Charles Joseph Whitman (June 24, 1941 – August 1, 1966) was an American engineering student and former U.S. Marine, who killed 16 people and wounded 32 others in a mass shooting rampage in and...

Prior to the shootings at the University of Texas, Whitman had murdered both his wife and mother in Austin. The shooting would remain the...

Charles Joseph Whitman was born on June 24, 1941 in Lake Worth, Florida, the eldest of three sons born to Margaret E. (Hodges) and Charles Adolphus "C.A." Whitman, Jr. Whitman's father...

As a boy, Whitman was described as a polite, well-mannered child who seldom lost his temper. Whitman's academic achievements were...

Margaret Whitman was a devout Roman Catholic who raised her sons in the same faith. The Whitman brothers regularly attended Mass with their mother, and all three brothers served as altar boys at the...

Whitman Sr. was a firearms collector and enthusiast, who taught each of his sons from an early age how to...

At the age of eleven, Whitman joined the Boy Scouts and earned a total of twenty-one merit badges in fifteen months. In September 1953, at the age of twelve years and three months,...

On September 1, 1955, Whitman entered St. Ann's high school in West Palm Beach, where he was regarded as a...

At the age of sixteen, Whitman underwent a routine appendectomy and was hospitalized following a motorcycle accident. In February 1958, Whitman was hospitalized for surgery to remove a blood clot which had formed around his...

One month after his June 1959 graduation from high school (where he had graduated seventh in a class of seventy-two students), Whitman...

As Whitman traveled toward Parris Island, his father learned of his action and telephoned a branch of the federal...

Whitman's initial 18-month tour of duty in 1959 and 1960 was exemplary, and he earned a Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, a...

He earned high scores on the required examination, and the selection committee approved his enrollment at a preparatory school in Maryland. Whitman successfully completed courses in...

Whitman entered the mechanical engineering program at the University of Texas on September 15, 1961. Whitman was initially a poor student whose grades were largely unimpressive....

Whitman acquired a reputation as a practical joker in his years as an engineering student, but friends also noted he made some morbid and chilling statements. On one occasion in 1962, as he and a fellow student named Francis Schuck...

In February 1962, Whitman met Kathleen Frances Leissner, a teaching student two years his junior. Leissner was Whitman's first serious girlfriend. The couple courted for five...

On August 17, 1962, Whitman and Leissner married in a Catholic ceremony held in Leissner's hometown of Needville, Texas. The couple chose the 22nd wedding anniversary of Whitman's parents as the date for...

Although Whitman's grades improved somewhat during his second and third semesters at the University of Texas, the Marine Corps...

Whitman apparently resented the fact that his college studies had ended. He was automatically promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal. On one occasion during...

He had a reputation among his fellow Marines as an exemplary Marine, but Whitman continued to gamble during his time at Camp Lejeune. In November 1963, he...

In 1963, as he awaited his court martial, Whitman began to write a diary entitled "Daily Record of Charles J. Whitman". He covered his...

In December 1964, Whitman was honorably discharged from the Marines. He returned to the University of...

Two close friends of Whitman, John and Fran Morgan, later told the Texas Department of Public Safety that he had told them of...

In May 1966, Margaret Whitman announced her intention to divorce Whitman's father because of his physical abuse. The younger...

In Austin, Whitman's mother found work in a cafeteria and moved into her own apartment. She remained in close contact with Charles. Whitman's father later admitted to having spent over a...

On the eve of the shootings at the University Tower, Whitman wrote in his journal, reaffirming his love for his wife Kathy. These...

The day before the shootings, Whitman bought a pair of binoculars and a knife from a hardware store, and Spam from a 7-Eleven convenience store. He picked up his wife from her summer job...

At approximately 4:00 p.m. on July 31, Charles and Kathy Whitman visited their close friends John and Fran Morgan. They left the Morgans' apartment at 5:50 so that Kathy could get to her...

Whitman wrote that he requested an autopsy be conducted upon his body, to determine if there was a biological reason for his actions and increasing...

Just after midnight on August 1, Whitman drove to his mother's apartment at 1212 Guadalupe Street. After...

Whitman then returned to his home at 906 Jewell Street, where he killed his wife by stabbing her three times in the heart as she slept. He covered...

He also left instructions in the rented house requesting that two rolls of camera film be developed. Whitman also wrote personal notes...

Whitman last wrote on an envelope labeled, 'Thoughts For the Day,' in which he stored a collection of written...

At 5:45 a.m. on August 1, 1966, Whitman phoned his wife's supervisor at Bell System to explain that Kathy was ill and unable to work that day. He made a similar phone call to his mother's workplace five...

On the morning of August 1, Whitman rented a hand truck from Austin Rental Company and cashed $250 ($1800 in 2013 dollars) of worthless checks at the bank before driving to a hardware store, where he purchased a Universal...

Inside his garage, Whitman sawed off the barrel of the 12-gauge shotgun, and packed the weapon, together with a Remington...

At approximately 11:35 a.m., Whitman arrived at the University of Texas. Showing a security guard, Jack Rodman, false identification as a research assistant, he obtained a 40-minute parking...

Entering the Main Building, Whitman tried to activate the elevator. Vera Palmer, an employee, said it had not been...

Whitman lugged the dolly and equipment up the final flight of stairs to the hallway that led to a dog-legged stairway ascending to the rooms...

Moments later, an Austin couple named Cheryl Botts and Don Walden returned to the reception area; having been observing the view upon the observation deck. The couple encountered Whitman leaning across the couch, holding a rifle...

As he prepared to enter the observation deck, he saw two families: M. J. Gabour, his wife Mary and their teenage sons Mike and Mark and the boys' aunt and uncle, Marguerite and William Lamport, ascending...

Whitman closed and barricaded the door to the reception area. He then shot Edna Townsley in the left side of her head before walking onto the observation deck. The Tower has a vantage point 231 feet (70 m) above...

Following the sniper tradition of "one shot, one kill", Whitman never shot twice anyone who had fallen to the ground. The first shots fired by Whitman from the tower's outer deck came at approximately 11:48 a.m. He...

Whitman began to fire upon people walking on Guadalupe Street; he shot and wounded 17-year-old newspaper delivery boy Alex Hernandez, before...

On the corner of 24th and Guadalupe, Whitman shot and wounded two students, Abdul Khashab and his fiancee Janet Paulos, outside a dress shop. Khashab, a 26-year-old chemistry student from Iraq,...

Three Peace Corps trainees, Tom Herman, Roland Ehlke and David Mattson, were Whitman's next targets. The trio...

To the rear of the intersection of 24th and Guadalupe Street, Whitman targeted two 21-year-olds, Oscar Royuela and Irma Garcia, as the pair walked toward the university's biology laboratory. Shot...

Directly in front of the entrance to the West Mall on Guadalupe Street, two 18-year-old students named Paul...

A block north of where Sonntag and Rutt were killed, Whitman shot and killed Harry Walchuk, a 38-year-old doctoral student and father of six. He next...

Having seen several students shot in the South Mall, a history professor was the first to telephone the Austin Police Department at 11:52 a.m.; four minutes after Whitman had first fired from the...

Students and university staff worked to assist and move the wounded to safety, risking their lives. One student later recalled, "That was...

The shootings and news of the sniper caused panic in and around the University. All active police officers in Austin were ordered to the campus. Off-duty officers, Travis County...

Approximately 20 minutes after first shooting from the observation deck, Whitman began to encounter return fire from both the police and other armed...

Three officers who responded to reports of the sniper were Ramiro Martinez, Houston McCoy and Jerry Day. Prior to advancing upon the tower, McCoy had seen his colleague...

Accompanied by 40-year-old civilian Allen Crum—whom the trio encountered as they ran toward the...

Beneath the stairwell leading to the reception area, Officer Martinez saw the body of a teenage boy, Mark Gabour....

Stepping outside the south door at approximately 1:24 p.m., Martinez, closely followed by McCoy, proceeded...

As Whitman sat crouched with his back positioned on the north wall, and looking in the northwest corner area of the observation deck where Crum's shot was heard, Martinez jumped...

Martinez threw down his now-empty revolver and grabbed McCoy's shotgun, running to Whitman's prone body and firing point...

On August 5, 1966, Houston McCoy appeared before the Travis County Grand Jury to give testimony McCoy was the only officer called to testify. At the hearing, Whitman's death was...

On August 2, an autopsy was conducted upon the body of Charles Whitman by a Dr. Chenar (a Neuropathologist at Austin State Hospital) at the Cook Funeral Home in Austin, Texas. The...

Although Whitman had been prescribed drugs, and was in possession of Dexedrine (which a friend...

In the days following the shootings, Texas Governor John Connally commissioned a task force of professionals to examine the physical autopsy findings and material related to Whitman's...

Following a three-hour hearing on August 5, the Commission said that the findings of Dr. Chenar's initial autopsy conducted on August 2 had been in error; that a...

Forensic investigators have theorized that the tumor may have been pressed against the nearby amygdalae regions of his...

The Connally Commission recommended that the university and state aid the wounded and those affected by the events. Aid to survivors and the...

A joint funeral service for Charles Whitman and his mother, Margaret, was held at their family's home parish of Sacred Heart in Lake Worth on August 5, 1966. The Catholic service was...

Investigating officers found that Whitman had visited several University doctors in the year prior to the shootings, who had prescribed him various medications....

Whitman met with Maurice Dean Heatly, the staff psychiatrist at the University of Texas Health Center, on March 29, 1966. Whitman...

During Whitman's command of the tower, the university learned that the shooter might have been a student. Once his identity was released, officials...

At the time of the shootings, the Austin Police Department had no specialized tactical unit to...

Following the shootings, the Tower observation deck was closed to visitors. In 1967, the University of Texas spent $5,000 to...

In January 2003, the University of Texas committed $200,000 and sought another $800,000 to redesign the "Memorial Garden" dedicated to recognize the...

In 2008, on the 42nd anniversary of the attacks, the following names were added to a plaque on an Austin...


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