Danny Defenbaugh, Former Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Dallas Field Office, Dies

By Steve Neavling

Danny Defenbaugh, the former special agent in charge of the FBI’s Dallas Field Office, has died. 

He was 71. 

Defenbaugh served the bureau for 33 years and was a certified bomb technician who oversaw 150 investigations, including the 1983 bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, and the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. He also helped investigate the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. 

Defenbaugh’s family said he died this week at Baylor Scott and White T. Boone Pickens Cancer Hospital after undergoing a bone marrow stem cell transplant, KRLD News Radio reports.

“On behalf of the Defenbaugh family, our hearts grieve for Danny’s many friends and colleagues, our country, and the world’s loss of a great man. A patriotic man. A man who dedicated his whole life to thwarting off evil and defending America,” his family wrote on Defenbaugh’s Facebook page.

Defenbaugh, who is from Ohio, became a clerk for the FBI in 1969 before becoming an agent in 1976. 

He served as special agent in charge in Dallas from 1998 until his retirement in 2002. 

“The aura that surrounded him had such a presence. You knew he embodied greatness and strength,” his family wrote.

While Defenbaugh’s stem cell transplant was successful, “the complications that proceeded were just too much for his body to sustain,” the family said.

“In closing this message we find it so fitting to share that while writing this, a couple of eagles flew over Danny & his wife, Jennifer Defenbaugh’s property,” his family wrote.

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