The year id 1970…..the height of the antiwar movement….the location is Kent State…..Four Kent State University students were killed and nine were injured on May 4, 1970, when members of the Ohio National Guard opened fire on a crowd gathered to protest the Vietnam War. The tragedy was a watershed moment for a nation divided by the conflict in Southeast Asia. In its immediate aftermath, a student-led strike forced the temporary closure of colleges and universities across the country. Some political observers believe the events of that day in northeast Ohio tilted public opinion against the war and may have contributed to the downfall of President Richard Nixon.
I bring up this short history because one of the survivors of that shooting spree has died….
Alan Canfora, who was one of nine students who were wounded in the 1970 Kent State shootings but survived, has died. He was 71.
Canfora died Dec. 20 at home from an illness unrelated to COVID-19, according to a Facebook post by his sister, Chic Canfora.
“It is with immense sadness that I share news of the passing of my beloved brother, Alan Canfora — a devastating loss to our family, friends and the Kent State/May 4 community,” she wrote in the post as reported by the Akron Beacon Journal.
As a junior at Kent State, Canfora was one of the hundreds of students who protested at the Ohio campus May 1-4. They were demonstrating against the Vietnam War and the National Guard’s presence on their campus.
The Guardsmen fired on unarmed protesters May 4. Canfora was shot in the right wrist in the first 13 seconds. Four students — Allison Krause, Jeffrey Miller, Sandra Lee Scheuer and William Schroeder — were killed.
This may not mean much to some but to me it was a turning point in our protests against the Vietnam War….
It is a crying shame that this country cannot muster a protest movement against our many wars and especially our endless wars of Iraq and Afghanistan.
These people we brave beyond compare….something that is sadly missing in our society these days.
Will we ever see the antiwar movement re-born?
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”