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2011 - 40th Anniversary of St. Al's Shootings

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  • 2011 - 40th Anniversary of St. Al's Shootings

    Am I correct that 2011 will be the 40th anniversary of the kid that used a sledge hammer and a gun to wreak havoc at St. Al's? I was a freshman at GU and the whole thing seemed surreal at the time. I was at Cataldo cafeteria having lunch with a group of upper-classmen. Nobody could figure out what was happening. I saw nothing and heard nothing, but I think somebody said later that he shot a bullet through the window of Cataldo cafeteria?

    I think the shooter's father did an interview with Art Linkletter about how the evil after-effects of LSD caused his kid to go nuts.

    I don't really remember many of the details.

    Were you there? What did you see?
    Do not go gentle into that good night,
    Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

  • #2
    Tragic loss of life at St. Al's

    There was more than a bullet shot through the window. The St. Al's janitor lost his life, 4 others were wounded, and the gunman was shot and killed by Spokane police.

    This was recapped last year due to another unfortunate, tragic situation involving the St. Al's perpetrator's brother.
    “To be continued …”. Fr Tony Lehman, SJ
    List of All Americans (1st Team Top 5) and Academic All Americans (1st Team Top 5) in the same season since '00:
    Shane Battier, Dan Dickau, Omeka Okafor, DJ Augustin, Kelly Olynyk, Nigel Williams-Goss, Corey Kispert.


    • #3

      Thanks for the link. I think I do remember the janitor being killed and I knew the police killed the kid that did the attack. My parents nearly pulled me from Gonzaga when that happened as they were worried that Spokane was too dangerous for a kid from Central Washington.

      How horrible that his younger brother has been involved in a brutal incident as well. Having your big brother shot by the police can't be good for your mental stability, but it was a long time ago.
      Do not go gentle into that good night,
      Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
      Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


      • #4
        Whoa. Never heard about this...
        I wear a helmet while internetting.


        • #5
          I wasn't there, but I remember the event well. I was really angry at first, because I assumed it was the act of someone with a vendetta against the Catholic Church. I should have guessed it would have been the act of a mentally ill person. That family has had tragedy no family should have to bear.

          I love that church ... The attacker took a sledge hammer to the beautiful marble railing. Perhaps it would have been eventually removed anyway after Vatican II, but I had a lot of memories of it, including the one below, of my Blue Bird Troop at a "Flying Up" Ceremony, where we became Camp Fire Girls.

          Father Prange is officiating there, so that'll give you an idea how far this photo goes back, for natives of the Parish.

          Gonzaga - The Greatest Student Section in the Nation!


          • #6

            Am I the only one on this forum that was attending GU when this event occurred? My parents nearly pulled me out of GU after this shooting, especially since the GU shooting event was about the same time as Art Linkletter's son killed himself after using LSD and Art published several articles about the dangers of youth and drugs.

            Fortunately, my parents backed off after a lot of pleading and crying, so I could go back to using LSD with all the guys in DeSmet.

            Does GU plan any events to memorialize the shooting?

            Oh! Canada!

            Go Bulldogs! Get Bigger!
            Do not go gentle into that good night,
            Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
            Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


            • #7
              So here it is, 40 years ago today. I remember it well as I was up at Sacred Heart Hosp where my mother had undergone brain surgery to remove a tumor the day before. About mid-day as we were anxiously awaiting word about our mother, word came up about the shooting. This was before news dissemination was as quick as it is now. News trickled in about the death and injured. An old neighborhood chum stopped his car across from the Cataldo Dining Hall and helped some injured and then was pinned down himself.

              Late in the afternoon the day before, my brother and I met with the Neurosurgeon and his asst at the PI across the street. He said it was touch and go as she had a "bleeder" that they had a difficult time stopping before closing. Other than that, the operation was a great success. Around 10 PM they said it didn't look good and that she would probably succumb to the aneurysm over night. Mom fought on for 72 hours. They even moved her from the old SH to the brand new facility that opened that weekend. It was a tough 3 days for me. Mom died on Nov 13, my Dad's birthday. The funeral was held at the then smashed up St Aloysius Church with the Rev Peter O'Grady SJ officiating. There weren't many happy faces in that Church for awhile. As I write this, I think that might be the last time I was in St Als.

              Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
              Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
              All mimsy were the borogoves,
              And the mome raths outgrabe.


              • #8
                I was in H.S. but I already had decided that I wanted to attend G.U. My friends gave me a hard time and talked about the crazies at G.U. The shooting and the haunted Music Building stories gave them a lot to talk about.