Friday, November 22, 1963


I figured to post this here because it seems to be all over the news. I’d rather not make this thread political or personal and just have it be as a tribute and perhaps hear some stories from those who were alive as to what they were doing when they heard of the news.

I wasn’t even close to being in existence at the time but my father, who lived in Colombia at the time, told me that he was in a movie theater watching a movie when someone came in and stopped it and announced what had happened. Everyone was stunned because for them that just couldn’t happen to an American president. They also loved him down in Colombia and even have sections of Bogota named after him. He traveled there at one point during his presidency.




Don’t like to speak badly of the dead, but Mark Steyn puts it in perspective

Two presidents died that November, but the mawkish parochialiasm of the Camelot cult has obliterated the fact that the second bore responsibility for the death of the first. No “eternal flame” for Diem, just an unmarked grave. He’s the Mary Jo Kopechne of the autumn of 1963, unhelpful to the myth: “What goes around comes around” doesn’t have quite the same ring as “one brief shining moment.”

I am not enamored of the Kennedy myth. But it is just me and I still I hope both Diem and Kennedy both rest in peace; as well as all the boys that ended up dying because of his hubris.



On the other hand, Diem wasn’t exactly a model President. Also, IIRC Kennedy had intended to engineer the coup so that Diem would be exiled, but the Vietnamese military simply shot him and his brother.

Interesting tidbit: The reason people immediately suspected that Diem was killed, instead of the new regime’s story that he committed suicide in a churchyard? Suicides would render a Catholic church, at least temporarily, unusable to celebrate the Mass. The priest who had watched the military throw the bodies into the churchyard and leave celebrated Mass. Therefore it wasn’t suicide.



Author C. S. Lewis died November 22, 1963. But I’ve never heard that before. ( I believe it was on The World Over with Raymond Arroyo this week). Appears that news was eclipsed by the death of Kennedy.



Yea, kinda understandable. Whether you like the Kennedys or not, agree with their politics or not, no one should be killed like that in such a traumatizing mannor in front of the world. I was 2.5 at the time so I can’t exactly say I remember it. My husband who was 4 does remember watching the funeral on TV. I am not a big fan of that family at all but this shouldn’t have happen at all.



CBS News is running online archive footage of the assassination and all that followed



I was 4 months shy of two years old when Kennedy was shot, and I do not remember the actual event, but I have seen the film footage and photographs so often now it is burned in my memory. Prayers today for the repose of his soul and for our nation.



I wasn’t yet born at the time of the assassination, but like many others, I’ve seen the films and photographs many times, and read (part of) the multi-volume Warren Commission report for hours in my high school library.

I can’t even begin to imagine how horrible it was for Mrs. Kennedy to see her husband killed right next to her, and holding his brains in her hands on the way to the hospital, and shepherding her young children through the ordeal of the days that followed with the eyes of the world staring at them.

My parents wrote a condolence letter to Mrs. Kennedy, and her thank-you note to them, on black-bordered stationery, is a family heirloom of ours.

Eternal rest grant unto both of them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. Amen.



I watched as the event unfolded on TV. Sad that mythology and media words have covered the truth all these years. White and Black cried together. The nation mourned. This President who had done so much to avoid nuclear war and foster peace in the world should be left to rest in peace, but, to this day, the lies and rumors persist. The documents bear out the truth.

National Security Action Memorandum #263.

The Kennedy administration had a plane waiting to take Ngo Dinh Diem and his brother to Europe. They never left and President Kennedy had nothing to do with it.

Mrs. Kennedy, though obviously in shock, had her children and the rest of the family with her through the aftermath. As the President’s coffin passed them, I watched John John salute his father. As young as I was, I understood.

May God rest his soul and those of his family who are still with us.




But I guess, even on the 50th anniversary of his death, you just couldn’t contain yourself. :rolleyes:



I think Jackie did do a very good job of raising the two children and tried to give both of them as much a normalized childhood as possible considering the trauma and fame that surrounded them. I thought today i would have seen Carolyn but maybe the wounds are still too painful to think about. I do know that the day of funeral for their father, Jackie went back to the White House and hosted a previously planned birthday party for John Jr. It’s hard to imagine going from the grief of a funeral to a birthday party but I think it was still held to help move forward for the children and try to still live life for them.



That is interesting, Cojuanco. What a contrast between then and now in Vietnam, in terms of priests celebrating mass freely. I don’t think we’ll ever know for sure if Diem’s assassination was approved by Kennedy, whether it was foreseen and permitted, or whether Kennedy planned to merely send Diem and family into exile. I have no illusions about Kennedy and was never enamored of the Kennedy family. But it bothers me greatly and still makes me sad to think that an assassin’s bullet(s) took Kennedy away from us on 11/22/63.

Rest in peace, President Kennedy. Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him.




As the wives of many men who fought during World War II learned that their husbands had died serving their country, Mrs. Kennedy knew her husband had died serving his. The doctors at Parkland Memorial Hospital offered but did not treat Mrs. Kennedy as she sat outside of Trauma Room One.




Did she refuse then if they offered?



Caroline is actually in Japan serving as ambassador but I’m not sure if there was something held there. Her son, JFK’s grandson, stood in her place when President Obama and others visited the gravesite this past week.



I was a young girl, living in far away Africa, so the event touched our lives in a different way. I do recall anxiety expressed by the adults around me, but there was also something of an ‘adult conspiracy’ to shelter us children from what had happened. Then, by a strange quirk of fate, I was exposed to a similar tragedy 31 years and 3 days later - except it was my elder daughter who was with her father, not me. Whenever this remembrance day rolls around, I find myself really emphasising with the young Jackie Kennedy and her children.



That day is deeply etched in my memory - here in New Zealand.
It was late spring, I was 14, and studying for exams as I lay sunbathing on the lawn, mid-morning Saturday (our time).
My best friend (and neighbour) lived in a house higher up the hill than our place, and it had a zig-zag path down to the road above our house. She came running down that path yelling out “President Kennedy has been killed!”
We actually didn’t have TV at our place because we were out of reach of TV reception where we were located (relatively early days of TV in NZ back then!). So we had to listen to the account on the radio.
Before dinner that evening we drove down to a shop that sold TVs and had the 6 p.m. news showing in the shop window. There was an enormous crowd there.

We had a lot of admiration for Kennedy, e.g. for how we perceived he handled the Cuba crisis, but as non-Americans I guess we didn’t know a lot about how he was rated in the US.



She did.




I was 9 years old, and remember John John’s salute like it was yesterday. I remember that really tall guy in the funny hat waking in the funeral procession (Charles de Gaulle), the riderless horse. The whole thing. It was a sad time, even in a family where both parents supported Nixon, and would the next year support Goldwater.




I was 16 and in high school at the time. I can also remember 9/11 like it was yesterday. It is weird how certain things etch themselves in your mind so you remember them so well even years later. My biggest memory was when Oswald was murdered a couple days later on live tv. Also seeing Walter Cronkite losing it when he was trying to report the assassination.


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