Former Marine Charles Whitman Killed 16, Injured 31, While Shooting From Texas Tower

On August 1, 1966, Charles Joseph Whitman opened fire from the University of Texas, c 31 others. Charles was on the 28th floor (the observation deck) when he began firing, which lasted for 06 minutes.

Whitman was finally shot and killed by Austin police officers Sergeant Ramiro Martinez and Patrolman Houston McCoy who had raced to the top of the tower despite the danger of being shot too. Charles Whitman was buried in the Hillcrest Memorial Park in Lake Worth, Florida on August 5, 1966 and since he was a former Marine, an American flag was draped over his casket.

Charles Whitman’s father was a domineering wife-beater who also beat his sons, including Charles. The father was self-employed, strict, and expected his family to be perfect in everything they did, however, Charles senior was constantly disappointed and used resorted to violence.

Not only did Charles Whitman kill his wife Kathleen before shooting on top of the tower, but he also murdered his own mother. In a note written after his mother’s murder he explained that she was constantly beat and berated by her husband (Charles’ father) and if he didn’t kill her she would find her way back to him and the cycle of violence would continue.





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