Leesburg family searches for closure as Father’s Day approaches

Mike Whetsell (Family Photo)

As Father’s Day gets closer, a family is reminded that they do not have closure.

Leesburg Police are now asking for the public’s help with the cold case.

Friday will mark 25 years since Mike Whetsell’s murder.

It happened on Edwards Ferry Road, near the Plaza Street intersection.

“There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about dad. I mean, he’s always on my mind,” said Sherry Riley, who is a Leesburg police dispatcher.

Riley still remembers the day that her father was murdered.

“I was devastated. I had talk to him 30 minutes prior,” said Riley. “He was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. He was on his way back home for dinner.”

In June 1992, Whetsell was 55-years-old and Riley was 27-years-old.

Whetsell was driving along the street, when other drivers noticed that he lost control of his car. It caused him to hit a fence.

When emergency responders got closer, they noticed that he was hit by a stray bullet.

He died two days later, on June 18, 1992.

“There’s been a lot of presumptions that it probably was an accidental situation, which is obviously a possibility. I think really….what we’re hoping for at this point is really giving the family some answers,” said Lt. Jaime Sanford, who is the Commander of the Criminal Investigations Division.

“You know, we spent Father’s Day sitting in a funeral home,” said Riley. “The only thing I would say to whoever did it is please come forward, confess and tell us why you did it.”

Whetsell leaves behind his wife, two children and four grandchildren.

“He missed my son graduating from high school and college. He just missed my niece graduating this past Tuesday,” said Riley.

A $25,000 reward is being offered for information that could lead to an arrest.

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