Widow of Texas IRS Building Terrorist Attack Victim Sues Widow of Killer

Monday, March 01, 2010
Vernon Hunter

After Andrew Joseph Stack III committed suicide by flying his plane into a federal building in Austin, Texas, on February 18, the media gave him a lot of coverage, and some people even labeled him a hero for his violent attack on the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). However, little attention was paid to the man who Stack killed, IRS employee Vernon Hunter.

Hunter, 68, was a veteran who served two tours of duty in Vietnam and spent twenty years in the military. He worked as a substitute teacher in El Paso, before going to work for the IRS. A church member, he left behind three children, three stepchildren and seven grandchildren.
Members of Hunter’s family have said publicly they don’t blame Stack’s family for the tragedy. But Hunter’s widow, Valerie Hunter, has filed a lawsuit against Stack’s wife, Sheryl Mann Stack, claiming she should have done something to stop her husband.
Valerie Hunter’s suit says Sheryl Mann Stack had a duty to “avoid a foreseeable risk of injury to others.” It cites the fact that Stack’s wife and daughter spent the night before the incident at a hotel instead of their family home, to which Andrew Stack set fire the next day before taking off in his single-engine Cessna.
-David Wallechinsky, Noel Brinkerhoff
Crash Victim's Son: 'My Dad Would Have Helped Him' (by Tony Plohetski, Austin American-Statesman)
IRS Worker's Widow Sues Pilot's Wife (by Tony Plohetski, Austin American-Statesman)
Valerie Hunter v. Sheryl Mann Stack (District Court, Travis County, Texas) (pdf)


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