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Speier Recalls Jonestown Massacre, 37 Years Later

By JM Rieger and Rebecca Gale

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Rep. Jackie Speier knows exactly how it feels to be left for dead. On Nov. 18, 1978, she was shot five times on a remote airstrip in Guyana, South America. Her boss, Rep. Leo J. Ryan and four others lay dead nearby, killed by gunfire as they tried to escape Jonestown, the commune built by cult leader Jim Jones. Nearly 40 years later, Speier still remembers why she decided to get on a plane to go down on the ill-fated congressional trip.

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