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Sunday, December 16, 2012

Bath, Michigan, 1927: Deadliest School Massacre In U.S. History, Not One Killed By A Bullet

By Susan Duclos

[Update] Welcome Facebook users!!!

With all the calls for more gun control after the tragic massacre in Newtown Connecticut at the Sandy Hook Elementary School which resulted in the deaths of 20 children aged 6 to 7 years old and six adults, it is worth noting that the worst school massacre in U.S. history where 45 people died, 38 of them elementary school children and 58 others injured, occurred without one person killed by a gun. (H/T Milton Wolf)

On the morning of May 18, 1927 Andrew Kehoe, 55,  murdered his wife by beating her to death, then set his farm buildings afire. As fire fighters arrived at his farm, an explosion devastated the north wing of the school building, killing many schoolchildren. Kehoe had used a detonator to ignite dynamite and hundreds of pounds of pyrotol which he had secretly planted inside the school over the course of many months. As rescuers started gathering at the school, Kehoe drove up, stopped, and detonated a bomb inside his shrapnel-filled vehicle with his Winchester rifle, killing himself and the school superintendent, and killing and injuring several others. During rescue efforts searchers discovered an additional 500 pounds (230 kg) of unexploded dynamite and pyrotol planted throughout the basement of the school's south wing. Kehoe apparently had intended to blow up and destroy the whole school. (Source)

The fact is there are sick individuals walking around in societies and unless we address the underlying mental illness and our inability to help mother's begging for help for their violently disturbed children, those children will grow and find the means to do massive damage.

One brave mother told her story yesterday about her child, who is one of them:

A few weeks ago, Michael pulled a knife and threatened to kill me and then himself after I asked him to return his overdue library books. His 7 and 9 year old siblings knew the safety plan—they ran to the car and locked the doors before I even asked them to. I managed to get the knife from Michael, then methodically collected all the sharp objects in the house into a single Tupperware container that now travels with me. Through it all, he continued to scream insults at me and threaten to kill or hurt me.

That conflict ended with three burly police officers and a paramedic wrestling my son onto a gurney for an expensive ambulance ride to the local emergency room. The mental hospital didn’t have any beds that day, and Michael calmed down nicely in the ER, so they sent us home with a prescription for Zyprexa and a follow-up visit with a local pediatric psychiatrist.

We still don’t know what’s wrong with Michael. Autism spectrum, ADHD, Oppositional Defiant or Intermittent Explosive Disorder have all been tossed around at various meetings with probation officers and social workers and counselors and teachers and school administrators. He’s been on a slew of antipsychotic and mood altering pharmaceuticals, a Russian novel of behavioral plans. Nothing seems to work.


When I asked my son’s social worker about my options, he said that the only thing I could do was to get Michael charged with a crime. “If he’s back in the system, they’ll create a paper trail,” he said. “That’s the only way you’re ever going to get anything done. No one will pay attention to you unless you’ve got charges.”

The heartbreaking piece goes into the statistics, with links, so it a must read piece, but the statement below is where the discussion should be right now:

I am sharing this story because I am Adam Lanza’s mother. I am Dylan Klebold’s and Eric Harris’s mother. I am Jason Holmes’s mother. I am Jared Loughner’s mother. I am Seung-Hui Cho’s mother. And these boys—and their mothers—need help. In the wake of another horrific national tragedy, it’s easy to talk about guns. But it’s time to talk about mental illness.
 Read it all.

Guns don't kill people. Knives don't kill people. Bombs don't kill people. Weapons don't kill people. Planes don't kill people (9/11).

People kill people.