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You may know him for his stock-picking strategies, staying ahead of the bulls, and out of the way of the bears. But Jim Cramer‘s big break happened far from Wall Street, in Tallahassee, Florida, at a sorority house, which became the scene of a grisly crime at the hands of a notorious serial killer.

Following his humble start as a newspaper reporter, along the way Cramer became a magazine writer, a lawyer, a hedge-fund manager, an online publisher and a best-selling author. And he did it all while honoring his parents’ wishes. Here’s Jim Cramer’s First Big Break.