Friday, November 22, 2013

Remembering JFK's Assassination: 50 Years Later

I was five years old when our president, John F. Kennedy, was assassinated. I had started morning half-day kindergarten a few months before. Mom had just cleaned up the kitchen after lunch and set up her ironing board in the living room so she could watch her soap operas while she ironed.

That's when Walter Cronkite broke into the regular programming and we learned our president had been shot and later that he had died. It is a memory that will always be seared in my mind. Unfortunately, not the last as there are a few other shocking tragedies -- some personal, some national -- for which I will always remember where I was and who I was with when I first heard the news.

My mother was absolutely stunned. I know she voted for Nixon and Dad voted for Kennedy; it's what they did until much, much later in life. But my brother was born on the same day as John F. Kennedy, Jr., in the same city, at hospitals that were not too far from each other -- Columbia Hospital for Women and Georgetown University Hospital. So for Mom there was a connection.

President Kennedy moments before he was shot. Photo courtesy of

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