I remember as a boy reading the Sports page and Comics in the Cincinnati Enquirer every day. I had no interest in the world events that found a place in the Front section of the paper. However, that changed one day when at the age of nine I read the following headline: “Stampede Kills 11 Persons at Coliseum Rock Concert”. I had now entered the “real world”.
Thirty years ago today, the popular rock band The Who held a concert in Cincinnati which had “festival seating” and incompetent security and management. This combination turned deadly, as a stampede occurred before the concert, leading to 11 deaths and numerous injuries. This was an incredibly traumatic event in the history of Cincinnati and I don’t think anyone who lived in the city at that time will ever forget it. It just seemed so senseless: people died how? Getting into a rock concert?
(An aside: if you read the linked article, you’ll see this line: “Kim and a group of guy friends she had met while campaigning for then-city councilman Jerry Springer had general admission tickets and arrived at about 4:30 p.m“. Yes, that is referring to THE Jerry Springer, who was a city councilman, news anchor and even Mayor of the fine town of Cincinnati before his foray into talk shows).
Pray for those who died in that tragedy and their family and friends on this day. And you might as well throw in a prayer for Jerry Spring while you are at it.