Printed from America's Survival, Inc. - http://www.usasurival.org/
Remarks by James Pera at America’s Survival, Inc. “Justice for Victims of Terrorism” conference, March 12, 2009.
Good Afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen,
I flew out here from California, today, because I thought that it was important to impress upon the nation what it was like to be a police officer during the time, when the Weather Underground and its affiliate organization, the Black Liberation Army, were conducting their terrorist activities against our infrastructure and in particular the police.
Let me summarize, briefly, my own experiences.
Although I did not participate in any investigations regarding these two cowardly and despicable groups, I was at the scene of their dastardly deeds on three occasions and have knowledge of other atrocities that they participated in; incidents that caused death and destruction.
First let me start with the bombing of Park Police Station, in San Francisco, Calif., on the night of February 16, 1970. I was a young 24 year old patrolman, with a pregnant wife and infant daughter.
I was working the 7pm to 3am shift, with my partner, Bob Fife. It was a rainy night and we were heading into the station to do reports. While on Haight Street and several blocks from the station, an emergency call came out over our police radio from a Patrol Special Officer, by the name of Serge White. His call, although calm, was issued in a very urgent voice and went, "406 Park Station. Send six ambulances. We just had a bombing!"
I was driving the police vehicle and floored the accelerator, as I sped down Haight Street, rounded the corner, going south on Stanyan and then proceeded right on Kezar Drive traveling west. I entered the parking lot, of the station, where I came to a screeching halt.
There had, indeed, been a bombing and the first thing that my eyes beheld were two of my fellow police officers, Ron Martin and Al Arnaud. Ron was getting up off the ground and Al, the son of a Deputy Chief, who later resigned to become a lawyer, was propped up on one arm, obviously dazed.
Martin and Arnaud had been about to enter their police vehicle, in preparation for working the midnight watch, when the bomb went off, its deadly fragments barely missing them. Fortunately, for them, the Sergeant’s Police vehicle, which was parked between their car and the window ledge, where the bomb had been planted, took the brunt of the outward blast, saving the two officers from death.
There were gaping holes in their car, one of which was in the left front fender and had just missed Officer Martin’s leg. Had the shrapnel been over just a few more inches, Ron Martin would have probably lost a leg or an ankle or even worse been killed. As it was, both officers were knocked down by the concussion from the bomb blast, a blast so powerful that bomb fragments were found on the roof of the three story, Polytechnic High School, almost two blocks away, across the street from Kezar Stadium.
As my partner and I alighted from our vehicle and went to assist, we were met by Sergeant Paul Kurpinski, a well liked and respected man, that we all referred to as the "silver fox" because of his gray hair. He grabbed me and my partner and told us to cordon off the parking lot area, where the bomb had been planted, on the window sill, in order to keep people out. At that point there was a concern that another bomb might be present. Furthermore, the station gas pump was in this area and its location was cause for concern.
As we were getting our instructions from Sergeant Kurpinski, Sergeant Don Lemstrom, came on the scene and Kurpinski just shook his head and stated to Lemstrom, "Brian’s gone." I will never forget the look of bewilderment, on his face, when he uttered those words, nor will I forget the shock on Lemstroms face.
My partner and I stood outside, cordoning off the area, for several hours, as investigators and brass arrived and started collecting evidence and towing vehicles. We watched as the ambulances came and left, carrying our wounded coworkers.
A large crowd gathered out in the street and were kept back from the station. Little did I know that my late father was out in the street, frantically trying to find out if I was alive or dead. He had been watching the late night news, when the report of the bombing was announced and had tried to call the station. Being that the phones were out and would not be up for several hours, he, as I'm sure others did, rushed to the station, in order to find out how their police officer family members were. Imagine the panic that must have consumed them in the hours of uncertainty that passed between the bombing and information coming out as to who was and was not a casualty.
Once released from perimeter security, I went into the station, along with my partner and saw first-hand the carnage that the bomb had reaped upon my work place and friends.
The window to the business office and an interior window, where prisoners were processed for booking were blown out. The walls and furniture were pock marked by shrapnel. Barbed wire fence post staples, from the bomb, were scattered throughout the ground floor of the station. Blood was all over the floor, desks and walls and was heaviest where Sergeant Brian V. McDonnell suffered mortal wounds to his neck, eyes, face and brain.
The station looked like a scene one might expect to see in a war, with wounded officers, blood, shattered windows, damaged walls, floors and ceilings, but then -- it was a war. It was indeed an urban war and it was being conducted by subversive and murderous groups, such as the Weather Underground, whose doctrine advocated the overthrow of the U.S. government, by any means, including murder and assassination, with the goal of replacing it with communism, and by their allies in the Black Liberation Army, whose primary purpose was to kill police officers and destroy our system of government as we know it.
The bomb had been set to explode at the change of watch, when the largest number of police officers would be in the business office, coming on and going off duty. The oncoming officers would be filling out hot sheets, making entries in their notebooks and checking teletypes for wanted criminals and crimes that had occurred. The officers going off duty would be wrapping up their paper work and finishing up reports, prior to reporting off duty.
The bomb went off prematurely by a few minutes and many of the officers were still upstairs in the locker room or just coming down and the office wasn't loaded with the full capacity that it would have been a few minutes later.
Inside the office were Sergeant Brian V. McDonnell, Officer Bob Fogarty, Officer Frank Rath. Nearby was Sergeant Paul Kotta.
Sergeant McDonnell was checking teletypes across the room from the window where the bomb was placed. He was looking at the results of the Police Officers Association election, in which he was running for station representative. Standing next to him was Officer Fogarty, a big friendly Irishman, who was the Patrol Wagon driver.
Officer Frank Rath, a native of New York City, was seated at the desk in a corner, bounded by the window where the bomb was placed, on the south side and another window on the east.
When the bomb exploded, Sergeant Brian McDonnell, along with Officer Fogarty, took the brunt of the blast. The sergeant took shrapnel, which consisted of barbed wire fence post staples through his eyes, throat and brain. Officer Fogarty took nineteen of the staples in his body, miraculously none of them hitting any vital organs, but blinding him in one eye, an injury that ultimately led to his retiring on disability.
Frank Rath had leaned back against the east wall, from the desk where he was seated and the blast blew out the window, in from of him. He was momentarily knocked senseless and when other officers rushed downstairs to assist those who had been wounded, they found him wandering around in an incoherent daze, with his gun out, not knowing what had hit him.
Sergeant Paul Kotta, who was nearby, was knocked unconscious, and several more officers sustained varying injuries, the most prominent being damage to their hearing. A couple of those officers were Bob O'Sullivan and Ed Buckner. The others have slipped my mind with time.
Officer Jerry Doherty, a good friend of mine, who was a mentor and later became my Lieutenant, when I was a Sergeant, rushed to the aid of Sergeant McDonnell, ripped off his uniform shirt and applied pressure to the sergeant’s neck wound, in an attempt to stop the bleeding, Unfortunately, the sergeant died a couple of days later, without regaining consciousness. He left a wife and two kids. He was forty-five years old, his life snuffed out by the murderous cowards of the Weather Underground.
As a side note and to add some more of the human element to the story I would like to add that my wife, who was pregnant, had been home, doing dishes and watching the news, just after feeding our infant daughter. She was tired and fed up with the news of rioting and unrest on the college campuses and streets of America and turned the T.V. off in disgust. She finished her household chores and went to bed. She slept peacefully through the night, knowing nothing of the deadly drama that had unfolded at Park Station. I feel very fortunate for this because I don't know what the trauma of uncertainty would have caused her or my second daughter, who she was carrying, if she had been subjected to the emotions and fear that would have accompanied the uncertainty of my status.
The next morning, I remember seasoned day watch officers coming into the station stunned and in shock. I remember one of them, in particular, an old timer who was usually a joker and a funny guy. He broke down in tears, unable to grasp what had happened to his friends and the station that he had worked at for so many years.
Think about this people and absorb the incident that I have just related to you.
Think about the tragedy that befell the McDonnell family, a family that had already lost two other members, in the line of duty, the first in the 1930s and another in the 1950s.
Think of Sgt. McDonnell, his life stolen from him, at the age of 45, and his wife and children being left without a father and husband.
Think about all the wounded and maimed officers and their families.
Think about the ignorant and clueless people who believe that just because this incident happened thirty nine years ago that "we should just all move on and let the past stay in the past." I've got news for them. The dead don't rise. They stay dead.
Think about Sergeant McDonnell and all the murdered and maimed victims, of the Weather Underground, when you see the smug, unrepentant face of the sniveling, gutter crawling rat, who goes by the name of Professor Bill Ayers.
Think about his loathsome wife, Bernardine Dohrn, who has been named by former undercover informant, Larry Grathwohl, as the wretched sub-human scumbag who planted the bomb that killed Sergeant McDonnell.
Think about these two criminals, Ayers and Dohrn, who got off on technicalities because a judge ruled that evidence against them collected by the FBI was inadmissible.
Think about Ayers' statement, after the dismissal of criminal charges, when he said,"Guilty as hell and free as a bird."
Think about Ayers and Dohrn and their positions, as educators, at two different prestigious universities, the University of Illinois at Chicago and Northwestern University.
Think of how they have access to the minds of impressionable young students, in the controlled environment of academia, free to spread the radical ideas that they espouse, some of which were developed and nurtured on trips to Cuba and in consultation with agents from other communist countries. Think about the role that they play as they endeavor to corrupt a whole new generation of young, impressionable people, to their radical Marxist ideas.
Think about how Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn and others of their ilk have lived and prospered in our society, a society that they had hoped to destroy.
Think about how these two Marxist-Leninist traitors are allowed to breathe the air of freedom, when they should be gasping on the stagnant stenches of a prison cell or better yet mouldering in a post-execution gravesite.
Before giving these two despicable people a forum, in your newspapers and periodicals, perhaps you should do a little bit of research, on their past and present activities. You will find that under those calm facades and intellectual masks, that Bill Ayers and his wife, Bernardine Dohrn, are vicious, cowardly terrorists.
Give up your political correctness, overcome your liberal bias and do some honest research into the background of these two criminals, Ayers and Dohrn. Uncover their past and reveal them to the public. The American people deserve nothing less.