Wow, I didn't expect that. A weirdly familiar face from my youth just showed up on my social media newsfeed, promoting an upcoming concert appearance here in Connecticut. If you grew up in the 80's like me, do you remember John Hinckley, Jr?

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Let me refresh your memory -

Getty Images
Getty Images

On March 30, 1981, I was in elementary school in Tulsa, Oklahoma. It was just after lunch when our principal made an announcement that school was dismissing early. Why? John Hinckley, Jr. had just attempted to assassinate President Ronald Reagan. I remember my mother picking my brother and I up, and we were glued to the radio, listening to the breaking details as we made it to our house. Once we got in and got our tv on, the endless replays of that horrible scene were repeated over and over and over.

I will never forget one of the videos I saw that morning of White House Press Secretary James Brady, who had suffered a gunshot wound to his head. That image has been burned into my fiber for over 40 years, it was so disturbing.

Through the 80's and 90's, news stations would routinely update Hinckley's status after he was found not guilty by reason of insanity. Hinckley spent close to 35 years in psychiatric institutions, before he was granted a conditional release in 2016. Hinckley's restrictions are being lifted unconditionally in June 2022, and he's embarking on a tour to showcase his musical skills, dubbing it the "Redemption Tour". The announcement that I saw this morning was for his upcoming appearance at Hamden's Space Ballroom on Saturday, July 16, 2022.

I went onto Hinckley's YouTube Channel, where he has almost 27,000 subscribers. here's a video of Hinckley performing one of his original songs:

Frankly, I'm stunned. I sent a screenshot of the show announcement to my younger brother Steve, who answered back with "The guy who tried to assassinate Reagan, the Jodie Foster guy?" Yep, he's not using Jr, anymore, but I'll never forget that face.

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