Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Murder of Valerie Percy

Prominent Lives

The Percy family has been largely mute about the loss of their loved one over the years. Chuck Percy has commented occasionally when asked, but he declined to actively participate in a number of book projects concerning Valerie's death.

Several members of Valerie's family have gone on to lead prominent lives.

Her stepmother, Loraine, is a dame of society circles in Washington, D.C. Brother Roger is CEO of RDP Associates, a large Seattle-based business consulting firm. And Valerie's twin, Sharon, has had a remarkable career.

Marriage of Sharon Percy to John D. "Jay" Rockefeller IV
Marriage of Sharon Percy to John D. "Jay" Rockefeller IV

She married Jay Rockefeller, namesake great-grandson of oil baron John D. Rockefeller, in the spring of 1967, the year he won election to the West Virginia Legislature.

Sharon Percy Rockefeller played the role of political wife as her husband served as governor of West Virginia for a decade before moving to the U.S. Senate in 1984. The couple raised four children—three sons and a daughter they named Valerie in memory of her slain twin.

Since 1989, Sharon Percy Rockefeller has been president and CEO of WETA, the public television and radio stations in Washington. She has served as a director of PepsiCo, PBS, Sotheby's, the Smithsonian, the National Gallery of Art, the National Cathedral and Stanford, Chicago, and George Washington universities. Her WETA biography says she is active in education, fine arts, government and women's issues.

Chuck Percy, meanwhile, had a run at the White House.

In 1968, his name was mentioned prominently as a possible running mate of Richard Nixon. That ended when Percy decided to support Nelson Rockefeller, uncle of his son-in-law, for the Republican presidential nomination that year.

Percy later became a Nixon enemy by criticizing America's continued involvement in Vietnam.

In the mid-1970s, Percy put together an exploratory committee for a run at the White House in 1976, but he pulled out when Gerald Ford, who filled Nixon's 2nd term after Nixon's resignation, decided to run for election.

Paul Simon
Paul Simon

Percy lost his Illinois Senate seat to Paul Simon in 1984, but he has continued to be an important behind-the-scenes player in Washington as president of Charles Percy and Associates Inc. and as a member of the influential Council on Foreign Relations.

Percy has traveled to Asia frequently. His firm has specialized in locating technology parks in developing nations, including India. Now 85, he is said to be fit and active.

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