Martin L. King Jr. Assassination

April 4, 1968

I was driving to the movie theater today in my new 1967 Chevy Camaro, listening to my favorite song Hey Jude by The Beatles, when my wife called and said to me "Is the most beautiful 37 year old in the world, Michael Dawson?," after I answered yes she continued, "You better be home tonight before 6:00 because Bonanza with Ben Cartwright will be on then." I said okay and hung up. I love that show and so does my wife and two kids. I was going to watch a movie I had heard was very good by many people, The Sound Of Music. Even though he is not in that movie, Cliff Robertson is my favorite actor. I was also just driving by work at the car repair shop and hoping they wouldn't recognize my car because they called me to come in and I didn't answer!

First of all, I hate segregation. I don't see why some people don't like them. They bleed red blood, walk on two legs, and breathe air just like whites. That's why I like Martin Luther King Jr. He is a great anti-segregation speaker and is a great natural leader.


I was listening to the radio this evening while eating supper before my night shift, and I heard that Dr. King will be at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee on April 4th, 1968, which is weird because that is today. The motel is only a couple of blocks away from my route to my work at the shop, so I left fifteen minutes early at about 5:50 to drive by there and see if he was standing outside, and see if I could get a handshake. Sure enough, he was standing there, on the balcony staring off yonder. I knew he was a very famous person and I was very lucky just to see him. I also recognized Reverend Jesse Jackson and Civil Rights Leader Andrew Young standing next to him.


I was sitting in my car building my courage to go up there and say hi when I heard a bang from behind me and then Dr. King fall to the ground like he fainted. I was so confused I didn't know what to do. I was in a panic. So many questions were going through my mind on what just happened: Is he okay? Why did he fall? Can I help in any way? Should I go up there? I had just seen my idol collapse and I am just going to stand here? I knew I had to do something so I got out my car and was running toward him when I heard the siren of an ambulance behind me. Thats exactly when I knew everything was going to be okay but then I saw a pool of blood beneath him. I began to worry terribly if he was going to be okay.


The next day the papers were full of very sad news. The newspapers had said Martin Luther King Jr. had got assassinated. I was in shock. I was so sad I could not go to work that day. The papers said that people did not realize how important Dr. King was until after he died. I realized right when I heard about him he would make a difference, and he did. Later the FBI found out that James Earl Ray had shot Martin King after escaping a prison in Missouri. There were also many riots in more than one hundred cities throughout the country after his death.