Source – globalresearch.ca
- “…According to Glenn Frank’s written notes from his communications with Police Officer Bob Winkler and with Professor Barclay McMillen, both men corroborate the claim that a hit list in relation to the events of May 4, 1970, was created. The hit list, according to Glenn’s notes, is said to include (himself) Glenn W. Frank and Kent State University President Robert White. While this cannot be proven at this point in time, if such claims were to be true, it suggests the creators of the hit list wanted to keep the truth of May 4th a secret from the public”
The Kent State May 4, 1970 Shootings. New Documents Surface, Raise Serious Questions
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The Kent State community commemorated the 51st anniversary of the May 4, 1970, shootings outside Taylor Hall on Tuesday. It was a solemn gathering as many former students returned to visit the site of a tragedy where the Ohio National Guard opened fire on anti-Vietnam War protestors. The shootings resulted in the deaths of four students and nine others were wounded.
Fast-forward 51 years later and so much has changed on the Kent campus. However, the sadness brought on by the events of May 4th remains. And behind the tears, pain and uncertainty is a longing for answers.
A Timeline of Events
On April 30, 1970, President Richard Nixon announced the invasion of Cambodia, a country which remained neutral during the Vietnam War. The announcement was met with a surge in anti-war protests across the country including on college campuses like Kent State University.
Following President Nixon’s announcement, an anti-war rally was held on the Commons on Friday May 1. Protestors delivered anti-war speeches and one demonstrator even buried a copy of the Constitution to symbolize the Nixon Administration’s disregard for the historical document.
On Saturday May 2, the Ohio National Guard was ordered to duty at the university by Governor Rhodes following a request from Kent Mayor Satrom who feared that socalled radicals would destroy the city. Later that evening the ROTC building went up in flames and radical protestors were blamed for causing the fire. However, it is unknown to this day who the real perpetrators were.
By Sunday May 3, nearly 1,000 National Guard troops were present on the campus. Photographs of the university at the time resemble that of a war zone rather than an educational institution. In the morning, Governor Rhodes visited Kent State and held a press conference where he expressed disdain for the anti-war protestors. Due to the nature of the governor’s speech, it was then assumed that all protests and demonstrations were banned.
A Fateful Day
An anti-war protest was scheduled for noon on Monday May 4th near the victory bell. The protest was thought to be banned but students still gathered and exercised their right to assembly. The guardsmen ordered for the protestors to disperse but they refused and tensions began to escalate. This led to the guardsmen firing into the crowd of protestors killing four students and injuring nine others.
The four students who were killed:
- Allison Krause, 19
- Jeffrey Miller, 20
- Sandra Scheuer, 20
- William Schroeder, 19
The nine students who were injured:
- Alan Canfora
- John Cleary
- Thomas Grace
- Dean Kahler
- Joseph Lewis Jr.
- Donald Scott MacKenzie
- James Russell
- Robert Stamps
- Douglas Wrentmore
A Hero Emerges
The shooting lasted for 13 seconds and was followed with a brief period of silence before many in the crowd began to scream and cry. A tragedy had just occurred and perhaps more violence was yet to come. However, one brave and courageous man stepped up to be the voice of reason.
Glenn Frank, a biology professor on campus, was a faculty peace marshal that weekend. Earlier that day he had jumped into an ambulance and requested the driver to take him to the scene. After helping to get the deceased and wounded students into the ambulances, a group of 1,000 students sat down in front of the guard.
“The General said, you have five minutes to move those students. Another group of guardsmen began to march towards the student gathering. Glenn ran up to Major Jones, who was in charge of the guardsmen and said, ‘my God, what are you doing?’ Jones responded, ‘I have my orders.’ ‘Over my dead body,’ said Glenn. Jones then threw down his baton, but the Guard stopped. After the General gave him five minutes to disperse, he then made his impassioned plea.” — Alan Frank
Professor Frank’s actions on May 4, 1970, are said to have saved hundreds of lives. In an emotional plea to the students and protestors, Glenn Frank said:
“I don’t care whether you’ve never listened to anyone before in your lives. I am begging you right now if you don’t disperse right now they’re going to move in and it can only be a slaughter. Would you please listen to me. Jesus Christ. I don’t want to be a part of this,”
KSU faculty member Glenn Frank talking to a crowd of people, blood in parking lot is visible in background
After hearing Glenn Frank’s plea, many students left the premise and no one else was killed by the National Guard that day. However, for Glenn Frank himself, he remained deeply troubled by the events that took place. While continuing to work as a geology professor at Kent State, Glenn spent the rest of his life searching for the truth by investigating what led up to the senseless killing of four college students.
A Search for Answers
It has been 51 years since the May 4, 1970, shootings and many questions remain unanswered. The public deserves clarity. A passage of time should not comfort those in positions of power who continue to suppress the truth.
Glenn Frank’s son, Alan Frank, who was present during the May 4, 1970 shootings, shares his experience. Alan, who has been an active member of the Kent State May 4th community, revisits the work of his father who has sought answers to our many unanswered questions surrounding the events on and leading up to that day.
Interview with Alan Frank
The following is a transcript of an interview between independent journalist Taylor Hudak and Alan Frank, the son of Geology Professor Glenn Frank. The interview took place on May 4, 2021, at Kent State University.
A note from the author: Due to the passage of time and with many of the subjects deceased, I cannot independently verify all of the claims made during this interview. If you have additional information on the events leading up to and on May 4th 1970, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taylor Hudak: First of all, Alan Frank, I want to thank you for doing this interview with me. And I know it’s been 51 years since the shooting on May 4, 1970. What does it feel like to be back here on this day?
Alan Frank: Oh, it’s something very personal to me because I just feel the need to come and pay my respects. I try to do it every May 4th when I’m in town for sure. And I’m probably going to run into some people that are very close to me that I’m looking forward to seeing.
TH: If you could just take me back to May 4th, 1970, on the Kent State campus. What was your experience?
AF: Let me go back a few days before that when Nixon announced the invasion of Cambodia. On Friday May 1st, there was there were a couple of rallies on campus, one where a guy buried a copy of the Constitution. That evening I was downtown. People were getting kind of rowdy. It was a beautiful, beautiful evening. The crowd started getting a little rowdy. And I saw a lot of people that I didn’t usually recognize. There were a lot of people that just normally didn’t come downtown like that. And there are some high school kids that were going around.
Eventually a police cruiser came through and some rocks and bottles were thrown at the police car. And eventually they put a bunch of trash out into the middle of the street on Water Street and set it on fire. And then apparently police had come in and told everybody, you know, bars are shut down. So part of the crowd moved up towards Main Street, broke windows and some other things.
Two friends and I eventually kicked out the bonfire that was in the street. And a lot of times you’ll see the caption, you know, there’s two or three guys by the fire and they say these are, you know, radicals that started the fire. Now, we were there kicking the fire out and hoping that the bikers didn’t beat us up.
So that evening, my father had been out of town with my my mother. And I told them that people were out, but I didn’t know if it was a riot. Everybody says it was a riot, but I didn’t experience a whole lot of that. The next day, on Saturday May 2nd, my father was contacted by Dr. Matteson, who was in charge since Dr. White was off campus in Iowa at the time. He was asked to gather faculty marshals and they had a meeting at seven o’clock that evening.
At that time, for many weeks, a lot of people felt that the ROTC building was going to burn. So he was right by the ROTC building, a group of students who were there throwing rocks, breaking windows. Eventually, they went to Tri Towers to get some more students to back them up. They came back and started hurling more rocks and came down over the hill and tried to start the fire. And I just listened to a police report and they said, oh, the ROTC building is burning. And then about forty eight minutes into it, they said the building looks like it’s going to go back up again. So it took at least those forty eight minutes on the tape that I had heard. There were lots of stories going around about what was going on that night (Saturday May 2nd). People saw other people with walkie talkies. And I didn’t realize that many radicals use walkie talkies at that time. A lot of them had billy clubs.
TH: These so-called radicals had walkie talkies?
AF: Right, right. Yeah. So anyhow, after a good hour to an hour and a half, they attempted to burn the ROTC building. Police were standing by right by the heating plant, which was not far away from there but didn’t do anything. My dad was out there, got hit with rocks around his legs and stuff several times. My dad, Glenn Frank, was a faculty marshal. However, they they were not to get into anything with any of the students and just try to maintain order as much as possible. That was the day that he had gone out and purchased a bunch of cloth, robin’s egg blue cloth. And one of the reasons was that, and I’m sure you know this, everybody had red and blue and white bandanas. Nobody had a robin’s egg blue bandana. So he passed those out in the faculty had those and the student marshals had white armbands. So eventually the protestors ran over to an athletic shed down near the tennis courts and set the tennis shed on fire and apparently a tree started to burn and they started a bucket brigade. Well, in that time, somebody had come and finally torched the (ROTC) building. Nobody knows who.
TH: And it’s still unclear to this day?
AF: Yes, to this day. There’s 167 pages of the FBI report that are still redacted. I’ve got some pictures here, and I’ll show you. They name about 20 some people who participated in the burning of the ROTC building on May 2. However, almost half of them are redacted. And why on earth would they conceal the identities of the radicals who they suspected started the fire?
However, their names are redacted and when you look at their pictures, there’s a black magic marker that’s just been drawn across their face so you can’t tell who it is. In some parts of the burn report, there are 25 pages that are just totally deleted. You know, what’s with that?
TH: Can you think of any reason why they would do that?
AF: I’m wondering, you know, if it was a false flag operation or something like that. We had the CIA, which I’m not saying the CIA did this, but the CIA had a program called Chaos. And the FBI also had a program called COINTELPRO. So both of them had counterintelligence programs. There were every military intelligence group had people that would try to infiltrate the radical groups.
So you almost wonder whether more people were infiltrating these groups than were actually the radical students a part of these groups, but no doubt that some of the students tried to participate. I talked to Tom Grace and I said, Tom, I never knew that the the FBI released the burn report saying the students did it.
Well, no, we’re pretty sure that the students did it, he said. And I kind of called B.S. on that because there were these other people on campus that nobody recognized. So it’s hard to say, you know. Until the FBI releases the burn report unredacted, we’re never going to know. And I wonder, is it for national security? Is it for the fact that they’re hiding undercover agents? I don’t know. But so many different intelligence agencies we’re around campus at that time.
TH: Right. And there’s been there’s been a long history of infiltration in different activist groups, and it’s something that still goes on today but it’s expanded with the internet.
AF: I talked to Alan Canfora for, I don’t know, probably since this started, and he was one of the people that said, you know, we tried to start a fire for an hour and a half. We couldn’t do it. And then soon as we went away and the police surrounded the building, it went up. And I also talked to a friend of mine who is a biology professor.
His name was Denny Cooke. And I said, Denny, the Justice Department has two different quotes by you. And they say, check with Danny Cooke to see which one is correct. One was that he had seen a small fire going and the other statement was that it was almost out. And when I asked Daddy about it at the 25th anniversary, I was right over here in the Student Center and he said, Alan, you are the first person to ask me this question in twenty five years. He said, “I put the fire out.” We talked a little bit and he said again “I put the fire out” and a third time to make sure I got it he said, “I put the fire out.” And he said, “I don’t know what happened to the mob when they when they left.” But that’s what Denny had said to me.
TH: And again, what was Denny’s position or role at the university?
AF: He was a faculty marshal and a biology professor right over here. So there are so many questions. And it just it bothers me that we see things that happen in the United States, such as the January 6th attack on the Capitol building. And people aren’t trusting the police. They’re not trusting the FBI. They’re not trusting anybody. And part of that, I understand, because when you’re when you’re either not lying or you’re trying to create a situation where then you can go in and either blame it on somebody else or be the hero that solves that problem, we can’t afford to do that. I mean, it’s obvious to me that this is a great country as far as our Constitution is concerned. There are some people that are really being inappropriate with what’s happening in this country.
TH: And who would that be?
AF: Well, focusing on May 4th, what bothers me the most right now is the FBI report. I’m just concerned. I would love to see the unredacted FBI report.
TH: And specifically on what happened on the evening of May 2nd? The burning of the ROTC building?
AF: Yeah, yeah. Especially, yeah on that evening. I had another friend, who was around that evening, who sat near the victory bell watching people come out of the crowd, run up, do something and run back. And he said they did it with military precision. And I said, Man, could you write that down for me? And he said no. And I’m just wondering, is that because this is a very relatively conservative guy, but for some reason, he doesn’t want to be associated with what he saw.
TH: And he saw the fire go up?
AF: He saw the fire go up.
TH: And who is this person?
AF: Well, this is a person who has been working on my cars for four years–
TH: Do they want to remain anonymous?
TH: Ok, I understand.
AF: Yeah, and he said it was like military precision when they would come up and then go back and and he saw, you know, five to ten people who were doing this. Many of the reports say there were probably only five to ten people that were really doing it. But I think they were able to talk to students into being a part of it and thereby, you know, taking their role. Yeah.
TH: Yeah, that’s entrapment. I know we are speculating here, but do you think that that’s a possibility?
AF: I think so. And when you read the FBI report, and the FBI report is very difficult to read. The copies are bad. They don’t have the right hand margin in some of the documents and you’ve got to figure out what the words are. But this is my fifth time going through it. The first time I probably spent two hundred hours trying to figure out, you know, some of the things in the documents. When I read it. In my opinion, there should be no reason to include records of the students in the report. However, they talk within the first couple sections, they talk about, you know, the four students who were killed. You know, it mentions Bill Schroeder was a ROTC student. But in the FBI report, they put in there he was thinking about or he was having some dissonance regarding the Vietnam War and thought about going to Canada. Now, back then, that was pretty sacrilegious, you know.
TH: Right. That was a crime at the time.
TH: So they put this in the report to perhaps make it look as if it was acceptable to shoot the students?
AF: Exactly. That’s my feeling now.
TH: And that’s in the FBI report?
AF: It’s in the FBI report. And there were two FBI reports. Well, they’re very similar. One is like one out of eight and it’s about twelve hundred pages. The other is one out of twenty two, and so they’re divided up like that. But why would you even mention details about the students if you didn’t want to kind of blame them? Like Sandy Scheuer. I mean, I don’t think she was in any radical group. She was on her way to class when she was murdered. And it said, in the report, she would hang out with some of the radicals, like the long hairs and the beards and stuff like that. Why would you even put that crap in there, you know?
TH: So its included information that was unnecessary?
AF: Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. Alison Krauss, you know, they have a story about her going into one dorm that this R.A. saw her come in and she had a bottle and she had to use the bathroom. And the R.A. said, I’m pretty sure that she went in there to pee in the bottle to spray it on people. Why would you– I mean, you’re you’re making this crap up, you know?
TH: They’re smearing the victims.
AF: Exactly. Exactly. Yeah. When they’re (the victims) are mentioned like that, when in my opinion, there’s no need to have that information in there I just see it as an effort to skew the narrative in a certain direction. In another 50 years, nobody’s going to know stuff. They’re going to see, oh, well, you know, they all deserved to be shot. It’s garbage. It’s really garbage.
So there are times when I thought either the FBI report was written in a genius manner or it was it was just a total screw up just because of all of the stuff that’s in there. So just critically reading what they’ve put in there, it makes me wonder. And I don’t think it’s going to be solved until everything is unredacted.Kent State, April 4, 1970: Was It about Civil Rights or Murdering Student Protesters?
TH: Ok. Let’s shift our focus to what took place on and around May 4th. If you can please continue to share your experience.
AF: OK, Sunday, I was not on campus. My dad was was with the faculty marshals though. And just to show you kind of where I was at that point in time, I was a jock on the swim team. A lot of jocks and frat guys were against, you know, these radicals. So I was having lunch with a friend of mine in the Student Center. And after lunch, I jokingly said to him, let’s go beat up some hippies. And I ran into him a couple years ago and he said, yeah, back then we never beat up anybody, you know, we just didn’t do it. And that’s why I was joking about it.
TH: So you were more conservative?
AF: Oh, yeah, I was. I was conservative.
TH: So you were not someone who was out there protesting?
AF: I went up there on May 4th, quote, to make sure that nobody hurt the guard, you know, because I just I don’t know what I would have done. I don’t know if I could have done anything. But it was such a joke.
And so we walked up and stood behind the couple hundred people that were down below by the victory bell and that. The guard made a decision that, well, you know, the governor said there were no rallies to be allowed. The guard shot off tear gas. I went into Johnson Hall because I had stayed there as a swimming recruit.
And so I had a connection with Johnson Hall and came out after they had gone up over the hill. They walked down to the practice football field. And it was such a circus, you know, nobody was close enough to them (the National Guard). You know, all these guardsmen say, oh, yeah, we were getting pelted by rocks. And somebody said the sky was black with rocks. It’s bullshit, and it’s the lies that are put in that FBI report that really bothered me.
And the BCI report, the Bureau of Criminal Investigation report just there was there was so many things in there that that made you think all of these guys got what they deserved. Well, there were so far away from anybody. I read in Michener’s book (Kent State: What Happened and why) that a very good former baseball player went down to the site of the shooting, placed himself where one of the students was and tried to hurl a rock that he had found on the ground towards where the guard was. And he said you’d have to be Joe DiMaggio to be able to to hit anybody.
So they were picking up rocks. The general picked up a rock and threw it back at kids. The general talked later about he and his friend. There’s Canterbury and Dale Corso, who said, yeah, we had a fun time this weekend throwing rocks back at these demonstrators. Totally, totally inappropriate and totally unprofessional. But this guy kind of bragged that we messed with students.
And the number of people that had been bayonetted is higher than I had realized. One black guy was in a car bringing his girlfriend back to campus and the guardsmen went through an open window and bayoneted him. And another woman, you know, got hit in the buttocks because she was trying to get into the window of the library.
So it is just totally inappropriate what the guard was doing, which I didn’t realize at the time because it took years for that to come out. (Back to his experience on May 4th 1970) But so we get up on campus. We’re watching the circus back and forth. Some people called it a tennis match. It was just so ridiculous. The guardsmen got down and they knelt and aimed their weapons, especially towards Alan Canfora who had the black flag.
Alan Canfora waving the back flag before the National Guard on May 4, 1970. Taken by John Filo.
After about 10 minutes on the field, they started to walk back up. There’s a lot of people who are just observers on the Hill. Ten to 20 people, maybe, were throwing things. I don’t remember anybody getting hit at that time. However, as the guard is coming back up, the guardsmen report that they (the protestors) were within six inches of our bayonets. We had we had to shoot in order to extricate ourselves. And the pictures didn’t come out initially so they had the ability to make up what was really going on.
TH: They initially said that protestors were six feet from their bayonets?
AF: Inches. Six inches from their bayonets.
TH: Well, that is definitely not corroborated by the photographic evidence.
AF: Right, exactly. So who in their right mind would even get near somebody with a bayonet? Come on. This buddy of mine from the swim team and I are walking up the hill probably 50 to 75 feet in front of the guard. And we were some of the closest people there. There was no sense of danger. There were no rocks being thrown at that time that I saw, even though, people say, oh, I got hit in the stomach with a rock, I got hit in the testicles with a rock, you know, all this stuff. So I felt absolutely no danger.
But I said to my buddy, I said, Al, shouldn’t we be walking faster? And he said, what are they going to do, shoot? And I thought, how could I be so stupid to even think that. I was embarrassed for about 15 seconds. And as we walked up, they turned in unison and started firing. And we were like, whoa! And so we ran to Johnson Hall because that’s where luckily I had a connection there.
Otherwise, I might have gone down near Taylor Hall where a few other people were. The photographs don’t show that at all. So we run from the top of the hill near the pagoda down into the bathroom. The firing is still going on. It’s like the longest 13 seconds of my life. And we’re in there and we’re we’re laughing and saying they’re shooting blanks. They’re trying to scare us and all this other stuff. The National Guard went down the hill and we came out the bathroom window. And I hear this guy screaming, “They killed them! They killed them!” And in my in my mind I’m thinking what? No way. And so we came out and there’s a picture of me just kind of looking over all of this stuff. And I walked down to where Jeffrey Miller was and Mary Ann Vecchio was by him.
John Filo/Getty Images
And she was the fourteen year old runaway. But I was right there when when John Filo was was taking these shots. And I was in shock because I could not make a connection that there was any reason for anybody to fire at that time. Several of the guardsmen said, yeah, it was not a shooting situation, I didn’t feel like I was in danger, while others said they were so close to us, we were afraid they’re going to take our weapons and use them on us. So we had to shoot them. Well, between Johnson Hall and Taylor Hall there was an opening pathway. They could have gone down there if they wanted to. They said a surge came up with the rocks and the yelling. And I’m thinking, I don’t remember any of that. I remember the shooting. But it was so totally inappropriate.
TH: Initially, when you heard the gunshots, what was going through your head at the time?
AF: As we were there, we thought they were blanks and that they were just trying to scare people. So as we ran into Johnson Hall and came back out, it was like, wait a second, this is so inappropriate as well as what came after that. One guard captain said that he had walked over to Jeffrey Miller’s body and found a pistol on him, which is totally bullshit. The guard eventually claimed he said he turned it into the FBI about a month and a half to two months afterwards, after he had gotten this pistol. The FBI looked at the pistol and they said there are initials on the pistol “SNY” and the guy’s (the guard) name is Snyder. Ok, it was a drop pistol. It was a pistol that was a I think an 1850 pin fire revolver, which they don’t make ammunition for it anymore. Snyder had said he was he was in C company between Taylor and Prentice Hall. He had said he had watched Jeff Miller running back and forth towards these other guys, his buddies with a pistol saying, “kill, kill, kill.” Come on. And then and then people really went nuts and they found out that he was lying to the grand jury and everybody else and nothing was ever done. Nothing was ever done. He replaced he said that he recovered some brass knuckles, which were his.
TH: And who is this Snyder? What is his full name?
AF: Captain Ron (nickname) “Cyanide” Snyder. That’s what his nickname was to his–
TH: And what was his role?
AF: He was one of the people who was apparently making decisions on what the guard should be doing at that time. And just you know, we’re friends on Facebook. We’ve talked I’ve asked him certain questions, but it just it bothers me that he was caught lying at least a couple of times and nothing was ever done about it.
TH: So he lied that there was a gun found on Jeffrey Miller?
AF: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. And the FBI said, you know, the initials SNY make us doubt that–
TH: So the initials on the gun were SNY?
AF: SNY. Snyder is his name. s-n-y-d-e-r.
TH: So we can’t be sure of this right now. But it seems as if that gun was his and he placed it there?
AF: Yeah, well, it wasn’t even there. He had it at home. You know, he had said that he turned it into the FBI a month and a half or two months later and he said I when they were going to charge the Guardsman with something, he said, well, I’ve got the perfect solution. He said, we’ve got this gun here. And just to show that these radical students had weapons.
TH: Oh that’s beyond corrupt.
AF: Oh yeah. Yeah. There are so many stories about just inappropriate things that the guard did, and it just bothers me. It just bothers me terribly. And the FBI report continues to allow people to believe a certain narrative. On Saturday night when the fire truck came to put out the fire, the the people that were supposedly the radicals ran up and took the fire hoses slashed them with machetes and icepicks. In one part of the FBI report, which is not really part of the FBI report, but it was something my dad was given and it was all the the physical evidence. At the very end it says these were in Seabury Ford’s office. Seabury Ford was the prosecuting attorney who had been with 107th Cavalry and came out with a story in October saying they should have shot them all. And he said he keeps a loaded .45 in his desk, and that’s a different story. But that’s when my father said, wait a second, you know, we’re under a gag order. However, you’re going to allow this guy to say stuff? So he defied the judge to arrest him. He said,
I defy Judge Jones to arrest me because he knew if he arrested dad that he would have to arrest Seabury Ford. And like I said, that’s another story. But somebody was given a three foot piece of fire hose, a .32 caliber pistol and a machete. And it’s like, why would you — you wouldn’t give these back to radical students. I mean, you’ve attributed that to them and that they did this stuff. Who has them? So that was redacted at the very end of the report.
TH: So they gave these materials back to so-called radical students?
AF: Well, they gave it to somebody. I can’t say that it was radicals. Well, I’m sure it wasn’t radical students, because if there was any way to indicate that they deserved what they got they would have made it public. But I think somebody in charge got these things as mementos. One thing Ron Snyder said to me was, I’m probably the only person that has a weapon that was up on campus that day. And I didn’t respond to that statement. But, yeah, he had given he brought several illegal weapons.
He brought a .22 Beretta that he gave to Major Jones because they don’t have forgotten his sidearm. In Michener’s book, Snyder was talking about Jeff Miller running back and forth and he said, I had just about decided to shoot him with my revolver. And my dad goes, wait a second, what a captain in the guard refer to their sidearm .45 as a revolver unless he had another illegal weapon? And so then Snyder and some of his guys walked over to Jeff Miller’s body. Somebody tried to tow him over the guard and people went nuts. I mean there was blood just flowing down the the asphalt. And one of the things Synder had said was I had gone over to make sure he was dead. Now, my dad said if you weren’t part of the shooting, wouldn’t you go over to make sure he was alive?
TH: That is a great question. It doesn’t add up. But I wanted to ask you about your dad, Glenn Frank’s, role in all of this? Because he had a significant role on May 4, 1970, and is credited with saving many, many lives.
AF: Absolutely. Absolutely. When he kind of jumped into an ambulance and it shows them going up near Taylor Hall in this ambulance, he kind of just said, that’s it, take me up there. You got out and I was wandering around in a daze, I’m sure. And I walked up to him and he pointed his finger at me and he goes, You get the hell out of here.
TH: Your dad said this to you?
AF: My dad. Yeah.
TH: How did you feel at the moment?
AF: I knew I wasn’t going to get out of there because what I had seen was murder. You know, there’s just absolutely no way.
TH: Were you there when you dad told the students to leave and that this wouldn’t end well?
AF: Yes. Yeah.
TH: Tell me about that moment.
AF: There were probably a 1,000 students who were there including jocks and fraternity guys and other people who had come together because it was like, wait a second we’re, you know, here for this. However, we just we just saw what you (The National Guard) did. And so I sat down and many, many other people sat down.
My dad and I never talked about this, but I’ve always wondered what would I do if I thought my son might be in a situation where within five minutes you have to either move out of the scene or they’re going to come in and start shooting again. And just one bullet into a crowd would probably go through at least six, seven, eight people. So it would have been a slaughter. And and my dad even mentioned that. But I was not going to move. I remember him coming back and forth between The Guard and the students and some of the other faculty. And I thought, this guy is going to try to get me to move and I’m not moving. I made my decision. I just saw murders take place. And this was the only thing I felt that I could do to protest. But when he said what he said and then he ended up with “Jesus Christ, I don’t want to be a part of this,” it was shocking. Nobody swore back then, especially my dad.
Never. I mean, it was such an incredible moment. I think Jerry Lewis said it was 50 some words, and people heard that and we all just started to stand up and walk away. And I saw Dad and he had his head down and he was kneeling on the ground. He was crying. And I thought somebody had hit him in the head with a rock. That’s all I could think of. And a friend and I walked him over to the tennis courts just to get away from The Guard. And, yeah, he saved hundreds of lives that day. No question. And I was one of them, you know, because I was not going to listen to him. I was not going to move.
TH: Your dad had dedicated so much of his life to investigating exactly what had happened on that day. Can you talk about why your dad was so passionate about getting to the truth?
AF: One of the things that my dad said was that he was so high on America. And he would do whatever it took to find it out what really happened. He was like he was in the Marines, he was a scout leader, he was a Boy Scout. He was pretty conservative, which is where I’m sure I got my views from at the time. And the more that he looked into it, the more he said, my country doesn’t do this, my country doesn’t do this. I’m sure he felt that the country was constitutionally wonderful, and he just he could not believe that that this happened.
TH: Do you think it changed his faith in the system and in the intelligence community?
AF: Yeah, yeah. He was able to contact people in the CIA. He got access to the quote secret police files. He had friends all over and they were pretty much conservative, law abiding people. He was in the Fraternal Order of the police. He had the ability to talk to anybody just about anything and add a different perspective. And he said, I’ve always felt that I need to know my part and I need to know the other part as well as I can to be able to to discuss a situation. And so for years, I don’t know if he ever had good access to the FBI report. But I came across a couple files, you know, within the last month or so that were just sitting up in my attic. And he had so many files on so many people. I mean, if he talked to somebody about Kent State, he would he would make a file. Part of the court issue in October was when the prosecuting attorney said they should have shot all students, somebody started a petition drive to support him. And there were like 5-6,000 signatures in this one file of people that said, yeah, we’re going to support him. He was finally arrested, I think was the last day of probably spring quarter. And he announced a class if somebody comes in everything’s fine.
TH: And what exactly was he arrested for?
AF: He was arrested for breaking the gag rule.
TH: Ok, let’s talk about the aftermath here and the investigation. Your dad was he skeptical of the official narrative, right?
AF: Eventually, he was. I think initially he felt ok this is this is what it appears to be. He talked to certain professors that had maybe more of a radical viewpoint and they gave him enough information that he started to question the official findings. And eventually he testified in front of the Scranton commission. And the Scranton Commission essentially said that they felt that the guardsman had fabricated the story about all these students at the time after the fact. He felt that they got together and said that no this isn’t what happened. And the more information he was able to obtain, the more he questioned some of the things that people, not the government necessarily, but people were claiming what happened. So it was just such a painful event. He and I never ever really talked about it.
TH: You never really talked about it?
AF: No. Oh, no, no. I mean, I remember one time one of the police officers had mentioned to him that he was on a hit list–
TH: Wait. What kind of hit list?
(See attached photo evidence for more details)
AF: A hit list, an assassination list. He was told by a person that he was on two assassination lists. President White was on two or three and he said he was only on one.
And it was almost like he was sharing this information with my dad and my dad’s thinking, why the hell would I be on any of them? You know? So anyhow, finally, Dad said to the guy, are you CIA? And the guy just kind of stopped. And he said, well, no, but we’ve had a long relationship.
TH: Well what does that mean?
AF: Exactly. Exactly!
TH: This man told your dad that he was was on an assassination list?
AF: Yes and so did one of the police chiefs.
TH: And who is this person? Do you know?
AF: His name is Barclay McMillen. (McMillen was a professor at Kent State at the time) And he wrote some things about what was happening. I don’t know what his official position really was. But the CIA had another program way back when where they were recruiting or getting people from the CIA to be involved in university positions.
TH: So there was a CIA program to infiltrate the universities?
AF: Yeah, yeah. So not only the radical student organizations which they tried to get into and infiltrate and they create problems when there were no problems. I shared this with Alan Canfora before he died that that this guy was a DEA agent. And you don’t know if these people are CIA or exactly what because the CIA has had the ability to put people in certain positions where you didn’t know that they were really CIA. I mean, I’ve heard that once a spook, always a spook. And so with this particular guy, in 1972, he went to the Vietnam vets–
TH: What is his name? Who is he?
AF: His name is Ron Reinhold Mohr. And Reinhold Moore told people at the VVAW, Vietnam Vets Against the War, that they should kill some pigs. And they said, really? He said he had a an automatic AK 47 and a grenade launcher. And they said, oh, gosh, you know, why don’t you bring them over so we can take a look at them? In the meantime, they contacted the Kent Police, the city police, and they said we got this nut case that saying that we should kill pigs. And one of the people that he had talked about was a guy named Willie, big, heavyset black guy who is the most wonderful person.
I mean, if anybody ever hurt him, whether it was radicals or whatever, they would have been wiped out. The students would be angry because Willie was just a wonderful person and he (Mohr) suggested that Willie should have been killed. And so anyhow, they contacted the Kent City Police and they (VVAW) arranged for this guy to come over and show them the weapons. There was the AK 47 in, you know, an automatic weapons. You’ve got many times you’ve got a gas port and there was a little tiny hole drilled into the gas port. So you had to continue to pull the trigger. You couldn’t just pull the trigger and then, you know, shoot automatically. And so what happened was they came in, they busted the guy, took him down to the police station essentially, and just said they get a call from the Kent State University police saying you just busted our number one undercover agent.
TH: Is there any proof or documentation of this?
(See annex for photos of documents)
AF: I’ve got reports from a guy by the name of Mike White who writes about it. Another guy by the name of Alan Morris was with the VVAW at that time. So lots of people have talked about this. They they eventually let him go since it was an automatic weapon and a grenade launcher despite that it was illegal.
I think they were made illegal in the 68′ if I’m not correct. But anyhow the ATF had to be called in Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms because this is illegal. And so they came in and they examined the weapons and they said, well, the AK 47 had a little hole drilled into the gas chamber and the VVAW said it would take is one little tiny spot weld and it would be fully automatic because it’s the guts inside that make it an automatic, either semiautomatic or automatic. So they said that it wasn’t really automatic and they said there were no gas containers for the grenade launcher or no grenades with the grenade launcher, and so it’s like, wait a second, why? You know, this is bullshit. Anyhow, Reinhold Moore eventually got sacked at the university, sued later, got his position back, plus all of his back pay. He sued the university to get his job back in his back pay and eventually was successful in doing that.
Article from The Daily Kent Stater, April 26, 1972
AF: Yeah. So, you know, the people that are pulling the strings will do it for what they feel is appropriate. But, you know, Reinhold Moore, I saw his name on a thing that they said they were DEA agents. There were three DEA agents on campus at that time. And there was also, a document that dad got from the police. It was a list called the Mod Squad. And there are thirty two people, students, whatever, police that were on the Mod Squad, undercover.
And Reinhold Moore was one of the people, an agent provocateur, getting this stuff out there. I’m reminded of my dad trying to talk to Bob White about this. Bob White was the president of the university and he and Bob had a great relationship. A the little side story– many years before Bob White had announced to the faculty that tuition was not going to go up a certain quarter. So my dad got in the class and a sudden, Bob White said tuition is going to go up. And my dad was furious and he called up Bob. And Bob said, Glen, now I want you to just wait for a moment. Wait five minutes, and if you still feel the same way, call me back.
So my dad watched his watch to the second call him back, told him what he thought and tuition didn’t go up that next quarter. I mean, there weren’t that many professors on campus at that time and a lot of people knew everybody else. But he wanted Bob to tell them what happened on May 4th. He would ask Bob and say, just tell me. And Bob said, I cannot. And this was many years later. This is probably close to 20 years later. Bob gave my dad a letter saying I cannot comment on something that’s still actionable. So somebody is telling him, you say this and you’re going to get in trouble.
And eventually Bob sent him a little letter saying, Glenn, you’re a good guy, a good man, and I’m sorry that you’re so– I can’t remember the exact word that he (Bob) used. But essentially, it said, I want to tell you that from my better than average point of view, there were crazies on all sides. And he said that’s more than two or three. I can’t remember exactly what was was in the letter. But I think he died with information that we need to know about. And from Bob, we will never, never hear it. So I think it’s going to take either people that were actively involved in in this stuff. I think that the people that were that were redacted in the FBI report should come forward. Most of them are probably dead. And many people had never seen so many of these quote radicals before on campus.
TH: It’s quite telling the FBI would redact the names and black out the faces of some so-called radicals but not others. I mean that cannot be common practice?
AF: Yeah. It’s crazy. Isn’t that crazy?
TH: It is. I mean, I can’t verify this but it seems a likely explanation is that these people were cops or informants working for the police. But I want to shift the focus back to your dad and the work he was involved with after the shootings. What was it like to see him research and dedicate so much of his time to determining what happened on May 4th, 1970? And also, did his perspective on the United States change after all of this?
AF: I saw what it was doing to him. I saw that he was just so focused on getting whatever information that he could. And I said, Dad, why why are you doing this? But I didn’t have the knowledge that he had. Had I had this knowledge, I would have been going, wow, are you kidding me? You know, this is incredible. So hopefully he had access to certain parts of the FBI report. I really don’t know. He died in 93′ so 23 years afterwards. But he didn’t care where the truth took him, but he just wanted the truth to come out. He talked to governors and he talked to anyone who could give him information.
TH: Did the official reports or initial media coverage of the May 4th shootings coincide with what you experienced on that day?
AF: No, no. Well, to say that The Guard felt that they had to fire to extricate themselves. No way. I was one of the closest people to them. I would guess 50 to 75 feet away because we were walking, you know, just in front of them. But Joe Lewis was giving them the finger. Larry Shafer is the only guardsmen who admitted to shooting someone and he shot Joe Lewis. And he said that this guy (Lewis) was approaching him.
He (Larry) said I couldn’t see what was in his left hand and in his right hand he was giving him the bird. Reports are that he was anywhere between 60 and 71 feet away when Shafer fired. Apparently, he shot him twice, once in the leg and once in the groin. And the story that I had heard was that he bragged about it. You know, I shot him in the gullet, you know, when they all went down by the ROTC building, that was burned. And a couple of people fired their shotguns.
James Russell was hit by shotgun around 350 feet away. Another friend of mine said that he was up on the railing at Taylor Hall. And there are a lot of people at Taylor Hall, but they fired down into the parking lot. The closest person was Jeffrey Miller who was 270 feet away. Sandy and Bill were, I think, 390 feet away when they were killed. And Allison was 330 feet away. So there’s absolutely no way that these people were a danger to anybody.
AF: It’s almost like people who are being bullied and they finally have a chance to get back at the bully. I just feel that many of the guardsmen felt, fuck you, you know, we’re going to show you.
TH: I can see that. So taking a step back a little bit and looking at the broader picture, what does it tell you about the United States military industrial complex? I mean, these were students who were protesting the Vietnam War, and they have a right to do that. And meanwhile, the intelligence community is, and still to this day, putting a lot of funding, time, money and energy into these different programs to infiltrate these activist groups. What does it tell you about the importance of the United States’ war efforts?
AF: There’s a person that I contacted within the last year or two, his name is Christopher Pyle. He was either a major or a captain in charge of army intelligence. And they had over a thousand agents that would infiltrate these different groups.
TH: At what time was this?
AF: He finally came out with this in April of 1970, and said we got to stop this. So just just before the shootings. It’s Christopher Pyle. He’s a professor at Mount Holyoke. I contacted him about the possibility that it could have been Army intelligence that burned the building. He didn’t think so because essentially that would be a good a good skill to have, even though around the United States, several ROTC buildings were burned and one was in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and that guy was an FBI agent. People say there were no provocateurs. Sorry. Every military agency except possibly the Coast Guard. I don’t know. I’ve never seen anything but the Coast Guard, but Army Air Force, Marines, Navy, and NCIS and Navy intelligence. They all had these programs. And the purpose was to infiltrate these groups. And how many of those people that might try to turn up the heat just a little bit like Reinhold Mohr. How many people before that? There are so many stories about Central Intelligence having agents who were following Mark Rudd from, I think, Mark is at Colombia?
TH: And he was with Weather Underground at the time.
TH: Ok, you can continue.
AF: You know, my buddy who said he had seen these five or ten people on Saturday night he purposely stayed away on Monday because he didn’t trust what could happen. And he was right.
TH: Now, I want to shift focus back on your dad and the work that he’s done. What was his perspective on, say, the United States after this had happened as well as the military and the intelligence agencies?
AF: You know, deep down, I believe he just he felt that we still have the greatest country in the world, but the things that certain people were doing was just totally inappropriate.
TH: It’s been 51 years since the shootings, how has this impacted the Kent State community and what has the community done to commemorate the lives lost and honor those who were impacted?
AF: I’m fairly certain that the community wanted to let it go. I mean, even weeks later, people were saying, oh, come on, this is old news. I never knew that the quote radicals on campus were were bad enough that they would go up to the store owners and threaten them with burning their shops if they didn’t put either peace signs or “get out of Vietnam” signs on their windows. So my dad was like, ok, yeah, I understand where they were coming from. But essentially they’re believing the big lie, you know, and it’s a big lie. And it’s just so unfortunate. And for me, in this day and age, I think it’s going to be so important to recognize the mistakes that we’ve made and decide that we can’t continue to do this. Or else we’re going to get more people breaking into The Capitol, etc. We can’t we we can’t afford to continue the way we’re going.
TH: Can you be a little more specific?
AF: We can’t continue to have people create problems and then have those same people solve the problems that were created. So it bothers me. And, you know, I still believe this is still one of the greatest countries, but we have screwed so many things up. It’s the individuals. It’s the individuals that think that they’re above the law that are doing things that are just totally inappropriate.
TH: You have been very involved in the Kent State May 4th community and keeping the memory going. How has that process been over the past 50 years?
AF: Well, relating back to the town and gown relationships, it used to be terrible. It was terrible. And I see people that are trying to pull some of the stuff together. I’ve also seen the people that still believe that they should have shot more students or all students don’t know some of the things that actually happened to get us to that point. You know, and as I said, why would you even have something in an FBI report about people who were murdered that demonizes them? You’re going after the victim again. And I just want to be able to trust what people say initially. Maybe it’s my naiveté, but initially I want to believe what people are doing until I find out, wait a minute, yeah, that’s not true. That’s that’s not even close.
TH: What has it been like organizing events with others who were also present on that day? Is there a group of people from your generation who are keeping this going?
AF: Yeah, and myself and three or four other people were trying to give support to the May 4th Task Force. And I used to tell Alan (Canfora) all the time, thank you for doing what you do because I wasn’t physically capable of doing it. I continue to have chronic pain. And there are times that I can’t do it, but there are times I can’t not do it. It’s too important. And I even talked to Seymour Hersh and he was like, oh, come on, what do you you know, why are you doing this? And he had told me that Kent State had offered him a lot of money to come and speak. And I said, well, just come to my house and stay, you’ll have a much better time just hanging out than you will with the university people. He sees so many things and he has information about so many activities that he just felt, you know, he thought it was just ill-trained guards.
TH: Sy Hersh? Really?
TH: When was this? When did you last speak with him?
AF: Oh, within I say, I was trying to think if it was before covid. Within the past few years or so.
TH: We, of course, today still have many protests in the United States. But what are your thoughts on how protests and organizing today has changed compared to back in 1970.
AF: I think one of the most important things is that everybody walks around with a camera, essentially. And they can film the actual things that are occurring, such as the George Floyd killing. Had we believed what was in the initial report that George Floyd had a medical emergency essentially is nothing compared to the filming of the actual event.
And yet we had a lot of people that were photographers taking pictures that day (May 4th 1970). A lot of the things that haven’t come out, as far as I’m aware, you know, there just hundreds of pictures from that day. I’m not sure about anybody else. But for me, I’m always aware that I never want to say something that I wouldn’t want the entire world to know about me. And with Derek Chauvin, I don’t know that he could have possibly thought the inappropriateness of his restraint with George Floyd. How was it that he didn’t think somebody’s going to come back and show this unless he just felt that, you know, police had immunity?
TH: So lastly, is there anything else you want to add? Anything else you would like to say about your dad and his legacy?
AF: Yeah. My dad would be the last person to ever think that he was a hero that day. But he was. He absolutely was.
And some people have seen 1981 docudrama of him, and the person who portrayed him is nothing at all like him. This guy was a homer milquetoast.
And my dad would do whatever he needed to do. Like when we all sat down in front of The Guard and he basically said “if you’re going to shoot somebody, shoot me.” He ran up as Major Jones was coming down the hill with a whole line of guardsmen. And unfortunately, a friend that helped with this video that’s on the website absconded with this film. And in 25 years, I finally found out that he’s around this area. But essentially it shows Dad running up to Major Jones. And Major Jones said, I have my orders and my dad said over my dead body. And that’s when Jones threw his baton down. And but they stopped. And my dad meant it. He absolutely meant it– if you’re going to kill somebody, kill me.
TH: Very heroic.
TH: Alan Frank, thank you for your time and for sharing your story with me today.
Glenn Frank’s work researching the Kent State May 4th, 1970, shootings may be found here.
“I can’t understand this reluctance to tell the truth unless there is something to hide. If, on the other hand, the truth has been presented, why does the evidence seem to conflict with public perceptions?” — Glenn Frank
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Glenn Frank’s handwritten notes during his phone call with Police Officer Bob Winkler on September 22, 1989, from 9:30 to 12:00:
Glenn Frank’s handwritten notes during his phone call with KSU professor Barclay McMillen on Friday November 24, 1989 at 2pm (1 hour phone call):
Glenn Frank’s handwritten notes during a second phone call he received from professor Barclay McMillen on Saturday December 24, 1989, at 10am.
According to Glenn Frank’s written notes from his communications with Police Officer Bob Winkler and with Professor Barclay McMillen, both men corroborate the claim that a hit list in relation to the events of May 4, 1970, was created.
The hit list, according to Glenn’s notes, is said to include (himself) Glenn W. Frank and Kent State University President Robert White. While this cannot be proven at this point in time, if such claims were to be true, it suggests the creators of the hit list wanted to keep the truth of May 4th a secret from the public.