Fallsmead@50 Fun Facts
This Week In Fallsmead: Buddy McCracken
Posted on October 10, 2018 4:40 PM by Melani Miller Harig
Buddy McCracken, an 18-year old Wootton High School graduate who lived on Duncan Branch Court, was shot and killed at the end of Greenplace Terrace on October 11, 1974. Buddy was trying to stop a group of teenagers from tampering with a fire hydrant when one of the kids pulled out a gun and shot him. A memorial to Buddy was erected near the flagpole in Fallsmead Park and still stands there today. The scoreboard and baseball field at Wootton High School, where Buddy had played on the baseball team, were also named in his honor. 
Comment By: Jim Beller (Pt 1)
Posted on October 23, 2018 1:44 PM
Who Killed Buddy McCracken? Some residents of Fallsmead were surprised by the story of the death of Buddy McCracken and wanted to know more. Seven teenage friends were joy riding near Wootton High School on Friday, October 11, 1974. They had a sawed-off shotgun which the group intended to use to shoot out windows at Wootton High School.

Last Edited: 10/23/2018 at 01:45 PM
Comment By: Jim Beller (Pt 2)
Posted on October 23, 2018 1:47 PM
Unfortunately, they ended up on Greenplace Terrace and began tampering with a fire hydrant. Buddy McCracken who lived on Duncan Branch Court exchanged angry words with them and told them to get out of the neighborhood. He was shot at close range with the shotgun by Christopher Gus Duke in front of the house at 1852 Greenplace Terrace. The car was driven by Christopher’s brother George Gus Duke.

Last Edited: 10/23/2018 at 01:48 PM
Comment By: Jim Beller (Pt 3)
Posted on October 23, 2018 1:47 PM
Christopher Gus Duke, who was 16 at the time of the shooting, was initially charged with first degree murder and three handgun charges (in Maryland a sawed-off shotgun was considered a hand gun). He pleaded guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to 15 years in prison with 11 years suspended. The hand gun charges were dropped. He would have been eligible for parole after serving one year.

Last Edited: 10/23/2018 at 01:49 PM
Comment By: Jim Beller (Pt 4)
Posted on October 23, 2018 1:48 PM
I’m attempting to find out how much time, if any, he actually served in prison.

Last Edited: 10/23/2018 at 01:48 PM
Comment By: Doug Guidorizzi
Posted on October 23, 2018 1:51 PM
From a Frederick News story at the time (the entire text of the article was posted in the Fallsmead Neighborhood Facebook Group in a comment on October 20, 2018):

Last Edited: 10/23/2018 at 01:54 PM
We hope that you enjoyed reading these Fallsmead@50 Weekly Fun Facts about Fallsmead's history and important events in Fallsmead's past as much as we enjoyed writing them! Although they ended at the conclusion of our 50th anniversary year in 2018, you can continue to access them here. They are still open for comments, so please feel free to share your thoughts and memories!