In some ways it doesn’t seem like 50 years since President John F. Kennedy was murdered in Dallas.
I was a senior in high school, home early that day because of a need to have stitches removed.
I was listening to the radio when a news flash came across the air saying shots had been fired at President Kennedy’s motorcade. Shortly thereafter we heard he was shot and about an hour later, we heard President Kennedy was dead.
It seemed unreal. This was 1963, we didn’t shoot presidents anymore. That was something we read about in history books.
Two days later, we watched on live television as Kennedy’s alleged assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, was murdered at Dallas police headquarters.
What was happening in America?
Was this really the country that was called the leader of the free world and the model for all democratic nations? (A question that remains very timely today)
Those questions were asked by many who were virtually glued to their televisions through Kennedy’s funeral on Monday November 25th.
To many around the world, America seemed stuck in the wild west. It still does for that matter.
Kennedy was a president who was admired and respected throughout much of the world. He inspired optimism, hope and confidence, something we haven’t seen since, in my opinion.
America lost its remaining innocence on November 22, 1963. It’s optimism and hope have been reduced in the intervening 53 years.