"He ruined two lives," said Cheryl Oates, the victim's ex-wife. "He took Vince's life, and he ruined his life."
"It's gut-wrenching, coming from a mother, looking at that young boy," she said, saying she admired him for confessing so publicly. "You've got to respect him for that. I'm sorry. You do."
It's impossible to know the full measure of Cordle's motives. Was it self-interest? Sincere remorse? Perhaps some of both?
Ellingwood, now interactive director for a Seattle TV station, can envision it as part of a new, look-at-me world in which Internet celebrity is celebrated, regardless of the reason for it.
"Today, the only thing standing between any one of us and instant celebrity is our ability to create a message with resonance," he wrote.
"Cordle may view the death he caused as a personal opportunity, the mother of all Facebook timeline life events. He may lose a few years to prison, but he won the Internet and when he gets out, he'll have a chance to parlay this 15 minute shot of fame into a repeat. Only time will tell if his redemption story gets him onto 'Dancing With the Stars.' "