Kent State shootings

1970 shootings in Kent, Ohio, US during student-led protest of Vietnam War

The Kent State shootings (also known as the May 4 massacre or the Kent State massacre) occurred at Kent State University in the U. S. city of Kent, Ohio, and involved the shooting of unarmed college students by the Ohio National Guard on Monday, 4 May 1970.  The guardsmen fired 67 rounds over a period of 13 seconds, killing four students and wounding nine others, one of whom suffered permanent paralysis.  Some of the students who were shot had been protesting the Cambodian Campaign, which President Richard Nixon announced during a television address on 30 April.  Other students who were shot had been walking nearby or observing the protest from a distance.

When echoes of the fusillade fade away, thirteen bodies are sprawled on the ground.  Nine students are wounded.  Four are dead—Allison Krause, Bill Schroeder, Sandra Scheuer, and Jeffrey Miller.  Of the thirteen who were shot, only two have been hit frontally.  Seven have bullets in their sides and four in their backs, proving they were not advancing but fleeing. ~ Jules Archer


  • They listen incredulously as campus police officer Harold E. Rice shouts through a bullhorn:  "Attention!  This assembly is unlawful!  This is an order—disperse immediately!"
  • Despite the outrage of the dead students' parents, an Ohio grand jury refused to indict any of the guardsmen for the Kent State murders.  Ohio's Senator Stephen M. Young called the grand jury's decision "a fraud and a fakery."
  • These would be the first of many probes into what soon became known as the Kent State Massacre.  Like the Boston Massacre almost exactly two hundred years before (March 5, 1770), which it resembled, it was called a massacre not for the number of its victims but for the wanton manner in which they were shot down.
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