This eBook relates memories of people about their personal experiences on the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. A longer paperback version is being compiled and will be available soon. News commentators were prophetic when they said that people all over the world would remember what they were doing on the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas on Friday, November 22, 1963. The eBook and the larger paperback version are published by William R. Parks - wrparks dot com. Here are two sample articles:
Kathleen Powers, Retired Secretary, SUNY Maritimes College: I was living in an apartment at 196th Street in Washington Heights, NY (borough of Manhattan) near Fort Tryon Park with my husband and two small children. Michael was a year-and-a- half, and Kathy was ten months old, better known as Irish twins. I often enjoyed taking them outdoors for a ride in the baby carriage.
After getting them dressed on this particular day in November 1963, I trudged down four flights of stairs to the sidewalk carrying one and taking the other by the hand. I was young and energetic and enjoyed getting them out for a walk through the neighborhood and talking with those we met along the way. Usually, there wasn’t much to chat about except the weather and how we were all doing.
But on this particular day, we overheard a lot of excitement in the voices of a crowd of pedestrians gathered at the corner. Others had gathered around and stopped to listen and inquire, and I, of course, did the same. I was shocked to learn that our president had been shot in Dallas, Texas. Everyone on the corner was stunned and frantic, but details were yet unknown.
So I turned around and headed back to the apartment. After climbing four flights of stairs with two small children, I turned on the TV and soon learned that the gunshot wounds were fatal and had taken the life of our president. I felt sick when I heard all the details and watched replays of the actual shooting. Most vivid in my mind, I can still see the president slumped over in the arms of Jacqueline, wife and first lady. I’ll never forget little John-John raising his right hand and saluting the casket while standing on the steps of St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Washington, DC.
Jim Taylor, Home Inspector, Binghamton, NY: I was an 8th grade student at Saint Paul’s Catholic School in Binghamton, NY on November 22, 1963. Saint Paul’s was K-8th grade, so I was a senior, so to speak. Our school was back-to-back with a Binghamton public grade school, Thomas Edison.
We did not have TVs or radios at our school and had no idea what news was shaking the earth as we knew it. It so happened that I was tasked with carrying a note of some sort across the parking lot and through the chain link gate to the Thomas Edison office. I never learned what was in that note.
The news had reached Thomas Edison, and I carried the sadness on my shoulders back to my teacher at Saint Paul’s. Once the good Sisters of Saint Joseph of Carondelet gathered radios from the convent and the news was absorbed to whatever degree possible, classes were dismissed, and we students were sent home.
The walk home was short, but it seemed to take forever. The rest of the day we were consumed by unending newsreels and the voice of Walter Cronkite. We lived upstairs from my cherished grandfather. I sat with him watching the tragedy unfold over and over.
Sadly for me, and I assume for most of America, this was a coarse introduction to the world of modern communications.
As a 13 year old, news hadn’t mattered much before. Now there was this nightmare to deal with. The tears I shed at 13 were destined to erupt twice again with the shock of the assassinations in 1968 of Martin Luther King, Jr. and JFK’s younger brother, Robert F. Kennedy.