A Strange Demise

January 5, 2011 7:14 am

My reporter antenna perked up when news emerged early this week that the body of a former Bush Pentagon official and national security consultant had turned up in a Delaware landfill and was being ruled a homicide.

John P. Wheeler, who once was the national leader of MADD and spearheaded the creation of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, worked in Washington but lived in Wilmington. He was supposed to have traveled back home from DC on Amtrak last Tuesday. It doesn’t appear he ever made it home. His body was discovered in a nearby landfill on Friday, New Year’s Eve, in a batch of garbage not from Wilmington but from nearby Newark.

The circumstances of his disappearance and ultimate death of remain murky but what details are emerging suggest not the opening scenes to a political thriller but the sad and possibly troubled ending of a public life. Rachel Slajda has more.

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