I was a freshman in college...
My usual routine was to head to the Student Union building for a quick snack, after my mid-morning class released us. The Student Union was always the buzz of activity - and it was where my Greek friends would congregate to hang out between hitting the books or heading home.
The upper floor had a lounge area with a television, where most mornings, you'd find a handful of students engrossed in catching up on the prolific soap operas of the day..."All My Children" and "General Hospital" were crowd favorites.
On this particular morning, as I walked in, there wasn't the normal half-dozen or so students...but dozens and dozens...all staring at the TV in stunned amazement.
My first thought was, "Wow...what has Erica Kane gotten herself into NOW?"
I jockeyed into position so that I could see what everyone else was seeing, as I murmured to the people around me, "What happened? What's going on?"
I could hear "shot" and "President Reagan" echoing through the room...two words that you never wanted to hear together. It was unthinkable.
It was 30 years ago today...and President Reagan had indeed been shot...and our normal routines came to a standstill that day, as we all gathered around the TV set to hear the latest. Classes were forgotten...social engagements were cancelled or pushed back...and the only topic being discussed anywhere that day on campus was how the President was doing.
I remember being scared...shocked...helpless...and yet, proud. I was proud of my generation. We may have had our political differences in the past, but on THAT day, we were united in our fervent prayer that our beloved President would pull through this.
I had been too young to remember President Kennedy's assassination...and the Challenger disaster was yet to come...this was my first defining moment of a national tragedy, and I remember it vividly.
Were you old enough to remember March 30, 1981? What were you doing? Where were you?