As the record label indicates, the audio was "reproduced from (a) tape recorded message just before death by suicide." The original recording concludes with the sound of the gunshot that ended Gardner's life, but the version that appears on this record is a bit more genteel; the sound of the gunshot was removed.
The 45, released on Atlanta's Broadcasting For Jesus record label, is entirely spoken word. Side One features the first part of Gardner's rambling farewell. Over on Side Two, we hear the conclusion of his message, followed by a short piece by NBC news reporter Bill Ryan. Ryan's report includes the information that Gardner's parents chose to have the recording played at their son's funeral in the hopes that some of his friends would be persuaded not to board the drug train.
Sorry about the extreme scratchiness of this record. No doubt the recording had lousy fidelity to begin with and this particular copy sounds as thought it must have been passed around and mishandled with great frequency before it wound up in my hands. In a fascinating side note, I learned that this very recording is available as a cassette tape from the National Child Safety Council, as part of their drug abuse prevention program. The colorful artwork nearby comes from the cassette's j-card.
Though he was not connected with this project in any way, I have a feeling Jack Webb would approve.