The indentation on his forehead, left behind when the front of his skull was rebuilt with fiberglass, is no longer camouflaged by side-swept bangs.
The bullet wound is obscured by a scar that arches from temple to temple, revealed now only because of a receding hairline.
Both are physical reminders of what happened to Tony Young 40 years ago. He has no recollection of being shot in the head while having a beer with friends.
But the memories are still fresh and painful for his family — the Tony they knew died that night — and for others who survived the Oregon Museum Tavern shooting.
"May 7, 1981, you just don't forget that date," said Darrel Miotke, who took a bullet in the arm while diving to the floor to protect a couple of women when a gunman opened fire in the popular Salem bar on Ladies Night.
Four people died. Twenty were wounded.
Some of the survivors, like Young, never fully recovered.
Others faced years of rehabilitation, like Miotke, who suffered both physical wounds and addiction problems exacerbated by the incident.
The Museum Tavern shooting happened long before mass shootings were commonplace and the term became part of our vernacular in America.
"I'm just saddened that society sees these as so routine," said Ted Stang, a hospital administrator who helped coordinate the Code 3 response that night four decades ago. It was the largest mass casualty response the city had ever seen before, or since.
Around the world, mass shootings have taken place at schools, places of worship, business establishments and outdoor concerts. Salem's was by no means among the largest, or most deadly.
In 2012, 20 first-graders and six educators were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School. In 2017, a shooting during a music festival on the Las Vegas strip took 60 lives.
"Some of them make this one look small-time," said Gary Young, Tony's father. "Except it happened here, in Salem, Oregon, and it was so rare at that time."
'It was just a nice place'
Regulars called it the Museum, although it wasn't that kind of gathering place. Objects of historical or cultural interest weren't exhibited there, unless you count an electric Star Wars game, pinball machines and coin-operated pool tables.
This was an old-fashioned tavern, the kind that sponsored city basketball and softball teams.
The business crowd went there for lunch. The young crowd went there at night for live music.
The Oregon Museum Tavern opened at 2395 Front St. NE in 1971. It had a kitchen, a game room and a small dance floor. There was wood paneling on the walls.
"As far as taverns go, it was a nice one," Gary Young said. "It was clean, they had dancing and live music, it was just a nice place."
He managed a trucking company kitty-corner from the Museum and used to eat lunch there. His drivers would go there after work for a beer. He never imagined it would be the place where his son's life — and his own — would be forever altered.
Tony Young was 22, and the tavern was a popular hangout for young men and women because it served cheap beer and wine and showcased what many called the best live rock 'n' roll in the Salem area.
He was a McNary High School graduate, and many of his classmates frequented there, too. So did young people from the Santiam Canyon. Miotke, then 26, was from Sublimity and graduated from Stayton High School.
Ladies Night was a big draw on Thursdays. Admission was free. Beer and wine were half-price.
The crowds dwindled after a woman went missing from the tavern on a Thursday night in February. She was found strangled to death a month later in a marshy area along the Willamette River.
By May, though, the women were starting to return, even though it would be more than three decades before the murder was solved.
The Museum was booming again.
90 seconds of horror
The marquee was lit up May 7, 1981, advertising the bands Sequel and Jenny and the Jeans.
Miotke remembers it being one of the first nights — maybe the first — that a Salem police officer hadn't been stationed outside the front door in response to what had happened just a few months prior.
A bartender referred to it as a slow night, although it was reported that more than 200 people were there. The Museum had a seating capacity of 222.
The dance floor was packed while opening act Jenny and the Jeans played cover songs by The Cars, Pat Benatar and Blondie, with some originals mixed in.
It was about 10:20 p.m. and the Lebanon-based band was in the middle of its final set, playing an original tune about broken love called "Turn Me Loose," when the crowd began to hear popping sounds.
Many thought it was just a string of firecrackers going off.
Some froze. A few laughed. The sound of music faded.
Then there was panic.
People began hitting the floor and ducking under tables and behind the cigarette machine.
A gunman was standing just a couple feet inside the doorway, firing a 9 mm Browning semi-automatic handgun.
He shot toward the bar first, which was about eight feet away. Two people were killed instantly. Then he shot to the left, toward the cigarette machine, killing another.
He emptied a 13-round clip, then stepped outside to reload. Some thought the nightmare was over.
But when he came back inside, he fired deeper into the tavern and emptied another 13-round clip.
The spray of bullets struck patrons in the head, chest, back, hips, arms and legs.
When the shooter paused, apparently to reload a second time, he was wrestled to the ground by at least five customers, according to witness accounts published in the Statesman Journal.
Tony Young, a two-time state placer for the McNary wrestling team, might have helped if he hadn't already taken one of the bullets to the head.
One customer, an off-duty firefighter, broke a long-neck Budweiser beer bottle over the shooter's head. Another hit him with a pool cue.
People were said to have reacted viciously after the shooter was subdued, kicking and hitting him. Others yelled "Kill that man" and "That's the bastard that did it."
4 killed, 20 injured, blood everywhere
Help arrived soon. A bartender had pressed the "robbery alarm" under the bar, summoning the police.
Investigators estimated the shooting rampage lasted no more than 90 seconds. Those who experienced the terror remember it lasting much longer.
As patrol cars and ambulances began arriving, a Statesman Journal reporter walked inside the bar and reported from a payphone. He described a scene with sprawled victims, bloody clothing, upturned furniture, broken glass and a floor slick with blood and spilled beer.
He heard frantic cries for stretchers and first-aid equipment. He saw friends cradle the heads and shoulders of gunshot victims waiting for medical attention. He watched teams of medics offer soothing words to those they treated.
One witness, later trying to adequately explain the horror of it all, said it was "like Vietnam."
Police recovered the handgun and two empty clips and took possession of a 1975 Toyota Celica in the parking lot.
They arrested the shooter, identified as Lawrence William Moore, a 25-year-old unemployed sawmill worker from Scio.
Two more magazines loaded with ammunition were found in his pockets, according to a police report in an old box of case documents from the Marion County archives. More ammo was found inside his car.
Larry Stephens was off duty when he was called to the scene. His wife, Debbie Stephens, also a detective, was working swing shift and already there.
"When I was notified, I wasn't told the magnitude," Larry Stephens said. "I was expecting one or two victims. When you walk into something like that, it stays with you forever, it really does."
He was put in charge of the investigation, calling in every detective on the force that night.
"We were going to need to talk to all of the victims and witnesses," Stephens said. "We would need as much resource as we could get."
Moore, known as Larry to family and friends, was known to frequent the tavern on Ladies Night. He never seemed to mix with the women, though. He never seemed to dance.
Miotke knew him from high school. They weren't friends per se, but they had some of the same classes at Stayton.
His classmate was responsible for the worst mass shooting in Salem history and one of four in Oregon logged in the database of The Violence Project, a national nonprofit research center that tracks mass shootings.
'The most complex disaster'
The wounded were transported by ambulance to Salem Hospital Memorial Unit less than two miles away. Paramedics from surrounding communities, including Monmouth, Stayton and Woodburn, were called in to help handle the volume of victims.
Ted Stang had just made it home after the monthly hospital board meeting and taken off his jacket and tie when he received a call at about 10:30 p.m. from the nurse supervisor. A Code 3 had been activated, triggering the hospital's full emergency response.
An estimated 80 hospital employees were brought in, including every available surgeon, anesthesiologist and operating room nurse.
Stang was the hospital's vice president for professional services and the architect of the hospital's disaster plan. He served eight years in the Air Force and had experience in triage and disaster planning.
The hospital on Winter Street SE had only one building at the time. The bay to the emergency center, which is what the ER was called back then, was at the rear.
Victims were screened as they came in to determine the severity of their gunshot wounds. The most critical were tended to first. Some were rushed to the third floor for surgery.
"I can remember the surgeons telling me how slippery the floor was in the surgery center," Stang said. "There was a lot of blood."
The hospital's blood bank put out a call to Red Cross, and Oregon State Police patrol cars relayed cartons of blood from Portland to Wilsonville to Salem.
Downstairs, the emergency center lobby was overflowing. The reception desk was jammed with people inquiring about the whereabouts and condition of their loved ones.
Gary and Dolores Young learned their son had been shot in the head but was alive. If he survived, they realized, he might never be the same.
For some, hope turned into grief. Hospital counselors called in for the disaster consoled them.
Stang was quoted in the Statesman as calling it "the most complex disaster we've handled." And he believes that may still be true.
The hospital treated 20 shooting victims that night, and only one died. The other three died inside the tavern. One injured victim didn't go to the hospital but was treated elsewhere.
"Ironically, we had just exercised our disaster plan about two weeks before this event," Stang said. "We were well prepared."
He left the hospital at about 5 a.m. the next morning, proud of the response and thankful the emergency drill that included ambulance, fire and police personnel was fresh on everybody's minds.
"People can forget the contents of your disaster plan," he said. "You tend to stick it in the drawer and forget about it. But when you practice it two weeks prior, that really prepared us for something you pray never occurs."
Salem becomes a household word
Social media didn't exist. Cell phones weighed up to 80 pounds and were not handheld or portable.
But news still traveled fast.
America woke up the next morning to details of the shooting. Salem quickly became a household word.
Good Morning America and the Today Show featured the story prominently. The Chicago Tribune carried a front-page picture in its Friday afternoon edition. Other big-city publications ran stories and clamored for more information from the police department and district attorney's office.
Robert Sappingfield was a lieutenant and public information officer with Salem Police Department. It was his job to handle the onslaught of media attention.
The magnitude and location, he said, made this different than other Salem murder cases.
"They made the news, but not like this," Sappingfield said. "This was a public gathering. That's what generated all of the interest."
Moore appeared in Marion County District Court the day after the shooting and was charged with four counts of murder. His mug shot was published on the front page of the Statesman Journal. Sketches of him from a three-minute arraignment appeared on Page 2.
He was described as 5-foot-10 and 160 pounds with sandy-colored hair down to his collar, but barely covering a bald spot on his head, and a long, full beard and mustache. He wore green jail coveralls and slippers and was flanked by sheriff's deputies.
The charges would be upgraded to aggravated murder a month later. More charges — 20 counts of attempted murder — were later filed.
Moore pleaded innocent by reason of mental defect.
'No excuse for murder'
The shooting rattled the core of the community, from the state Capitol to the corner coffee shop.
Salem still had a small-town feel, with a population of less than 100,000 in 1981. This was something that only happened someplace else.
The ripple effect was so wide that Moore's court-appointed attorney requested a change of venue.
The defense attorney came to the June 20 hearing wielding a stack of more than 20 Statesman Journal newspapers, claiming the extensive publicity made it impossible to conduct a fair trial in Marion or Polk counties.
He said the public mood was reflected on a sign on State Street that read: "Insanity plea is no excuse for murder."
Moore's attorney also requested the attempted murder charges be tried in a separate trial.
The judge ruled for the defense. The trial was moved to Lane County.
"You don't see cases moved a lot,” said Dale Penn, then deputy district attorney for Marion County. "But too many people were impacted by this shooting. Literally, you could talk to anybody, and they pretty much knew somebody impacted."
The DA's office was under some pressure within the justice system to not fight the insanity defense, but didn't cave.
"The issue here wasn't who did it or what happened — everybody knew what happened and who did it," Penn said. "I could have called about 200 witnesses to identify him as the shooter.
"The issue here was very focused. Did the mental illness make the defendant no longer able to understand the difference between right or wrong, or did mental illness make the defendant no longer able to control his actions?"
The DA's office wanted a jury to decide.
The trial begins
The trial started five months and a week after the shooting.
"Back then, if you had a strong judge and they said you're going to trial, you needed to be ready," Penn said. "Now, over the years, it pretty much has evolved to where you can't even talk to somebody about trying somebody for murder for a year."
Six men and six women were selected for the jury.
Penn conceded during the trial that the defendant had a mental defect, as it was called at the time under state law. Moore was described as paranoid schizophrenic with delusional thoughts.
But Penn told the jury there was more to it than that.
To accept insanity, jurors had to believe the mental defect caused the criminal act. They also had to feel he could not be held responsible for the criminal conduct because of the mental defect.
Nineteen people testified for the prosecution, including three police officers, none of whom are still on the Salem police force. Detectives Debbie and Larry Stephens both took the stand. The other witnesses were all tavern patrons or employees.
Dennis Scharf's testimony was compelling. He testified not from the witness stand but his wheelchair. Scharf had been shot in the back of his neck through the spinal cord, which left him a quadriplegic.
But perhaps the most powerful testimony for the prosecution was yet to come.
Shooter testifies on his behalf
Moore took the stand on the fourth day of the trial, claiming he acted in self-defense.
Millionaires, Jews, bankers, prostitutes and bartenders were after his money, he said. They had been poisoning him. He testified that he felt the shooting was his last chance to defend himself. The tavern was full of those conspiring against him.
"No place to run, no place to hide; I couldn't get away from them, I was going to die anyway," Moore said.
His testimony was along the same lines as what he told a police officer shortly after he was arrested.
"What happened? Robbery gone sour?" the officer asked.
"It was the syndicate, all the Jews, all the bartenders. They have been feeding me poison … the convulsions and all, I just got sick of it," Moore said, describing the poison as toxic gases.
The officer asked if Moore had gone to the tavern to "get them."
"I might as well have," Moore said. "I would have ended up here anyway or an insane asylum."
Moore's older sister, a registered nurse, and his father both testified that his mental state since the summer of 1980 had reminded them of Moore's mother, who was institutionalized several times because of mental illness before she died of cancer.
Four psychiatrists testified that Moore suffered from paranoid schizophrenia and had a valid defense. Penn focused on evidence about Moore's mental state at the time of the crime.
A conscious choice to spare a life
Miotke was the last witness for the prosecution. His testimony was referred to as a "juicy tidbit" in newspaper coverage. But it turned out to be more impactful than that.
He testified that when Moore entered the tavern, he fired down a line of people next to Miotke. When he pointed the gun at Miotke's head, he made direct eye contact, turned away, then kept shooting.
Moore knew Miotke. The two had gone to high school together.
Miotke, whose arm was in a sling from a stray bullet he took while trying to protect a couple of women who froze during the shooting, wasn't on the stand long. The damage to the defense was done quickly.
Penn's closing arguments reiterated the importance of Miotke's account: If Moore made a conscious choice to spare Miotke, he made a conscious choice to kill the others.
"This was very important to the jury," Penn recalled. "Jurors interviewed afterward brought up this point."
The trial lasted seven days. The jury deliberated 9½ hours.
The verdict: Guilty on all four counts of aggravated murder.
Moore was sentenced Dec. 15, 1981, to four consecutive life prison terms and a minimum of 80 years without parole.
After the sentencing hearing, Penn said the judge gave an appropriate sentence and the additional 20 charges of attempted murder would be dismissed.
It provided closure for the victims and their families, especially for the loved ones of those who died:
- Lori J. Cunningham worked as a paralegal for a local law firm. She was 22.
- John W. Cooper was one of the partners in his family’s tool grinding business and a 1971 McNary graduate. He was 27.
- Allen L. Wilcox worked at a local auto parts store and was a 1974 McNary graduate. He was 24.
- R. Eric Hamblin was a self-employed auto body painter and graduated from Silverton High School in 1975. He was 24.
40 years later, lives changed forever
For those who survived, there have been hardships and heartaches.
Tony Young can reminisce about his high school wrestling career, but his life for the past 40 years has been a blur.
He spent three months in the hospital, turning 23 in the ICU. The bullet caused his brain severe damage, resulting in years of rehabilitation and a lifetime of care.
"He was entirely different, his personality, everything," his dad, Gary Young, said.
Tony lost social and conversational skills. He suffered severe hearing loss and has worn hearing aids ever since. He has no short-term memory.
He's capable of doing everyday tasks but can't live alone. He has two sisters who've helped with his care, and he's lived most of the time with his parents.
Since his mom died in 2017, though, it's been just Tony and his 85-year-old father in their Keizer condominium.
"I tell my two daughters I've got Tony, but I live alone," Gary Young said.
Tony turns 63 on May 29.
Darrel Miotke has a Y-shaped vertical scar on his biceps. Two scars on his forearm are where nerves from his leg and ankle were inserted.
He had multiple surgeries to regain use of his arm and wore a sling for a year and eight months.
Miotke admittedly drank too much before the shooting, then it got worse. First, it was just alcohol, and then he turned to drugs. He had some trouble with the law and was facing jail time before he finally sought help.
"That's what this shooting did — it got me to get to my bottom real quick," Miotke said during a recent visit to the scene of the crime. "My wife and daughters believe it was the best thing to happen to me because it got me to where I am today."
He's been clean and sober for 37 years.
Now only a parking lot sits on the corner of Front and Hickory streets NE where the Oregon Museum Tavern once stood. No one driving by would ever know it was the site of a mass shooting.
There's no memorial, not even a plaque.
The tavern never recovered. Less than a year later, the name was changed to High Noon Saloon, which didn't sit well with the community. New owners in 1983 renamed it the Night Owl Restaurant.
The building later went vacant and attempts to turn it into a shelter for homeless men failed.
It was demolished on April 7, 1988.
By then, Miotke was working for Hillcrest Youth Correctional Facility, where he did assessments and worked in the anger management unit. He's 66 and retired now, and he lives with his wife, Judy, in Turner.
Ted Stang, the hospital administrator who helped coordinate the mass casualty response, worked for the hospital for 33 years, including the last 15 as executive director of its foundation. He retired in 2001.
He's 83 now and lives with his wife, Mimi, in West Salem.
Dale Penn went on to serve as the Marion County District Attorney for nearly 20 years. He was appointed in 2004 by then-Gov. Ted Kulongoski to oversee the Oregon Lottery, where he worked until his appointment to the Marion County Circuit Court in 2010.
He retired as a judge in 2017.
Penn recently bought a riverside home in southern Oregon, where he loves to fish. He's now 71 and said if the shooting happened today, "You'd prosecute it exactly the same way."
Moore, now 65, remains at Oregon State Penitentiary, the maximum-security prison where he's been serving his sentence since the beginning.
He did not respond to a letter mailed more than a month ago to him at the prison asking if he would be willing to talk by phone or answer questions via email for this story. A search of Statesman Journal archives revealed no time during his incarceration that he has spoken to the local media.
On the fifth anniversary of the shooting, he declined a request to be interviewed. His family members also declined. A prison spokesman described him at the time this way: "He is reclusive, he is a loner, he interacts very little with people."
The soonest Moore could be up for parole would be 2061. He would be 105.
Capi Lynn is the Statesman Journal’s news columnist. She spent hours scouring the newspaper's archives to learn what happened at the Oregon Museum Tavern 40 years ago, then followed up with multiple interviews with people who were impacted by the shooting. Contact her at clynn@StatesmanJournal.com or 503-399-6710, or follow her on Twitter @CapiLynn and Facebook @CapiLynnSJ.