On this Day in 1981 President Reagan Was Shot

History.com reminds that on this day in 1981, Republican President Ronald Reagan was shot, a reminder that deranged people are always a threat:

On March 30, 1981, President Ronald Reagan is shot in the chest outside a Washington, D.C. hotel by a drifter named John Hinckley Jr.

The president had just finished addressing a labor meeting at the Washington Hilton Hotel and was walking with his entourage to his limousine when Hinckley, standing among a group of reporters, fired six shots at the president, hitting Reagan and three of his attendants.

The president was shot in the left lung, and the .22 caliber bullet just missed his heart. In an impressive feat for a 70-year-old man with a collapsed lung, he walked into George Washington University Hospital under his own power. As he was treated and prepared for surgery, he was in good spirits and quipped to his wife, Nancy, “Honey, I forgot to duck,” and to his surgeons, “Please tell me you’re Republicans.” Reagan’s surgery lasted two hours, and he was listed in stable and good condition afterward.

The reason for the 25-year-old Hinckley’s attack on Reagan was a desire to woo actress Jodie Foster, as reported by Rolling Stone:

In a letter sent before the attack, Hinckley, now 66, confessed that his motive in attempting to kill the President was to impress Foster, whom he’d been stalking after watching her in Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver. “This letter is being written only an hour before I leave for the Hilton Hotel,” he wrote. “Jodie, I’m asking you to please look into your heart and at least give the chance, with this historical deed, to gain your love and respect.”

Hinckley was released


-Daily Press: Local reaction: John Hinckley Jr. to move to Kingsmill – The Virginia Gazette (dailypress.com)

-WTVR: Lawyers to urge no restrictions for Reagan shooter Hinckley

-Associated Press: John Hinckley, who shot Reagan, to be freed from oversight | 13newsnow.com



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