Embed from Getty Images

The catalyst for Gordon B. Johnson’s career with the FBI came from a heinous crime. He remembers clearly the day in 1995 when a rented truck packed with explosives destroyed a government building in Oklahoma City.

The explosion orchestrated by Timothy McVeigh killed 168 people and injured hundreds more.

“I saw all the resources that the FBI was bringing to that investigation and how they were determined to figure out who did this very despicable act,” said Johnson, who was in the Army at the time but joined the FBI that year. “I thought, wow. That is a force of good. . . . I was drawn to that.”

Johnson says his career has come full circle with the arrest of Christopher P. Hasson. Federal authorities contend the U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant stockpiled weapons and planned a widespread domestic terrorist attack targeting politicians and journalists.

Johnson, who is set to retire this week as the special agent in charge of the FBI field office in Baltimore, said agents worked tirelessly with Coast Guard investigators and prosecutors to prevent what they believe would have been a devastating attack, the Washington Post reports.