The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


'Good job, Joe'

Joseph Hartzler led the Oklahoma City bombing trial prosecution with a commitment to the process of justice

After two years away, Joseph Hartzler is back home in Springfield, Ill.--and glad of it. Glad for the long summer days to watch his three young sons swing baseball bats and tennis rackets and splash in the neighborhood pool.

Glad to have time to read: He pickedLes Miserables off the bookshelf.

He's glad to worship with his wife, Lisa, at St. John Lutheran, the ELCA congregation the family joined five years ago when they moved to Springfield. Glad, even, to get back to his 12-minute commute to the U.S. attorney's office where he's an assistant.

And he's glad, most of all, that he came home having done what he left to do: Get a conviction of Timothy McVeigh for the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, Oklahoma City, that killed 168, including 19 children. And get a sentence of death.

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February issue


Embracing diversity