|Birth Day:||April 23, 1968|
|Death Date:||Jun 11, 2001 (age 33)|
As per our current Database, Timothy McVeigh died on Jun 11, 2001 (age 33).
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He worked as a security guard, where he would often tell his co-workers how much he disliked the government.
McVeigh was born on April 23, 1968, in Lockport, New York, the only son and the second of three children of Irish Americans Mildred "Mickey" Noreen (née Hill) and William McVeigh. In 1866, McVeigh's great-great-grandfather Edward McVeigh emigrated from Ireland and settled in Niagara County. After their parents divorced when McVeigh was ten years old, he was raised by his father in Pendleton, New York.
McVeigh was raised Roman Catholic. During his childhood, he and his father attended Mass regularly. McVeigh was confirmed at the Good Shepherd Church in Pendleton, New York, in 1985. In a 1996 interview, McVeigh professed belief in "a God", although he said he had "sort of lost touch with" Catholicism and "I never really picked it up, however I do maintain core beliefs." In McVeigh's biography American Terrorist, released in 2002, he stated that he did not believe in a hell and that science is his religion. In June 2001, a day before the execution, McVeigh wrote a letter to the Buffalo News identifying himself as agnostic. However, he took the Last Rites, administered by a priest, just before his execution. Father Charles Smith ministered to McVeigh in his last moments on death row.
In May 1988, at the age of 20, McVeigh enlisted in the United States Army and attended Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training at the U.S. Army Infantry School at Fort Benning, Georgia. While in the military, McVeigh used much of his spare time to read about firearms, sniper tactics, and explosives. McVeigh was reprimanded by the military for purchasing a "White Power" T-shirt at a Ku Klux Klan protest; they were objecting to black servicemen who wore "Black Power" T-shirts around a military installation (primarily Army).
McVeigh aspired to join the United States Army Special Forces (SF). After returning from the Gulf War, he entered the selection program, but washed out on the second day of the 21-day assessment and selection course for the Special Forces. McVeigh decided to leave the Army and was honorably discharged in 1991.
McVeigh later said he considered "a campaign of individual assassination," with "eligible" targets including Attorney General Janet Reno, Judge Walter S. Smith Jr. of Federal District Court, who handled the Branch Davidian trial; and Lon Horiuchi, a member of the FBI hostage-rescue team, who shot and killed Vicki Weaver in a standoff at a remote cabin at Ruby Ridge, Idaho, in 1992. He said he wanted Reno to accept "full responsibility in deed, not just words." Such an assassination seemed too difficult, and he decided that since federal agents had become soldiers, he should strike at them at their command centers. According to McVeigh's authorized biography, he decided that he could make the loudest statement by bombing a federal building. After the bombing, he was ambivalent about his act and the deaths he caused; as he said in letters to his hometown newspaper, he sometimes wished that he had carried out a series of assassinations against police and government officials instead.
In 1993, McVeigh drove to Waco, Texas, during the Waco siege to show his support. At the scene, he distributed pro-gun rights literature and bumper stickers bearing slogans such as, "When guns are outlawed, I will become an outlaw." He told a student reporter:
In April 1993, McVeigh headed for a farm in Michigan where former roommate Terry Nichols lived. In between watching coverage of the Waco siege on TV, Nichols and his brother began teaching McVeigh how to make explosives out of readily available materials; specifically, they combined household chemicals in plastic jugs. The destruction of the Waco compound enraged McVeigh and convinced him that it was time to take action. He was particularly angered by the government's use of CS gas on women and children; he had been exposed to the gas as part of his military training and was familiar with its effects. The disappearance of certain evidence, such as the bullet-riddled steel-reinforced front door to the complex, led him to suspect a cover-up.
McVeigh's anti-government rhetoric became more radical. He began to sell Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) hats riddled with bullet holes, and a flare gun that he said could shoot down an "ATF helicopter". He produced videos detailing the government's actions at Waco and handed out pamphlets with titles such as "U.S. Government Initiates Open Warfare Against American People" and "Waco Shootout Evokes Memory of Warsaw '43." He began changing his answering machine greeting every couple of weeks to various quotes by Patrick Henry, such as "Give me liberty or give me death." He began experimenting with making pipe bombs and other small explosive devices. The government imposed new firearms restrictions in 1994 which McVeigh believed threatened his livelihood.
On April 19, 1995, McVeigh drove the truck to the front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building just as its offices opened for the day. Before arriving, he stopped to light a two-minute fuse. At 09:02, a large explosion destroyed the north half of the building. It killed 168 people, including nineteen children in the day care center on the second floor, and injured 684 others.
On August 10, 1995, McVeigh was indicted on 11 federal counts, including conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, use of a weapon of mass destruction, destruction with the use of explosives, and eight counts of first-degree murder for the deaths of law enforcement officers. Psychiatrists concluded he had major depressive, narcissistic personality, and schizotypal personality disorders. On February 20, 1996, the Court granted a change of venue and ordered that the case be transferred from Oklahoma City to the District Court in Denver, to be presided over by District Judge Richard Paul Matsch.
McVeigh's accomplice Terry Nichols was convicted and sentenced in federal court to life in prison for his role in the crime. At Nichols' trial, evidence was presented indicating that others may have been involved. Several residents of central Kansas, including real estate agent Georgia Rucker and a retired Army NCO, testified at Terry Nichols' federal trial that they had seen two trucks at Geary Lake State Park, where prosecutors alleged the bomb was assembled. The retired NCO said he visited the lake on April 18, 1995, but left after a group of surly men looked at him aggressively. The operator of the Dreamland Motel testified that two Ryder trucks had been parked outside her Grandview Plaza motel where McVeigh stayed in Room 26 the weekend before the bombing. Terry Nichols is incarcerated at ADX Florence in Florence, Colorado.
On June 2, 1997, McVeigh was found guilty on all 11 counts of the federal indictment. Although 168 people, including 19 children, were killed in the April 19, 1995, bombing, murder charges were brought against McVeigh for only the eight federal agents who were on duty when the bomb destroyed much of the Murrah Building. Along with the eight counts of murder, McVeigh was charged with conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, using a weapon of mass destruction, and destroying a federal building. Oklahoma City District Attorney Bob Macy said he would file state charges in the other 160 murders after McVeigh's co-defendant, Terry Nichols, was tried. After the verdict, McVeigh tried to calm his mother by saying, "Think of it this way. When I was in the Army, you didn't see me for years. Think of me that way now, like I'm away in the Army again, on an assignment for the military."
On November 21, 1997, President Bill Clinton had signed S. 923, special legislation introduced by Senator Arlen Specter to bar McVeigh and other veterans convicted of capital crimes from being buried in any military cemetery. His body was cremated at Mattox Ryan Funeral Home in Terre Haute. His ashes were given to his lawyer, who "said that the final destination of McVeigh's remains would remain privileged forever." McVeigh had written that he considered having them dropped at the site of the memorial where the building once stood, but decided that would be "too vengeful, too raw, too cold." He had expressed willingness to donate organs, but was prohibited from doing so by prison regulations. Psychiatrist John Smith concluded that McVeigh was "a decent person who had allowed rage to build up inside him to the point that he had lashed out in one terrible, violent act." McVeigh's IQ was assessed at 126.
In a 1,200-word essay dated March 1998, from the federal maximum-security prison at Florence, Colorado, McVeigh claimed that the terrorist bombing was "morally equivalent" to U.S. military actions against Iraq and other foreign countries. The handwritten essay, submitted to and published by the alternative national news magazine Media Bypass, was distributed worldwide by the Associated Press on May 29, 1998. This was written in the midst of the 1998 Iraq disarmament crisis and a few months before Operation Desert Fox.
Michael and Lori Fortier were also considered accomplices, due to their foreknowledge of the bombing. In addition to Michael assisting McVeigh in scouting the federal building, Lori had helped McVeigh laminate a fake driver's license which was used to rent the Ryder truck. Fortier agreed to testify against McVeigh and Nichols in exchange for a reduced sentence and immunity for his wife. He was sentenced on May 27, 1998, to twelve years in prison and fined $75,000 for failing to warn authorities about the bombing. On January 20, 2006, Fortier was released for good behavior into the Witness Protection Program and given a new identity.
McVeigh's death sentence was delayed pending an appeal. One of his appeals for certiorari, taken to the Supreme Court of the United States, was denied on March 8, 1999. McVeigh's request for a nationally televised execution was also denied. An Internet company unsuccessfully sued for the right to broadcast the execution. At USP Florence ADMAX, McVeigh and Nichols were housed in what was known as "bomber's row". Ted Kaczynski, Luis Felipe, and Ramzi Yousef were also housed in this cell block. Yousef made frequent, unsuccessful attempts to convert McVeigh to Islam.
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) transferred McVeigh from USP Florence ADMAX to the federal death row at USP Terre Haute in Terre Haute, Indiana, in 1999. McVeigh dropped his remaining appeals, saying that he would rather die than spend the rest of his life in prison. On January 16, 2001, the BOP set May 16 as McVeigh's execution date. McVeigh said that his only regret was not completely destroying the federal building. Six days prior to his scheduled execution, the FBI turned over thousands of documents of evidence it had previously withheld to McVeigh's attorneys. As a result, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft announced McVeigh's execution would be stayed for one month. The execution date was reset for June 11. McVeigh invited conductor David Woodard to perform Requiem Mass music on the eve of his execution. While acknowledging McVeigh's "horrible deed", Woodard consented, intending to "provide comfort". McVeigh also requested a Catholic chaplain. His last meal consisted of two pints of mint chocolate chip ice cream.
During an interview in 2000 with Ed Bradley for television news magazine 60 Minutes, Bradley asked McVeigh for his reaction to the deaths of the nineteen children. McVeigh said:
McVeigh chose William Ernest Henley's poem "Invictus" as his final statement. Just before the execution, when he was asked if he had a final statement, he declined. Jay Sawyer, a relative of one of the victims, wrote, "Without saying a word, he got the final word." Larry Whicher, whose brother died in the attack, described McVeigh as having "a totally expressionless, blank stare. He had a look of defiance and that if he could, he'd do it all over again." McVeigh was executed by lethal injection at 7:14 a.m. on June 11, 2001, the first federal prisoner to be executed since Victor Feguer was executed in Iowa on March 15, 1963.
On April 26, 2001, McVeigh wrote a letter to Fox News, "I Explain Herein Why I Bombed the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City", which explicitly laid out his reasons for the attack. McVeigh read the novel Unintended Consequences (1996), and said that if it had come out a few years earlier, he would have given serious consideration to using sniper attacks in a war of attrition against the government instead of bombing a federal building.
Currently, Timothy McVeigh is 53 years, 6 months and 3 days old. Timothy McVeigh will celebrate 54th birthday on a Saturday 23rd of April 2022.
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