In 2005 more than a thousand people packed a Salisbury chapel for David Wilhelm’s funeral, a very public tribute to a law enforcement agent who fell victim to a crime as violent as it was random.
On Tuesday, the ninth anniversary of the former Charlotte agent’s death, Wilhelm’s family received another tribute. The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund presented them with a special video of his life, destined to go into the group’s planned museum in Washington.
The presentation to Wilhelm’s widow, Candee, and parents took place before a small audience of his former colleagues at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations office.
Wilhelm was a Salisbury native and UNC Charlotte graduate who spent 15 years as an agent specializing in drug smuggling and money laundering investigations. He left Charlotte in 2002 for a promotion in Norfolk, then became assistant special agent in charge in the Atlanta office.
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On March 11, 2005, he was putting in tile in his house when he was fatally shot during a 26-hour crime spree by a man who had stolen an officer’s gun in a downtown courthouse.
Wilhelm’s video tribute was sponsored by Atlanta-based Delta Airlines.
“We can’t be happy enough about them taking the time to honor him and recognize the work and memorialize the life that he led,” said Brock Nicholson, special agent in charge of Homeland Security investigations in Georgia and the Carolinas.