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Marcia S. Daniel (1953-2018)


Marcia S. (Mohr) Daniel


Marcia S. Daniel, who during a more than three-decade career at the FBI worked on the Oklahoma City bombing case and helped authors and screenwriters navigate the public records process, died March 17 at Heritage Village of Waterville. She was 64.

She had Alzheimer’s, with which she was diagnosed at 53 and prompted her departure from the FBI, her sisters said.

Ms. Daniel held many roles within the bureau — organizing and labeling evidence and artifacts, testifying in court about criminal cases, and even one time leading the interior design for a new FBI building, sister Karen Shelt said. She spent years as an information agent for the FBI’s Freedom of Information Act office, conducting research of public documents for journalists, authors, and others, sister Leanna Rearick said.

Gregg Herken in his book Brotherhood of the Bomb about scientists in the Manhattan Project thanks Ms. Daniel, saying she was “a ‘FOIA angel’ at the FBI and deserves all the awards the bureau can possibly give her.”

Late in her career at the FBI, she developed ways to streamline the FOIA process for authors, and received a commendation from then-U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno for her work, Ms. Shelt said.

Among the movies she helped conduct research for was Mississippi Burning, about the FBI’s investigation into the 1964 murder of three civil rights workers.

“She was very confident and bright and able to see lots of sides of things,” Ms. Shelt said.

Born Marcia Mohr on Oct. 5, 1953, to Robert and Rose Mohr of Wauseon, Ms. Daniel graduated from Wauseon High School in 1972.

She left home soon after she graduated, heading to Kansas City first for an airline’s stewardess training program, before she was recruited by the bureau, said Ms. Shelt, who was 18 and her sisters 7 and 6 when their mother died. Ms. Shelt said she essentially took over raising her sisters when their mother died, but understood and was supportive when Ms. Daniel left for the city.

“To make the complete break that she did, and she felt that she needed to, I was very proud of her,” Ms. Shelt said.

She barreled head-first into her career, working out of Washington, D.C., but also at times in the field. She spent weeks in Oklahoma City in 1995 after the terrorist attack, leading the information organization effort, and then weeks more in Denver for Timothy McVeigh’s trial.

Ms. Daniel also worked on the Hillside Stranglers case in the Los Angeles area. 

“She would always say ‘We would put a lot of bad guys in jail,’ but that’s about all she really talked about it,” Ms. Rearick said.

Her first marriage to Brian Nileson ended in divorce; her second husband, Kenneth Daniel, died in 2012. She loved to travel, and loved to shop.

Ms. Daniel is survived by her sisters Karen Shelt and Leanna Rearick; brother Jim Mohr, and “many loving nieces and nephews.”

Visitation will begin at 10 a.m. Friday at Barnes Funeral Chapel in Delta, with a memorial service at 11 a.m. A graveside service and interment will be held at 2 p.m. at Pettisville Cemetery.

The family suggests tributes to Southerncare Hospice, 6545 W. Central Ave., Toledo, or to Zion United Methodist Church, 4533 County Road 11, Wauseon.

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