Brenda Brooks Rogers graduated from Austin High School in 1966. At the time of the shooting, she was working at the UT-Austin Law Library before attending Huston-Tillotson University that fall. Austin was her hometown – a place that always felt safe.
On her way back from lunch on Aug. 1, Rogers saw an armored car parked just west of the law library and people crouched behind vehicles. She did not know what was going on until police at the door of the library told her to stay away from the windows.
Back at her job, the phones were ringing off the hook, but Rogers responded to each call with “no comment” – not just because that’s what she was told to do, but she also didn’t know any details to tell. Once she learned them, she had trouble sleeping that night.
“It was frightening to be that young and that much going on,” Rogers says. “I had just turned 18… That’s a lot for a young person to experience in their life so early.”