WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

GREGG WENZEL HONORED


(This is an email from Gregg's very good friend Brian Tannebaum who never asks for credit for his tireless efforts in helping keep Gregg's memory alive.

On May 18, 2015 the United States Post Office in Monroe, New York was named after our fallen colleague Gregg David Wenzel. For those that didn’t know Gregg, he was born and raised in Monroe, New York, was a 1994 graduate of the University of Miami Law School, a former assistant public defender, former Florida Bar Counsel, and former CIA Agent, where he was killed in the line of duty on July 9, 2003 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia at the age of 33.

Gregg was a unique individual, and anyone that had the chance to know him, has a great story about him, and will probably tell you there was no one like him
It took his family 6 years to have his identity uncovered, and his name is now in the book that sits below the wall at the CIA where stars represent the fallen agents. Gregg’s star is number 81.

It took his family another 6 years to have Congress pass a bill naming the post office in Gregg’s hometown after him. President Obama signed the bill in December of 2014.
The ceremony had a full honor guard, and all the local first responders were there, Many retired veterans attended, Gregg’s parents and three sisters were there, and there was a large crowd of family and friends.

Prior to the ceremony, there was a story about it on the local news, and the T.V. and print media were in attendance.

Gregg’s congressman spoke, as well as a local Rabbi, several New York State Assemblymen, the Mayor of Monroe, several representatives from the Postal Service, and of course, very moving statements from Gregg’s parents Mitch and Gladys. As May 18 was also the day of the annual memorial service at the CIA in Langley, Virginia (where Gregg’s parents attend each year) the Director of the CIA sent a message which was read at the ceremony. The ceremony ended with the playing of Taps.


It was mentioned at the ceremony that of over 1500 post offices named after people since 1967, this was the first named after a fallen CIA Agent.
Another interesting note that moved the crowd - the number 18 represents “Chai” in the Jewish religion, or “good luck.” Gregg’s birthday is November 18, the ceremony was on the 18th, and his star number backwards (81) is 18.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

didnt gregg die in a car accident?

Anonymous said...

Has there been any follow up on the Judge Veronica Diaz situation?

Rumpole said...

I think the exact circumstances of Greg's death are not fully known and no matter how he died, he died overseas, serving his country, in a very dangerous job in a dangerous land. He is a hero pure and simple.

Anonymous said...

From the CNN report on the Penetta announcement from June, 2009:

"Wenzel left his job as an attorney to join the agency. He was 33 years old when the car he was riding in was hit by a drunken driver who to this day remains a fugitive."

As to the "81st star", from the same report:

" There are now 90 stars prominently displayed on the memorial wall in the spacious atrium of CIA headquarters, each commemorating an officer, like Wenzel, who died while serving the country.

The 90th star was added recently, but as with most of the victims, the person's name and nature of service will remain unknown to the public so as not to compromise secret operations."

Anonymous said...

Looks like they're going to sweep it under the rug. What else is new. Sayfie and Soto don't like bad publicity. Any word, Rump?

Anonymous said...

Great to know this. Don't let the light go out Brian. You are a good friend.

Anonymous said...

I knew him personally. He was good man and a credit to his family, his profession and his nation.

Robin Faber

Anonymous said...

In perpetuum gratis.

Anonymous said...

He could have easily been killed in Miami by one of our drunken drivers. If he was, no plaque. But that does not take away from his service. Going from a PD defending guilty thugs to the CIA is very cool. Too bad he had such an abrupt untimely ending with a drunk driver.

Anonymous said...

Hey Ovalle:

An elected official who is paid more than three times the median income for Miami Dade families to work less than 40 hours a week is apparently skipping work.

She is also sentencing men and women to spend years locked in cages for using illegal drugs or misusing alcohol and there is a rumor she herself is doing the same.

You represent one of the nation's most famous newspapers and your sole responsibility is to cover the building where this elected official works.

Maybe this is a news worthy story? Maybe the voting public actually RELIES on you to report this story?

Anonymous said...

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/business/article21599697.html

Anonymous said...

Greg was a great guy who died serving our country. He deserves all of the credit he gets and more.

BTDT

PS----If you believe that he was killed by a drunk driver, I have a bridge to sell you.

Anonymous said...

Great post heading into Memorial Day. I only knew him in passing but these stories always bring a tear to my eyes.
Thank you Brian.
And than you Gregg.

George Frobisher said...

Good guy B.Tannebaum. A few points, if Rumpole will allow. 1) A CNN or other media report of a "car accident" should not necessarily be taken as true, as the Agency does not typically disclose the details of its missions. 2) A minor editing quibble: employees in the clandestine service working under non-official cover for the Directorate of Operations are "officers" not "agents."; Wenzel is a true American hero.