Illinois History Minutes

March 30 Illinois History Minute


It’s March 30th, the day in 1981 that President Ronald Reagan was seriously wounded in an assassination attempt. The Illinois native was shot outside a Washington D.C. hotel by John Hinckley Junior. Initial news reports said the president had escaped injury, then that he did not seem to be seriously injured, as White House correspondent Bill Greenwood reported on ABC television.

Internal bleeding had left the president close to death by the time he arrived at the hospital. But doctors were able to stabilize his condition. The shooting also injured three other people, including Centralia native James Brady, the White House press secretary, who was permanently disabled by brain damage.