November 22, 2008

Forty-Five Years Ago.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 1:03 pm

I can hardly believe that President Kennedy was assassinated forty-five years ago on this date. Now, his wife is gone, as is his brother and his son, the little guy who saluted the passing caisson bearing his dad’s body.

I can remember it all as if it happened yesterday. I expect that I always will.

I wrote about it here.


  1. Yeah, he was at the base near Tampa just a couple of days before…I saw him from a distance then and later at a parade in Tampa…

    Comment by GUYK — November 22, 2008 @ 3:54 pm

  2. I was in the second grade. They rolled a TV into our classroom so that we could watch and then we were dismissed from school. That entire weekend was spent in front of the TV watching the events unfold. And just like you I remember as if it were yesterday.

    Comment by LeeAnn — November 23, 2008 @ 1:23 am

  3. I was in 4th grade, and remember the reactions of all the teachers at school when they heard about it — as well as the days (and even weeks) that followed. The last time I was in D.C., I went to Arlington and made a point of visiting the Tomb of the Unknown and Kennedy’s grave.

    Comment by DMerriman — November 23, 2008 @ 2:56 am

  4. I was in sixth grade, old enough to appreciate and absorb the enormity of the situation. We were dismissed early from school and, I remember, when I was walking home, I was wondering who was going to protect us from the Russians. My father came home from work that night, sat down in front of the TV and I remember him saying that when all was said and done, they would find out the Government did it, not Lee Harvey Oswald. At the time I didn’t get it, but he was probably right.
    On a sadder note, the worst of the three brothers is still alive and kicking. How’s that for irony?

    Comment by gregor — November 23, 2008 @ 8:20 am

  5. I also have very clear memories of that day…

    Comment by Elisson — November 23, 2008 @ 11:29 am

  6. Remember it very well.

    I had just gotten out of the Army 2 months before and was on my way home from a class to the IBM Ed Center in DC. I was working at the Pentagon as a civilian then in a DP internship program.

    I was driving up the hill on Glebe Road when the first announcement came that there had been a shooting at the Motorcade in Dallas. My wife was working at the Army Officers Insurance Corp on North Post of Fort Myer so I went there to tell her about it. We turned on the radio and they announced that the President had been hit and taken to the hospital. A couple of minutes later came the news that he was dead.

    I was not a big fan of Kennedy and am still not but the shock hit all of us, friend and foe alike. It was like a huge silence in DC and you saw people flocking to the center just to be with others. Nobody wanted to be alone. Nobody knew who was behind the shooting and if it was an attack on the country or not. All the military was put on alert and I was contacted to be ready if needed. I had been the one who prepared all the Eyes Only messages for the Dept of the Army as a sergeant and they wanted me to be there if necessary. I didn’t get called but I had to be ready just in case.

    The whole atmosphere was just spooky. Nobody knew what was going on or what would happen. It was just like the whole city was holding its breath to see how it would all go down.

    The one thing that I really remember was the way the First Family, Jackie, Caroline and John Jr, were sterling examples of how to deal with it. She was a tower of strength to the whole nation at that time. I am not sure LBJ could have handled it if she had not been so strong. A totally amazing woman who taught us all how to handle the unknowable and unbelievable. She showed us that she was far more than a clothes horse and a demure aristocrat and she was exactly what we all needed at the time.

    The other point is the one that Gregor made about the three brothers. Truly ironic.

    Comment by dick — November 23, 2008 @ 12:43 pm

  7. geez, I’ve been thinking about this all morning while I’m installing the new baseboards in the living room. I remember the old woman who lived next door to us, who was a Polish Catholic, built a shrine to him in sun porch on the front of the house. She had this creepy painting of JFK that had those “Jesus painting with the eyes that follow you everywhere” eyes and whoever painted it really had a bad grasp on anatomy, his forehead was about twice a tall as it should have been and it gave me the creeps because it reminded me of Exeter in “This Island Earth”. Every time I went over her house there were candles lit on the table under the painting which made it eerier yet. Brrrrr…. gives me the willies…

    Comment by gregor — November 23, 2008 @ 1:39 pm

  8. I was in kindergarten. I remember that nobody was around when we got off the schoolbus, so my friend Ann and I went into my house first (no doors were ever locked in the neighborhood). Nobody was there, so we went to her house, where all the mothers of the neighborhood were gathered in front of the TV. They were crying and all the older kids looked serious and scared. That night, we went to church for a special prayer service.

    Comment by Mary — November 23, 2008 @ 2:54 pm

  9. I wasn’t born yet for another 12 years, but I hope to never ever know the horror of a presidential assassination on American or any other soil. For me, it is unimaginable…I don’t know how Americans who are old enough to remember it found the strength to look to the future. If it was anything like what 9/11 was for me, something I still think about every single day, then, that is pretty bad. Kennedy was practically a god to my family; they spoke about him almost as though he was their own family.

    Comment by Erica — November 24, 2008 @ 9:05 pm

  10. I was at work when one of the secretaries came running out of the office that the President`s motorcade was shot at. We all managed to find a radio to listen to & follow the event`s up to when they announced Kennedy had died. Needless to say none of us really earned our wages that day.

    What I remember the most is reading of Jeanne Dixon a prominent Psychic & newspaper columnist of the time who had predicted much earlier Kennedy would be assassinated but not neccessarily in his first term. As event`s turned out she had just prior to Kennedy`s Dallas trip experienced a vision Kennedy should not go to Dallas & had tried to warn those responsible for his safety but was ignored.

    Kennedy was not a President who really accomplished a great deal, in fact most of what he has been credited with in the civil right`s arena occured on Johnson`s watch, but became law probably in memory of Jack Kennedy. Still he was our president & all American`s regardless of party or political belief were robbed on that day. I sincerely hope to never repeat that experience again.

    Comment by dudley1 — November 25, 2008 @ 8:05 pm

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