|The Washington Post, Washington D.C. June 23, 1998
Graham Leith Ruppert, on June 20, 1998, in an
Graham spent most of
his quiet life as an analyst at the super-secret National Security Agency at Fort Meade,
Maryland, never telling his four children the details of his work. He and his wife
of 28 years, Sandra Lea Ruppert, raised their family in a split-level duplex snug against
a patch of woods on Chapelgate Road in Odenton, Maryland. "He enjoyed being a
family man," said Bill Ruppert, 32, his oldest son. The suburban neighborhood
of chain-link fences, dusty pickups and boat trailers sits about five miles from the
barbed wire of the NSA, a high-tech listening post in western Anne Arundel County charged
with breaking codes and gathering foreign intelligence. Ruppert joined the NSA in
1964, say relatives and acquaintances, after a four-year stint with the Air Force in
Alaska and graduation from Arlington's Wakefield High School. A former NSA worker
said Ruppert worked rotating shifts as a mid-level supervisor in the operations room of
the main building, a towering blue-glass cube flanked by massive antenna arrays.
Like many at NSA, Ruppert kept to himself. Even in high school, he participated in
few activities other than science clubs. "Graham was rather quiet; not
secretive, but quiet and unto himself," said Ken Scruggs, a Wakefield alumnus who
lives near Sarasota, Florida. "I remember him shuffling, keeping his head down.
Talking to people but not really looking at them."