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'Thomas Jefferson' collapses while reciting Declaration of Independence at La. Capitol

MARK BALLARD

THE ADVOCATE

MARK BALLARD/THE ADVOCATE
Paramedic Sarah Young treats Kenneth Krefft, who dressed as Thomas Jefferson, ever year recites the Declaration of Independence in Memorial Hall of the State Capitol. This year, which ended with Kefft asking legislators to approve legislation that would require public students to memorize a section of the document, the Shreveport resident's knees buckled.
MARK BALLARD/THE ADVOCATE Paramedic Sarah Young treats Kenneth Krefft, who dressed as Thomas Jefferson, ever year recites the Declaration of Independence in Memorial Hall of the State Capitol. This year, which ended with Kefft asking legislators to approve legislation that would require public students to memorize a section of the document, the Shreveport resident's knees buckled.

Kenneth Krefft, as Thomas Jefferson, collapsed Thursday morning after calling for the Louisiana House to pass legislation requiring public school students to memorize a portion of the founding document.

Krefft’s recitation of the Declaration of Independence in Memorial Hall is something of an annual ritual at the State Capitol.

Dressed in a colonial outfit and wig, Krefft, of Shreveport, said his legs gave way in what, by comparison to previous years, was a more impassioned performance.

The handful of watching GOP legislators at first thought the collapse was part of the drama, but Sarah Young, an emergency medical service paramedic who had thought so too, said she noticed how gray Krefft looked and began administering aid as he lay on the floor.

Republican Denham Springs Rep. Valarie Hodges offered her white jacket as a pillow while assistant sergeant-at-arms brought bottles of water.

To read more, visit The Advocate's website.

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