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waysider

45 years ago

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I was in school.. first grade. I didn't entirely understood the ramifications of that happened..

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8th grade science class, Bryant Intermediate School, Fairfax County VA, drawing angles of reflection on a paper upon which was situated a mirror and several pins.

Two days later I was standing in the streets of Washington, watching the funeral procession. I rememebr to this day the repetitive drumbeat.

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I was in Mr. Blake's 8th grade Earth Science class when the principal's voice came over the P.A.

School was dismissed immediately. A group of us walked home together in almost total silence for the entire mile and a half trek. There wasn't much merriment at Thanksgiving that year.

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In Texas. Four years old and still I remember being told to be quiet!

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I remember that drumbeat Lifted mentioned -and sometime still hear it in my dreams.

I was home sick from school that day with a cold and fever. I had just had some soup. My Ma was vacuuming and I was sitting in the big brown chair, As The World Turns was on the black and white TV with the rabbit ears when it was interrupted with a "special bulletin". The info was sketchy at first -it might have been Frank McGee who initially announced it but I cant be sure. I do know I saw Walter Cronkite cry that day when he gave the official announcement that the President had died

I didnt know all the implications at the time but life changed on a dime, for 3 or 4 days .the family was glued to the TV.

I saw Oswald shot live, the Lying in State, The Funeral procession with the riderless horse and the beat of those drums, and the lighting of the eternal flame.

I was 8

Edited by mstar1

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I was 17, a freshman in college. I went to classes at night, so I was at work that day, as a cashier at a Kroger's supermarket. I have a vivid picture in my mind of the looks of shock that came over my coworkers' faces one by one as the news spread down the line of cashiers, almost like a visible ripple om a pond.

That night I headed for my classes as usual--seeking some sense of normalcy, I guess. The professor of my first class, Dr. Shedd, had tears in his eyes as he told us classes were cancelled.

I remember that drumbeat, too, and the riderless horse with the boots turned backwards in the stirrups. I remember sobbing when little John-John saluted. Now little John-John is gone, too. So sad.

Remember those coffee table photo books of JFK and family that the newspapers published right after he died? I must have looked through those things a gazillion times.

I wonder how the rest of his presidency would have gone, and if he would have been as popular when it was over as he was before that awful day.

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I wonder how the rest of his presidency would have gone, and if he would have been as popular when it was over as he was before that awful day.

I wonder that too... especially wondering what our involvement in Vietnam would have been had he lived.

I was in 4th grade at Sacred Heart (Catholic) School in Rochester, NY. It was a sunny day but we were old enough to feel the shock and sadness.

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For me--it was . . . before I can remember :) but, it is so telling that you all can pinpoint that moment in time.

Amazing decade--what an historic time--which must have helped form your understanding. . . I do believe although turbulent. . . it's significance helped produce some wonderful people. . .which is evident when I read many of your posts.

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Everday as I walked home from school ( 2nd grade at Walnut Street Elementary) two ladies sat in rocking chairs on their front porch. As I passed by they would say hello to me and ask me how I was doing. They were always so jovial. Now that I think about it they kind of remind me of the two sisters on The Waltons.

Then one day they weren't in the rocking chairs but standing on the porch hugging and crying. I remember asking them what was the matter. They told me the president had been shot.

We were out of school for several days. I, too, remember having to be quiet those days. I remember this so vividly because my parents were not JFK supporters. Yet, they mourned simply because our President had been killed. The mood around our house was pure reverence. Funny, those little things from childhood parents teach by example that stick with you.

.....I forgot to add.....thanks so much Waysider for reminding us.

There may come a day when there will be no one to answer.....do you remember where you were when you heard the news of JFK's death?

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It was 5 days before my 16th birhday. Our high school band was to play some catchy tunes ("March Ponderoso", "Hey, Look Me Over" and "Dixie") at the Blackstone Hotel in Ft. Worth that morning for the president's enjoyment, but it was cancelled for whatever reason and Eastern Hills High School did the honors, as I recall.

So some buddies and I ditched school to go to Dallas and see the president in his motorcade. I was about a block off Dealy Plaza.

I remember that day in great detail and I never ditched school again after that.

EDITED to say it WASN'T "March Ponderoso", but "March Grandioso"...maybe I don't remember it in such detail.

Another high school played "Hail to the Chief"...Polytechnic HS, I believe. They cancelled us because they decided three HS bands would run too long. I remember, now.

Edited by Ron G.

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I was in school, in the 6th grade, when the announcement came over the P.A. I don't think the gravity of the situation really struck me like it should have. Took awhile...

I still think that picture of John-John saluting his father's coffin is the sadest photo I've ever seen

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I am affected today knowing that George is younger than me and that it was before Geisha can remember...

I was in 7th grade at St. Linus (2nd Pope, doncha know) Grammar School.

I was passisng out the "spellers," when the obligatory tapping, blowing, and static preceded the announcement made on the "overhead p.a."

I dropped the spellers, but knew I wouldn't get in trouble for it.

We were assembled in church...remember Evie O'Connell saying "he'll pull thru, I just know it <remember me thinking it was too late already and very sad>...once in church, we said the rosary....THEN I knew it was really serious...Evie slumped onto the kneeler (still don't know if it was cuz we were into it for the duration of the rosary, or the event at hand)

School was recessed for all the funeral tendings...I watched it all on b&w TV, and I definitely remember being totally cognizant that it was history making history...

It was the daze that the words "rotundra," "entourage," and "grassy knoll" entered my vocabulary and the melody of Hail to the Chief haunted me for a long time.

I remember Jackie as stoic, Caroline as obedient, and John-John as darling in the direst of circumstances.

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I was at Valley Forge General Hospital in the doctor's office when I heard . A nurse or someone poked her head in and told the doctor. I remember walking to my Father's office, he was the protestant chaplain there, and as I walked in watching a Sargeant walk out of his office crying. I think that was what affected me most was watching a rough tumble sargeant crying.

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November 22 is Mr. Garden's birthday. He didn't really catch on to what was happening except his birthday party got canceled.

I was in a physics class (which I later failed) when the guy from the school radio station dashed in to announce three shots had been fired at President Kennedy's motorcade and it was believed he had been fatally wounded. The guy teaching the class, said, "Oh yeah?" and went on writing some meaningless formula in spite of the fact his class was abuzz.

A very sad occasion. I sometimes feel it was the end of the golden years of feeling safe and right and good.

WG

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I don't remember it personally as I was 27 days old. I'm sure I was sucking bottles, sleeping, and pooping my diaper.

Even so, it has an effect on me even now as it was a tragic time in American history.

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I was 8 years old,had a fever that day,heartrending moment,first person I remember praying for.

My family is catholic,so JFK was like a hero.

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I dropped the spellers, but knew I wouldn't get in trouble for it.

My thinking when I was painstakingly drawing those reflection angle lines with the neat little arrows. After the announcement which took place in the middle of that procedure, I hrridly scratched the rest of them in about 30 seconds what should have taken 3 or 4 minutes, and didn't worry about getting any bad marks for it.

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I had my one and only tour of the White House earlier that month, although in later years I sang at the Pageant of Peace a couple times on the White House Lawn as part of my HS choir...and i certainly passed by enough times.

JFK was the first President I saw live. It was only briefly as he passed by near where I lived. This was not long before we moved to the DC area. It was in Columbus, OH; he came to campaign for Governor Michael DiSalle in the fall of 1962. It was the only campaign I ever actually worked in. DiSalle lost his bid for re-election to James Rhodes.

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I was in 1st grade (5ys. old, almost 6) at St. Christopher's Catholic School in Metairie, LA. I remember the principal came over the intercom and told us the President had been shot and told us to pray. Then a short time later she came back on and said he was dead.

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Here's a memory from overseas.

I was on a street corner in the next village. The Brownies were having a "clean-up" and and we were going round the neighbourhood picking up rubbish and putting into sacks (no fears about "needle stick" in those days!). Think there must have been a radio on in a shop on the street corner where we were all meeting. Heard the news and adults tending our little group must have been discussing. It didn't mean much to me but I knew it was something important.

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I was 3 going on 4 and it was late morning or early afternoon can't remember which but my Mom turned on teh TV and said "here sit down there is going to be a parade soon.. you can watch that for a little bit till your brother comes home". I sat for a bit and then there was the news and I turned it off and told my Mom there isn't going to be a parade somebody died and she did't believe me and turned the TV on to see that the President had been shot. I remember everyone being distraught and my big brother coming home early from school. it was a very sad day but I had no clue.

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