It came very close for “Rawhide,” Pres. Reagan’s Secret Service code name.
A remarkable report from CBS News adds to the history of this day.
At 2:27 pm EST, thirty years ago today, Pres. Ronald Reagan was shot and critically wounded, though the American public didn’t know how grievously at the time.
John Hinckley was found not guilty by reason of insanity and is still confined, but is working hard to increase his unsupervised furloughs.
Hinckley’s visits to Williamsburg also trigger notification to Sarah Brady, whose husband James, was critically wounded during the assassination attempt. James Brady was the White House Press Secretary at the time. Sarah Brady is an alumna of the College of William and Mary.
“Every time he gets out for a 10-day period,” Davis quoted Sarah Brady saying of Hinckley, “I get a call so I know to not go to Williamsburg then. I love going there. But I obviously don’t want to cross paths with John Hinckley.”
Jim and Sarah Brady went on to be champions of gun control.
“If it hadn’t been for them, we would not have passed the Brady Law, and then the ban on assault weapons, and on cop-killer bullets…How many people are alive today because of Jim and Sarah Brady? How many? Countless.”
New audio recordings, which you can hear on the video above, reveal just how close Reagan came to having his life ended.
“I hope you’re all Republicans,” Reagan quipped with the GW trauma surgeons who saved his life. Their response: today we’re all Republicans.
The assassination attempt bonded the American people to Pres. Reagan, which is likely one reason why Reagan had no problem getting a second term, but more importantly, escaped impeachment hearings over Iran-Contra, a convoluted scheme which would have revealed real crimes and misdemeanors.
This post has been expanded and edited.