Effect of  the Oklahoma City Bombing

photo of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building
photo cursty of scribblguy.50megs.com

I   interviewed my aunt , Carlas M. Duke, about the Oklahoma City Bombing on

April 19th 1995. Even though she was deeply affected by this event, she was still willing to express her feelings about the bombing. She told me that on the morning of April 19th, 1995 a rental truck pulled up in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal building in downtown Oklahoma City, and that nobody paid much attention to the driver as he calmly walked away from the truck down the street to a getaway car. A few minutes later at 9:02a.m., the truck exploded with enough force to almost collapse the entire building killing 168 people, many of them children, and injuring hundreds more. She told me that   it was at that time the worst terrorist attack on American soil in history. Just 90 minutes later at a traffic stop near Billings Oklahoma, an Oklahoma State trooper arrested Timothy McVeigh on a weapons charge. On April 20th after authorities reviewed surveillance videotapes and interviewed eye witnesses, they released sketches of two suspects, John Doe No.1 and John Doe No. 2 to the media and all law enforcement offices. On April 21st just before he was to be released on bond, Timothy McVeigh was recognized as a possible suspect in the bombing. After an investigation, McVeigh and his accomplice, Terry Nichols, were charged with the bombing.

 By this point my aunt was terribly upset about remembering this tragic incident, however; she still allowed me to ask her some questions these are a few of the questions I asked her. What were you doing when you heard of the bombing? She told me she was at home doing housework at the time. How did you find out about the bombing? She had the television on at the time and a special news bulletin came on the air talking about a bombing in Oklahoma City. What was your first reaction to the news? She told me she was stunned and shocked that something like this could happen and so she immediately stopped doing housework to watch the news. What did you think caused the explosion? Her very first reaction was a possible gas leak or foreign terrorist. When you found out that many children were killed and injured what was your  reaction? Absolute disgust, she could not believe that somebody from this country could do that to their own countrymen. How did the nation react to the bombing? She told me she thought most of the nation was shocked and scared that it might have been done by foreign terrorist, but just the fear that it could happen again in another city was very strong for several days after the bombing. At the time what did you think should happen to those responsible? I thought they should have been put in a building and blown up like they did to their victims!” Timothy McVeigh was executed on June 11th, 2001 what did you think of his punishment? I think that if he could have, he should have been executed 168 times.”

This event changed the way my aunt looked at the nation and the world. The bombing not only shook a nation, but it shook my aunts trust in people. Now she looks when somebody parks a rental truck in front of a building she is near, and it makes her wonder, just wonder what if…I learned so much from my aunt about the Oklahoma City Bombing when I conducted this interview because it happened when I was very young so I do not remember what happened that day up until this interview all I knew about the bombing was that it happened and when Timothy McVeigh was executed was that he had blown a place up I didnt know he was the one responsible for the Oklahoma City Bombing.

photo of bomb site
photo curtsy of

www.fpp.co.uk/BoD/ Oklahoma/Oklahoma.html

photo curtsy of dart2.arc.nasa.gov

Oklahoma City Bombing

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