Reagan Assassination Attempt
Reagan Assassination Attempt. Just 69 days into his presidency, President Ronald Reagan walked out of a hotel into a hail of bullets. For the 30th anniversary of the assassination attempt, a new nonfiction book gives a narrative timeline of the harrowing events. Or, you can take a searchable scroll through the time-stamped history here.

John Hinckley Jr.
Sunday, March 29, 1981
John Hinckley Jr. arrived in Washington, D.C., by Greyhound bus from another state (locate it). In what newspaper did Hinckley read about President Reagan’s next-day schedule?
Ronald Reagan
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 1:45 p.m.
Ronald Reagan arrived at the Washington Hilton (map it) for a luncheon speech before 3,500 conference attendees. What was the organization?
James Brady
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 2:27 p.m.
John Hinckley fired six shots. The first bullet hit James Brady in the head, partially paralyzing the White House press secretary. What type of gun did Hinckley use?
Thomas Delahanty
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 2:27:02 p.m.
John Hinckley’s second bullet hit Thomas Delahanty in the back. The spinal injury damaged nerves in his left arm, forcing his retirement from this Washington, D.C., department. Surgeons wore bulletproof vests to remove what type of ammunition?
Timothy McCarthy
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 2:27:03 p.m.
John Hinckley’s third bullet hit a window across the street. The fourth bullet hit Secret Service Agent Timothy McCarthy in the abdomen as he shielded Reagan from the line of fire. Where does McCarthy work as police chief today?
Jerry Parr
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 2:27:05 p.m.
John Hinckley’s fifth bullet hit the waiting limousine’s window. Special Agent in Charge Jerry Parr pushed Reagan into the car as the last bullet ricocheted off the armored door. What degree did Parr earn from Loyola University after he retired from the Secret Service?
George Washington University Hospital
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 2:30 p.m.
On Jerry Parr’s directive, the limo driver went to the nearest trauma center instead of the usual presidential facility. At George Washington University Hospital, Reagan walked into the emergency room but collapsed. What was wrong with the president?
Alfred Antenucci
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: Before 2:35 p.m.
Midwest union official Alfred Antenucci pulled Hinckley to the ground after the shooting stopped. What was his home state?
Nancy Reagan
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 2:40 p.m.
First lady Nancy Reagan arrived at the hospital while her husband was still in the emergency room. Who was the president evoking when he told her: “Honey, I forgot to duck”?
John F. Kennedy
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: Roughly 3 p.m.
Reagan’s White House staff and cabinet met in the West Wing’s Situation Room to discuss the shooting. The ground-level space was created by President Kennedy after what strategic failure?
Johnny Carson
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: Roughly 3 p.m.
With the Reagan shooting dominating the airwaves, producers postponed the 53rd Academy Awards show hosted by Johnny Carson. The next night all the acting award winners were under 40, but who was the youngest in the bunch?
Fred Fielding
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: Roughly 3 p.m.
Although never used in the Reagan shooting, White House Counsel Fred Fielding prepared for the transfer of presidential power based on what constitutional amendment?
Alexander Haig
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 4 p.m.
During an impromptu press conference at the White House, Secretary of State Alexander Haig took the podium. What was the quote that haunted his career thereafter?
Dr. Benjamin Aaron
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 5 p.m.
During Reagan’s emergency surgery at George Washington University Hospital, Dr. Benjamin Aaron located the sixth bullet. The chief of thoracic surgery found the flattened, dime-shaped round one inch from what organ?
Shawnee Indian Chief Tecumseh
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: Roughly 5:40 p.m.
Conspiracy buffs reignited Shawnee Indian Chief Tecumseh’s Curse of Tippecanoe and its connection to the eerie deaths of presidents elected in years ending in zero. What zero-factor president did Tecumseh have a serious problem with?
George H. W. Bush
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 6:40 p.m.
Vice President Bush arrived at Andrews Air Force Base within hours of Reagan’s shooting. He was contacted on board Air Force Two, which was flying over which city at the time?
Jodie Foster
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 7 p.m.
During Hinckley’s interview with federal agents, he talked for the first time about Jodie Foster. Shortly thereafter, the agents discovered his deranged obsession with the movie star. At what collegiate institution did he stalk her?
Jimmy Carter
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: Around 8 p.m.
Federal agents realized John Hinckley Jr. had been stalking President Carter in October 1980, when he was arrested for carrying a firearm. At the time, no one connected the airport arrest to the president’s pending appearance. What was the city?
Bobby Knight
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 8:15 p.m.
Although NCAA officials were concerned about the Reagan shooting, the men’s basketball championship game started as planned between the Indiana Hoosiers coached by Bobby Knight and this sports powerhouse. Who was the Most Outstanding Player?
W.C. Fields
Monday, March 30, 1981
Time: 8:50 p.m.
After his surgery, President Reagan was unable to talk because of the ventilator but maintained his sense of humor. Borrowing from legendary satirical funnyman W.C. Fields, he scribbled on a notepad for a nurse: “All in all, I’d rather be in …” What was the city?
St. Elizabeth’s Hospital
June 26, 1982
On 13 federal offenses, John Hinckley Jr. was found not guilty by reason of insanity and sentenced indefinitely to the St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Washington, D.C. Public outrage at the verdict resulted in what federal law?
Sarah Brady
Nov. 30, 1993
Sarah Brady became a tireless advocate for gun control after her husband, James, was injured in the Reagan shooting. The principal result of their labor occurred when the Brady handgun law was signed. What president signed it?