Bishop Castle going back to original owner

Posted at 12:48 PM, Sep 30, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-30 14:48:19-04

A southern Colorado landmark is being returned to its original owner.

A judge has ruled that Bishop Castle should be put back in Jim Bishop's name, according to our partners at KRDO-TV.

"I'm so excited, if you lit me with a match I would explode!" Phoebe Bishop, Jim's wife, told the TV station.

The Bishops said David Merrill tricked them into turning over the deed when Jim became ill with a rare form of cancer, KRDO-TV reported.

"We were at our worst, our most vulnerable, and David Merrill said he would be a trustee and help us with the paperwork," Phoebe said. "Next thing we know, he won't let us do anything with the castle and he's claiming it is his."

"It never should have left our family and now it will always stay in our family," the Bishop's daughter, Donita Bishop, said.

Bishop Castle's Facebook page said the judge's order will be recorded in Custer County next week and the title will be put back in Jim's name.

Jim Bishop spent more than 40 years building the stone "castle" at 12705 State Highway 165 in Rye near Wetmore and Lake Isabel in southern Colorado. He takes donations from visitors who want to explore the castle. Learn more about the castle on the Bishop Castle website.

The family says it still has around $20,000 in legal fees to pay off. There will be a meeting Friday, Oct. 2, at 6 p.m. at the Pikes Peak Harley Davidson to brainstorm how to raise funds for the family.