For the first time, Johnathan Hillstrand, star of Discovery Channel's "Deadliest Catch," is talking about how he says he was deceived by a heartless stranger.
Last June, a woman claiming to be an Indiana nurse began communicating with Hillstrand over Twitter.
"So I start talking to her, she starts saying, 'I love you,' and stuff. I sort of got scared, and she was going to come meet me twice," he said.
Instead, the woman stood him up twice in Anchorage, so he called things off.
It was later that Hillstrand learned that a family friend and neighbor in Maple Valley was in a life-or-death situation. Hillstrand stepped in to help, making a 20 minute video for 20-year-old Thomas Doty, who was battling a rare form of bone cancer.
Hillstrand asked his fans to help, too.
"I was trying to help them out to raise money for their son," he said.
The woman who had stood him up earlier contacted him again, saying she would donate $250,000 for Doty's treatment.
Then came a month of wild tales and fake checks, but no actual money. Doty eventually got the treatment he needed, but it was too late. He died in December.
The entire incident has left Hillstand with a bad taste in his mouth.
"I hate the Internet, and I pretty much hate people because of this," he said.
But Hillstrand said the woman's celebrity obsession continued, even after Doty's death.
"She took pictures in front of my house here, and pictures in front of my store in Alaska," he said.
Hillstrand and the Doty family feel the woman is partially responsible for Thomas' death. Authorities are investigating, but there are few laws on the books that apply, because it seems the woman did not benefit financially.
"I can't believe there at not any repercussion for this. It makes me sick," Hillstrand said.
Earlier this month, a woman in Florida was so moved by Doty's story that she did some online digging and thinks she has figured out who the mystery woman is. Meanwhile, the Doty family have another problem -- their Maple Valley home is scheduled for foreclosure auction on Friday.