Geithner to visit IRS workers in Austin today
Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and Internal Revenue Service Commission Douglas Shulman will travel to Austin on Monday to meet with IRS employees that worked in the building hit by a small plane last Thursday. (The Post's Dan Balz spotted Geithner this morning on a Southwest Airlines flight bound to Austin from Thurgood Marshall Baltimore Washington International Airport.)
Geithner and Shulman will meet privately with agency employees who worked in the building and tour the crash site, the Treasury Department announced Sunday night.
IRS collections manager Vernon Hunter, 67, was the only person other than pilot Joseph Stack killed in the crash. He spent 27 years with the IRS, according to the National Treasury Employees Union. Hunter's wife, Valerie, is an IRS revenue officer, the union said.
"This act of violence has taken the life of a dedicated federal employee, a beloved husband, father and grandfather, a mentor and a friend to IRS employees," NTEU President Colleen M. Kelley said in a statement over the weekend. She is also in Austin today meeting with colleagues and union members after last week calling on the Obama administration and lawmakers to provide more security for federal workers in the wake of the crash.
Hunter's son, Ken, criticized media coverage of Stack's motivations in a local news interview.
"They don't need to talk about him. Talk about my dad," Ken Hunter said. "You know, some people are trying to make this guy out to be a hero, a patriot. My dad served two terms in Vietnam. This guy never served at all. My dad wasn't responsible for his tax problems."
Stack's daughter told ABC's "Good Morning America" on Monday that her father is a hero for standing up to "the system," but said his plane attack was inappropriate and wrong.
Thirteen other people were injured by the crash, a tally kept so low by a local fire crew that was training Thursday morning in a nearby parking lot. A federal crash investigation continues and the highway that runs in front of the building remains closed indefinitely due to structural concerns with the building.
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| February 22, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
Categories: Agencies and Departments, Workplace Issues
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