Wendi Adelson: The mother of a prominent Florida attorney, who was gunned down in an alleged murder-for-hire plot, described the moments she learned of her son’s violent death – and her continuing quest for justice years later.
Wendi Adelson: “The truth of my life is defined by my son’s murder,” Ruth Markel wrote in “The Unveiling: A Mother’s Reflection on Murder, Grief and Trial Life.”
Wendi Adelson: “I am seventy-seven years old and will likely die before reaching the small satisfaction of any kind of meaningful justice.”
Wendi Adelson: Markel lost her only son, Dan, on the morning of July 18, 2014 – just minutes after she had spoken with him over the phone. In “The Unveiling,” one of her many books, she described not only how her family has chosen to remember “Danny,” but also the “life sentence” she herself is serving as she and her family await answers as to who hired the hit men to ambush and execute him.
“Ma, I have to take this call,” and, “talk to you later,” were the last words she heard from him, she wrote.
Wendi Adelson: Dan Markel, 41, was a divorced father of two and a respected Florida State University law professor when he was gunned down while pulling into the garage of his Tallahassee, Florida, home.
“Life’s progression comes to a stop when you lose a child. It feels like nothing is happening as it should, and everything is flipped upside down,” Markel wrote. “I often think that I have been sentenced for life. That Dan’s murder is also my life sentence: a void-like landscape of traumatic flashbacks, anguish, and prolonged anxiety.”
Markel added, “My hope is that things will get better when justice prevails. In the case of Dan, this has not happened yet.” Wendi Adelson
At the time, Dan was on the phone with a teacher from a charter school that his children were potentially going to be attending, Ruth explained in her book. “There’s someone next to me,” were his final words before the shooter began firing off rounds.
Over eight years later, four people have been arrested – including Markel’s former brother-in-law, Charlie Adelson.
Katherine Magbanua, Charlie’s ex-girlfriend, was sentenced to life in prison for Markel’s murder, and is reportedly scheduled to meet with prosecutors for questioning later this month.
Sigfredo Garcia, the father of Magbanua’s children, was convicted in 2019 of first-degree murder and has appealed his conviction. His accomplice, Luis Rivera, ultimately pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and testified in Magbanua’s May 2022 trial. He described how Magbanua acted as a go-between for Adelson and the alleged hit men.
Meanwhile, Adelson, a 45-year-old former dentist, is scheduled to head to trial next year on charges of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and solicitation to commit first-degree murder for allegedly hiring Garcia and Rivera to carry out the hit.
For over an hour, Markel described to Fox News Digital her love and adoration for Dan’s children, her appreciation of the support and the attention toward the case, and her unrelenting effort – while difficult – to find answers to questions she never imagined she would have to ask.
Ruth Markel described in “The Unveiling” her family’s suspicions immediately following the news of her son’s death. Ruth was in Montreal visiting family when she first learned what had happened.
She immediately broke the news to her loved ones, with one uncle responding in Yiddish, “Machatunim … Machatunim”
“The in-laws. The in-laws,” Markel wrote in the book. “He was talking about the Adelsons, Wendi’s family.”
Wendi Adelson was Dan’s ex-wife.
Attorneys for Charlie, Donna and Harvey Adelson declined to comment when contacted by Fox News Digital with specific excerpts from the book. Wendi’s attorney, John Lauro, also declined to make a public comment.
An August 2016 statement signed by several attorneys representing the Adelson family called “unsupported speculation” of the Adelsons’ involvement in Markel’s murder “categorically false,” according to multiple reports.
“To be clear, none of the Adelsons – Wendi, her brother Charlie, or their parents Donna and Harvey – had anything to do with Dan’s murder,” the statement continued.
The statement also described how police and investigators had “spent the past two years reviewing every shred of evidence out there – every phone record, financial record, text message, email, internet search, everything.”
The statement went on, “We understand why the government has put the Adelson family through this type of severe scrutiny. But nothing has turned up that supports this fanciful fiction that the Adelsons were involved … There is a reason that the police have not arrested any of the Adelsons – they weren’t involved in Dan’s death.”
Charlie Adelson, Wendi’s brother, was arrested in April 2022.