March 30, 1981: The Reagan assassination attempt

On the morning of March 30, 1981, President Reagan was wounded in an assassination attempt in Washington, D.C. The Herald, then published in the afternoon, went to press that day as the president’s fate remained in doubt. Here’s part of the Page 1 story:

Mutual Radio quoted an unnamed hospital doctor as saying the bullet missed the president’s heart by an inch. The network quoted the doctor as saying the bullet struck several arteries, filling part of the chest cavity with blood. The surgery, according to the doctor, began at 1 p.m. PST and was to take one to four hours.

(Secretary of State Alexander) Haig said the president “had one round in his body in the left side, into the left lung, and there is surgery under way now. When the president entered surgery, he was conscious and his condition is stable.”

Mrs. Reagan went immediately to the hospital and ran inside. Vice President George Bush was hurrying back to Washington aboard Air Force Two from Texas.

“As of now,” Haig said, “I am in control in the White House pending the return of the vice president.”

Get a closer look at the March 30, 1981, Herald in our collection of historical front pages.

More in Local News

Local police join thousands honoring slain Canadian officer

Abbotsford Const. John Davidson was killed Nov. 6 in a shootout with a suspected car thief.

Hard work is paying off for Mariner High senior

Mey Ly has excelled in school since moving here from Cambodia; she also serves as an intrepreter.

Darrington School Board race might come down to a coin flip

With a one-vote difference, a single ballot in Skagit County remains to be counted.

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s best images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

No easy exit from Smokey Point shopping complex

There’s just no easy exit on this one. A reader called in… Continue reading

Lynnwood, Marysville, Sultan consider ban on safe injection sites

If approved, they would join Lake Stevens and Snohomish County, which have temporary bans.

City Council OKs initial funding for Smith Avenue parking lot

The site of the former Smith Street Mill is being developed in anticipation of light rail.

Single fingerprint on robbery note leads to arrest

The holdup occurred at a U.S. Bank branch in Lynnwood in June.

Two windsurfers rescued from Port Susan near Kayak Point

The men had failed to return to shore during Sunday’s windstorm.

Most Read