Family tree of John HINCKLEY

political murderer, terrorist

AmericanBorn John Warnock HINCKLEY

Attempted to assassinate U.S. President Ronald Reagan in Washington, D.C., on March 30, 1981

Born on May 29, 1955 in Ardmore, Oklahoma, USA , United States (66 years)

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John W. Hinckley, Jr., was born in Ardmore, Oklahoma, and moved with his family to Dallas, Texas, at the age of four. His father was John Warnock Hinckley, Sr., who was president of World Vision United States, and Chairman and President of the Vanderbilt Energy Corporation, and his mother was Jo Ann Moore Hinckley. He has two older siblings – sister Diane and brother Scott. Scott Hinckley later graduated from Vanderbilt University and became Vice President of his father's oil business, while his sister graduated from Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Hinckley grew up in University Park, Texas, and attended Highland Park High School[not in citation given] in Dallas County. During his grade school years, he played football, basketball, learned to play the piano, and was elected class president twice. After Hinckley graduated in 1973 from his Texas high school, the family, owners of the Hinckley oil company, moved to Evergreen, Colorado, where the new company headquarters was located (Hansell & Damour, 2005). An off-and-on student at Texas Tech University from 1974 to 1980, in 1975 he went to Los Angeles in the hope of becoming a songwriter. His efforts were unsuccessful, and he wrote to his parents with tales of misfortune and pleas for money. He also spoke of a girlfriend, Lynn Collins, who turned out to be a fabrication. He returned to his parents' home in Evergreen before the college school year ended. During the next few years, he developed a pattern of living on his own for a while and then returning home poor.

During the late 1970s and early 1980s, Hinckley began purchasing weapons and practicing with them. He also began taking anti-depressants and tranquilizers.


Hinckley became obsessed with the 1976 movie Taxi Driver (also, ref. 1972 assassination attempt on then state of Alabama Governor and U.S. Presidential candidate George Wallace), in which a disturbed protagonist, Travis Bickle, played by Robert De Niro, plots to assassinate a presidential candidate. He watched the film 15 times in a row on a continuous loop. Hinckley developed an infatuation with actress Jodie Foster, who played a child prostitute in the film. The Bickle character was in turn partly based on the diaries of Arthur Bremer, the attempted assassin of George Wallace. When Foster entered Yale University, Hinckley moved to New Haven, Connecticut, for a short time to stalk her. He enrolled in a Yale writing class, and began slipping poems and messages under her door and repeatedly phoning her.

Failing to develop any meaningful contact with the actress, Hinckley developed such plots as hijacking an airplane and committing suicide in front of her to get her attention. Eventually he settled on a scheme to impress her by assassinating the president, with the theory that as a historical figure he would be her equal. Hinckley trailed President Jimmy Carter from state to state, but was arrested in Nashville, Tennessee, on a firearms charge. Penniless, he went home again, and despite psychiatric treatment for depression, his mental health did not improve. He began to target the newly elected president Ronald Reagan in 1981 and started collecting information on the assassination of John F. Kennedy by Lee Harvey Oswald, whom he saw as a role model.

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Geographical origins

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