Timothy McVeigh (April 23, 1968- June 11, 2001) is popularly known as the convicted bomber of the Oklahoma Bombings which occurred on April 19, 1995. As a child, McVeigh was mild-mannered and well liked by his family and neighbors. He was closest to his grandfather Eddie who also gave Timmy his first gun, a .22 caliber rifle. His mother, Mickey left his father in 1986 and the couple divorced soon after.
McVeigh was surprisingly religious and often attended the daily mass. McVeigh and his father were devout Roman Catholics.
After graduating high school with honors, he went on to work at Burger King nearby while studying the Second Amendment, the right to bear arms. He was particularly interested in the book “The Turner Diaries” in which the protagonist’s disdain for gun control laws leads him to truck-bombing the Washington FBI headquarters. Another book “Red Dawn” in which the characters defend their country against terrorists lead McVeigh to believe that he needed to stock up on ammunition, weapons etc for future attacks.
McVeigh became a security guard at the age of 20 for an armored car company. This was great job for a young man but McVeigh had even bigger ambitions. His love for guns, hunting and camping at an early age lead to him join the army on May 24, 1988. He befriended Terry Lynn Nichols and Michael Fortier during his basic training at the army. McVeigh was a disciplined and focused soldier and wanted to be a Green Beret. However, the Gulf War began in 1991 and McVeigh was called to it.
In the Gulf War he was a decorated US Army Veteran having been awarded Bronze Star Medal, being a top scoring gunner and serving in Fort Riley, Kansas before the Operation Desert Storm. After his return from war he once again wanted badly to join the Army’s elite special forces ,“The Green Beret”. His lack of physicl fitness forced him to leave the Army on December 31, 1991. Before his early discharge many officers complained that McVeigh was having emotional difficulties and seemed troubled.
After his honorable discharge in 1992, McVeigh experimented with different activities. First as a security guard in Pendleton and then selling bumber stickers during the Waco Seige. His motivation for the bombing was also said to be a revenge for the actions of the U.S government at Waco and Ruby Ridge. His deep anger, resentment, paranoia and childhood difficulties lead him to become involved in using and manufacturing methamphetamine. Meth often causes paranoid ideation, hallucination and in some case lead to a pathological state of mind. His meth use is also attributed to his maladjustment to civilian life. After having seen men die on both sides of the war he had grown increasingly dissatisfied with the US government. He also realized that his accomplishments in the war meant nothing to the rest of the world.
On June 11, 2001, at the U.S. Federal Penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana he was executed by lethal injection.
- Timothy McVeigh. (2007, April 21). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 10:45, April 21, 2007, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Timothy_McVeigh&oldid=124496763
- Timothy McVeigh. (2007). All Things Horror. Retrieved 10:45, April 21, 2007, from