The Mysterious Death of William Colby After Gary Caradori's plane broke apart over Lee County, Illinois

, killing Carad ori and his son, the Franklin Committee hired former CIA Director William Colby to investigate Caradori's plane "crash." Franklin Committee Chairman Loren Schmi t had lobbied for Colby to be appointed as the Committee's initial counsel, but his fellow senators on the Committee overruled Colby's appointment by a narrow m argin because of Colby's "political baggage." But by the time of Caradori's demi se, some of the more influential members on the Committee suspected that Larry K ing's child trafficking enterprise was affiliated with the CIA, and they felt th at Colby might be able shed light on the crash. The bespectacled, soft-spoken Colby was a thin 5'8'', and he had a nebbish air t hat belied his former status as a "super spy." He parachuted behind Nazi lines a s an intelligence officer during World War II and headed the Rome CIA station ea rly in the Cold War, working to prevent the election of a Communist government. He also oversaw the CIA's ominous Phoenix program. In 1975, then-CIA Director Colby appeared before the US Senate's "Church Hearing " and proved that he wasn't averse to publicizing the Agency's nasty secrets or "family jewels." In front of a national television audience, he candidly confess ed to assassination initiatives and mind control programs that had been shrouded from the American public. Colby didn't receive accolades for his candor, but, r ather, incurred the wrath of ranking intelligence officials and President Gerald Ford--Ford fired him as CIA Director and he was replaced George H.W. Bush. Colb y later wrote that he found solace in his disclosures before the Church Hearing, because he believed the CIA must be accountable to Congress and the public unde r the Constitution--he felt he did the right thing not only for his country but also for his conscience. Given Colby's prior candor on the CIA's abuses of power, members of the Franklin Committee hoped he would have the means and mettle to provide a definitive expl anation of Caradori's death. But Colby wouldn't say that Caradori's death was a consequence of foul play--at least publicly. Writing to Senator Schmit about his investigation into Caradori's crash, Colby stated: "I only regret that we were not able to penetrate more effectively the clouds of confusion and contradiction that have surrounded this whole case." Though Colby wouldn't publicly declare t hat Caradori had been murdered, I'm aware of him telling at least three people w ho were either affiliated with the Committee or Caracorp, Caradoris company, tha t Caradori's death was, in fact, an assassination. In 1993, Colby also consented to be interviewed by the makers of Conspiracy of S ilence, but he didn't discuss Caradori's death with Yorkshire Television either. However, he commented on the advice he dispensed to John DeCamp concerning his publishing of The Franklin Cover-up: "I said you have to consider the possibilit y of some danger not only to your reputation but to your person." Colby also pro mised to submit the Franklin Committee's findings to the US Attorney General. Approximately three years after Colby granted Yorkshire Television an interview, his body washed up on the banks of Maryland's Wicomico River--he had been missi ng for nine days. The Maryland medical examiner's office in Baltimore concluded that the seventy-six-year-old Colby had fallen out of his canoe as the result of a heart attack or stroke, suffered hypothermia, and drowned. On the surface, th e medical examiner's conclusions may sound rational, but Colby's death is chockfull of enigmas. Colby had a summer home in Rock Point, Maryland on the banks of the Wicomico Riv er, a tributary of the Potomac River. On the cold, blustery night of April 27, 1 996, the seventy-six-year-old Colby reportedly went canoeing in the Wicomico Riv er-the winds were gusting at twenty-five MPH. "I don't see why a man his age wou

take a hot shower. blus tery night without shoes--it was cold enough for him to wear a windbreaker and y et he opted not to wear shoes. and hit the sack." said a Rock Point neighbor." Colby's canoe would be spotted the next day on a sand bar. The investigat or also said: "There were dinner items on the table. and drag lines. A third newspaper account stated Colby told his wife he wasn't feeling well and yet went canoeing nonetheless. Colby went canoeing on a cold. The US Coast Guard was summoned. Colby disclosed to him that he had become disillusioned with the CIA's use of children for sinister ag endas and was determined to make the Agency accountable for its abuses--DeCamp m aintains that Colby told him this shortly before his death. The day Colby's canoe was found Coast Guard crews started to search the Wicomico for his body. . ultimately. The Associated Press reported that Colby's body was clad in khaki pants. but the arti cle didn't state whether or not Colby conveyed to wife that he was going canoein g. Colby phoned his wife earlier in the evening--she was in Texas. In The Franklin Scandal. The Coast Guard ultimately scoured the river for eight days with divers.ld be out there. I've found differing accounts of their conversation: The Associated Press r eported that Colby told her he didn't feel well but was going canoeing anyway--T he Guardian reported that he phoned his wife to say he was going to eat dinner. had certainly bared a number of the CIA's abuses to the Senate. and a red windbreaker. Colby. because it is an i ntegral facet of Franklin lore." It was later reported that Colby's meal was half eaten on the dinner table. Then on May 6. So if the A ssociated Press' account of Colby's canoeing apparel was accurate. and one of its investigators said that Colby left his radio and computer on when he went canoeing. and drag-lines. But he had balked at publicly stating Caradori's death was a murder. and the Maryl and medical examiner's account was accurate. sonar equipment. and dogs rummaged the river's banks--Co lby's body was never recovered. I discussed Colby's enigmatic death. but he wasn't wearing shoes. I find it problematic to ascribe an absolute raison d'être for William Colby's very strange demise. sonar. "If I went out there it would be i n a 16. According to John DeCamp. but Colby was nowhere to be found. but I certainly would not exclude foul play. So.to 20-foot boat-not a canoe. a blue and white shirt. visiting her mot her. a devout Cath olic. but I'm unsure if that was con jecture because the Coast Guard investigator said that "dinner items" were on th e table. even though he said i t privately. Colby's body washed ashore close to where his canoe had originally been spotted--it's odd that Colby's body mater ialized so close to the canoe even though the Coast Guard had scoured the vicini ty with divers.