Description: Mary Ann Vecchio gestures and screams as she kneels by the body of a student, Jeffrey Miller, lying face down on the campus of Kent State University, in Kent, Ohio. On publication, the image was retouched to remove the fencepost above Vecchio's head.Source: © 1970 Valley News-Dispatch
Forty-three years ago, I had dropped out of college for a semester and was working in a small family grocery store next to the Yale Co-op. Yale was already on strike in support of the Black Panthers on trial at the courthouse by the New Haven Green. It was a strange time. I had a completely different perspective on things now that I wasn't living on campus. I was staying with a seventy-eight year old widow, Marie Bronson, Mrs. Clarence Bronson, whose husband had been Yale Class of 1900. Two of Mrs. B's daughters had been friends of my father when he was at Yale Divinity in the 1930's. Marie became one of my best friends.
On May 1st, President Nixon ordered the invasion of Cambodia (which ended up completely destabilizing that country). There were demonstrations and strikes on campuses all around the U.S. On May 4th the Ohio National Guard overreacted to demonstrations at Kent State University. The result is shown in the photograph above.