Town's fading memory of George Wallace shooting in '72 campaign

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LAUREL, Md. -- Many of Laurel's older residents can point to the precise spot in the shopping center where Arthur Bremer's gunshots paralyzed Alabama Gov. George C. Wallace and cut short his campaign for the White House in 1972.

They recall just what they were doing that May 15 afternoon when they heard that the loner from Milwaukee had shot Wallace five times as he shook hands in the parking lot of what was then the city's main retail plaza.

But 35 years later, as Laurel struggles to retain its small-town identity, the collective memory of its most famous event is fading...

Wallace, who had carried five Southern states as a fist-shaking third party candidate in 1968, was mounting a surprisingly successful run in the Democratic primaries in 1972 before Laurel...

But the shooting effectively ended his national career, diminishing the fiery charisma that had made him a dominant political force in Alabama and leaving him in a wheelchair until his death in 1998.

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