Friday, April 23, 2010

40th Anniversaries this year

April 10, 1970 Paul McCartney announces the Beatles
would never work together again
April 22, 1970 First Earth Day
May 4, 1970 Four Students Killed and Nine Injured at
Kent State University

These are just three events that happened the year I was born, but all three have affected me in one way or another.

I am a huge Beatles fan. Actually, at least according to my husband, you have to like a specific album and listen to all their music instead of just the popular tunes, to qualify as a “huge” fan, so I guess I would just say I like them “quite a lot.” I’ve been to Liverpool and seen where many of the Fab Four grew up, as well as to NYC where John later moved with Yoko Ono. I’ve also seen some of their movies, as well as films about them. I haven’t read many books about them yet, but am amassing a small collection for reading later. I think their music does so much to define the decade even though it was the end of era for them.

To be honest, I didn’t do much to commemorate Earth Day this year (aside from picking up a stray cigarette box), but I like to think I do something everyday to be green from recycling and reusing as many things as possible, to trying to be more energy efficient. I am a fan of Ed Bagley Jr. and try to never miss his show, “Living with Ed.” I still have a long way to go before I’ll be anywhere close to his level of “greenness,” but I’m working on it.

Having been a student at Kent State University, and being born two months before May 4, 1970 happened, I feel a special connection to the whole event. I also lived in the same dorm as Allison Krause, one of the murdered students. We may have even shared the same room. I guess I’ll never know.

The fact that what happened that day in May made national news, and thus ensured Kent State a secure place in history, may have influenced my decision somewhat to attend there. Let’s just say that you can’t attend KSU and not be influenced by it somewhat, at least not if you happen to walk past the memorials everyday like I did. Plus, there’s the annual commemoration every May. As a one-time staff member of the Daily Kent Stater, I once got to meet one of the injured (actually paralyzed) students, Dean Kahler, who, at the time, I believe was an Athens County Commissioner. He was with his young daughter who had lots of questions about the whole thing, like wanting to know if the students died right there (pointing at marked spots in the parking lot). I even came back for the 25th anniversary in which Mary Ann Vecchio (the girl in the famous photo) made an appearance. I do not plan on attending the 40th commemoration due to work conflicts, but I will take a moment out of my day to quietly remember the four who would have been about my parent’s age if they were alive today.

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