News, Watts Riots: 50 Years Later »

Remembering Watts: Listeners reflect on the 50th anniversary

Posted August 10, 2015 by | 0 Comments | ]
Man sweeps broken glass in front of Chesley Jewelry store, in Watts. Photo Courtesy: Los Angeles Public Library

Fifty years ago, Watts erupted. A white traffic officer stopped a black driver named Marquette Frye, suspecting him of drunk driving. The stop led to an altercation. A crowd gathered and tensions that had been simmering for many years boiled up to the surface, sparking six days of unrest. More than 1000 people were injured, 34 were killed, many buildings were burned to the ground, and businesses …

la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘We did a whole lot of damage to our own neighborhoods’

Posted May 1, 2012 by | 5 Comments | ]

Thanks to all of our listeners who shared stories of the LA Riots. Here are some of them.

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Listeners Remember: ‘It was a really scary and confusing time’

Posted April 27, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]

Listener Loanie Huynh Fulton remembers being eleven-years-old when the LA Riots broke out. She says, “It was  a particularly tense time in terms of social interactions and in some sense there was a lot of racial profiling going on among students. ”

la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘Most people were scared’

Posted April 25, 2012 by | 47 Comments | ]
Ted Brennan now

KCRW listener, Ted Brennan had just gotten out of the army when the 1992 riots broke out. He was with the National Guard and was deployed from San Diego to Los Angeles to help patrol the city. He said that the community welcomed the National Guard when they rolled into Koreatown. Listen to his story below.

If you want to share your story, please do! …

Arts & Culture, la riots, Video »

Listeners Remember: ‘I was playing with Lou Reed when everything went weird’

Posted April 25, 2012 by | 1 Comment | ]

KCRW listener and bassist Michael Blair shares his memory of the LA Riots on our Facebook page.

I was playing with Lou Reed when everything went weird. During sound check we could feel something happening around town. And we saw the news as well. Really frightening. And so sad. We were on the “Arsenio Hall” TV show the next day. Lou and Arsenio decided we …

la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘The store basically got set on fire’

Posted April 24, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]
Adriana Rivera

KCRW listener Adriana Rivera says she was in the eighth grade when the riots broke out. Her local neighborhood store had been looting and she went down to check it out. She recalls the confusion, the mayhem and the fires.

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Listeners Remember: ‘I was a little black girl attending an all Korean school’

Posted April 23, 2012 by | 1 Comment | ]
Fouche and three friends at school

Entrepreneur and community gardener, Eve Fouché grew up in Los Angeles. She reflects on being one of three African-American girls in a Korean school when the LA Riots broke out.
“At the time I was a little black girl attending an all Korean school. It was also a cultural center, at the school they taught us about the Korean culture in its entirety. I learned …

la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘It felt like the entire city was trying to flee Los Angeles’

Posted April 23, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]

When the verdict was announced, I was in the lower-level cafeteria at USC. I remember the entire cafeteria going silent when the news was read on the four televisions that were there. I remember shaking my head and wondering how a verdict like that was even possible. I also remember thinking “this is not going to be good,” but returned to my Westside apartment …

economy, Issues, la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘I remember feeling safe’

Posted April 19, 2012 by | 1 Comment | ]

What do you remember most?
I remember how the news portrayed the riots as complete chaos, but for a young Black boy, there was a different reality. For the first time in my life, I remember feeling safe. During the riots, gangs were not fighting each other, so we didn’t have to fear drive by shootings. Thieves were looting stores, so we didn’t have to …

economy, la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘I had a naive faith that people would do the right thing’

Posted April 18, 2012 by | 12 Comments | ]

What do you remember most?

How frightened I was. I had a naive faith that people would do the right thing. It was a period in my life that dispelled my childhood beliefs. The awfulness of the initial act was bad enough, but the reaction of the public by taking others lives and properties to avenge this act only amplified all the things wrong in …

LA Noir, la riots »

Listeners Remember: ‘The fires and the smoke’

Posted April 17, 2012 by | 0 Comments | ]

What do you remember most?
The fires and the smoke. Watching the craziness on television, then going outside and smelling the smoke. For days and weeks afterwards you could still smell smoke. I watched on television as the mini-mall literally next to my friends house burned to the ground. I saw my friend and his roommates on the roof of their house with hoses trying …

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