Kathy Budin, who like a member of radical Weather Underground of 1960s and 70s took part in murderous heist 1981 of Brink’s armored personnel carrier truck and then, in prison and after his release two decades later helped fellow inmates struggling get your life on track, died on Sunday in New York. She was 78 years old.
cause had cancer, said Zaid Dorn, whose family received Mrs. Boudin son Cheza Boudin.
On a March day in 1970, Mrs. Boudin took a shower in the townhouse. on West 11th Street in Greenwich Village when the explosion destroyed the walls around her. She and her fellow extremists made bombs there, the intended target is believed to be the Fort Dix army base. in New Jersey. Three of they were killed on place. Naked Mrs. Boudin managed to escape with colleague and found clothes and a brief shelter in home of woman living down block.
Then she disappeared.
A few years later, the Weather Underground did the same. Breakaway faction of left students for A Democratic society, it called itself Weatherman, borrowing from Bob Dylan’s 1965 Subterranean Homesick Blues. song with lyrics “You don’t need meteorologist to know which way the wind is blowing.” Title evolved at the Weather Underground.
In that era of turbulence over civil rights and the increasingly unpopular Vietnam War, group set off bombs at the US Capitol, NYPD headquarters and other buildings. Anyway, it was more adept when issuing long manifests loaded and lead with references to Karl Marx, Che Guevara and Ho Chi Minh and the statement world”main struggle as that “between American imperialism and national liberation struggle against This is.”
When the Weather Underground died out by the mid-1970s, when the war ended, its leaders, one one came out of hiding face legal implications of having been on FBI most-wanted list.
Not Miss Boudin (pronounced boo-din). “The status itself of being underground was an identity for me,” she recalled many years later. in interview with New Yorker at Bedford Hills Correctional Institution in Westchester County, New York, where she ended up in jail. She continued, “I made a difference in no way so i climbed up great importance fact that I was underground.”
It’s over in October 1981 when she teamed up up with armed men from another radical group Black Liberation Army, keep up Brink truck in Rockland County, New York, manufacturing off with $1.6 million. During the robbery, gunmen killed security guard Peter Page. They passed cash at U Haul truck who was waiting about a mile away. Miss Boudin was in Taxi of in truck38-year- an old white woman who serves as a decoy to confuse the cops who are searching for Black men.
U-Haul was stopped by the police at a roadblock. Ms Boudin, who did not carry weapons, immediately surrendered, with his hands in in air. But the militants jumped out of back of in truck and opened fire, killing Sergeant Edward J. O’Grady and Officer Waverly L. Brown. Though some accused her of surrendering as a tactic to get the police to lower their weapons before being attacked, Ms Boudin insisted that was not the case.
More than half-a dozen suspects were captured and most of them were handed over prison terms long enough to amount to life imprisonment. Among them was David Gilbert, whom Ms Boudin married after their arrests and with whom she had a son, who was 14 months old at the time of Brink’s work. Divorced in prisonthey reunited in In 2021, after Mr. Gilbert’s 75th birthday, the sentence was commuted and he was released. Chesa Boudin, raised by a pair of Weather Underground members, Bernardine Dorn and Bill Ayers, was elected District Attorney of San Francisco in 2019. Both of hers husband and son survive it.
After rounds of legal battle, Ms Boudin pleaded guilty in April 1984 to first robbery and second-degree murder in in death of Mr Page. Although unarmed and not even present at the scene of the murder of the guard, the judge agreed with prosecutors that she was responsible, and sentenced her to prison term of 20 years of life.
When sentencing, she turned to the relatives of the victims. “I know that everything I say now will be sound empty, but I express my deepest sympathy to you,” she said. “I feel real pain.” as for her motives are: “I was there out of my commitment to black liberation struggle and his underground movement. I am a white person who not want committed crimes against Black people be caring in my name.”
She turned out model prisoner in Bedford Hills, mentoring other prisoners, visiting those with AIDS, writing poetry and expression of regret for her role in Brink’s robbery death. In September 2003, after 22 years behind bars, she was released on grant of parole
Not everyone was happy. Diane O’Grady, widow of Sergeant O’Grady, wrote in The New York Post that she “did not believe that of feelings of guilt, shame, or remorse experienced by prisoner Boudin.” But Madame Boudin had had enough support, including from several Bedford Hills employees. Even archi-conservative William F. Buckley, Jr. signed the parole letter. board statement of belief in “opportunities of rehabilitation and transformation of a person”.
In a 2004 article for magazine called The Brotherhood, written before leaving prison, Ms Boudin said she “fully realized the enormity of my human responsibility: I supported and was part of of a robbery that took risks and then destroyed human life.”
Graduate 1965 of Bryn Mawr, she got her master’s degree in adult education and literacy at Norwich College while in prison and then, five years after her release, a PhD from the Teachers College of Columbia University. Message-prisoner work concentrated on present and former prisoners, especially women, helping them get parole and preparing them for a life on in outside, down back to basics like how behave in job interviews.
She was also founder of Centre for Justice in Colombia, exploring social effects of mass conclusion. How much people fail appreciate, she said in 2021 interview for this obituary, is that “there are vast resources waiting to be realized in those who too often defined as disposable people”.
Kathy Boudin knew with radical politics almost from birth in Manhattan on May 19, 1943 Her father, Leonard B. Boudin, was a civil rights lawyer. with a list of clients that made up the left Who’s Who, including Paul Robeson, Daniel Ellsberg and anti-war doctor Benjamin Spock. Her mother, Jean (Roisman) Boudin, was a poet. Her great- the uncle was Louis Boudin, a prominent civil rights lawyer, and the uncle was the liberal journalist I.F. Stone.
Except Mr Gilbert and her son survived her son, two adopted brothers, six grandchildren and older brother Michael, former federal appeals court judge and political conservative Mr. Dohrn, one of foster brothers said on Sunday.
Ms. Boudin attended Little Red Schoolhouse and Elizabeth Irvine High School. in Greenwich Village Graduation in 1961. In her senior year she visited Cuba, the country she traveled to again in 1969 with fellow radicals.
In Bryn Mawr she specialized in Russian Studies, Bachelor’s Degree in in absentia, because she studied in Moscow. She worked during the summer in hospital, camp for disabled person children and in the blood bank. She later became community organizer in Cleveland.
Her belligerence grew steadily. She is joined days of Rage” in October 1969, anti-war gunmen smashed windows in Chicago’s Gold Coast. She and others were charged with conspiracy and violation of riot control laws, cases eventually closed on grounds for government illegally obtained evidence. Around the same time, she co-authored The Book of the Bust, in which she gave advice. on what to wear to a demonstration and what to do if you are arrested.
In hiding after the townhouse bombing, Ms Boudin suggested that various aliases and took low paying job in New York, including as a waitress and in a catering company employee at the US Open tournament in Queens. She was “very sociable”, the company official said.
Brink’s robbery followed. “Remorse will always guide me,” she wrote. for Brotherhood. “This is a very personal journey. with stops along way. this is the road with There is no end.”
Alyssa Lookpat made a report.