recalled a phone call with Martin MacNeill after she called her mother to check on her. He answered the phone instead of her mother, she told ABC.
“He said, ‘Your mom. She’s in the tub. She’s not breathing. I’ve called an ambulance.’ And then he hung up. I just started driving to the airport and I was just screaming. Just screaming. He killed her. That was my first instinct.”
Michele MacNeil’s younger daughter, Ada MacNeill, found her lying lifeless in a bathtub after Martin MacNeill picked her up from school, according to ABC News. The girl told her older sister about the traumatic experience, Somers told ABC.
“Ada said my dad picked her up from school and told her to, ‘Go check on your mother,’” Somers told ABC. “So she ran in, just calling, ‘Mommy! Mommy!’ And my dad stayed in the kitchen while she went into the bathroom and found her.”
The young girl also played an important role at her father’s trial. She drew a picture for investigators to show exactly how she found her mother in the bathtub.