Assassination Attempt - March 30, 1981
While departing the Washington Hilton Hotel on March 30, 1981 - a mere 69 days into his first term - President Reagan was shot by John Hinckley Jr. and suffered a punctured lung. Hinkley, who was found guilty by reason of insanity, was apparently motivated to shoot the president by a desire to impress actress Jodie Foster, who he'd apparently grown obsessed with after he saw the film "Taxi Driver."
After the shooting, which injured White House Press Secretary James Brady, Washington D.C. police officer Thomas Delahanty and Secret Service agent Timothy McCarthy, Reagan was taken to George Washington University Hospital, where he underwent surgery. He stayed at hospital for over a week to recover. The president's approval ratings peaked at 73 percent after the shooting.
Reagan was the first sitting president to survive after being shot in an assassination attempt.