Monday, November 23, 2020

These Dates

November 22nd..... November 23rd.... November 24th and 25th and the rest of what would have been Thanksgiving but instead was filled with mourning.

President and Mrs. Kennedy deplaned in the morning and were covered in blood by the afternoon.  Little kids were happy that school was cancelled; the rest of the world was stunned.  It was dreary and cold and nobody's parents wanted to drive anywhere fun.  

The black and white images on the television felt oddly appropriate; bright colors would have interefered with the sadness.  

And there was so much sadness.

I knew little of The Bay of Pigs or our initial forays into Vietnam.  I knew that the President was elegant and handsome and smart because he went to Harvard.  I knew he was brave because I read PT-109 and I believed every single word of it.  I knew he saved us from nuclear destruction by Russia, via Cuba.  I knew he loved America and would work to keep me safe.

This is the book; I remember the cover.

I knew Jackie (because she was always Jackie) from her televised White House tour and her pill box hats.  I knew about John-John and Caroline and Hyannisport and all those other Kennedy's.  

That I was going to lose all that took the weekend to sink in.  I remember being in the driveway, hoping a neighbor would show up and play something.... anything.... to make the sadness go away.  Inside, the tv showed the caisson rolling down Pennsylvania Avenue.  Outside, it was grey and cold and sad.

It's still sad, today.


  1. There was so much sadness. I was in 6th grade. Miss Pugh sat at her desk and cried. I don't think I had ever seen a teacher cry before. My parents were grocery shopping when they heard the news, they left the store and came to school to pick me up. Then we went home, turned on the tv, and were sad together.

  2. 6th grade it was, too. The story got worse as we walked through the halls. Mr. Quinlan (math 6X) sat silent at the front of the classroom as the principal made the announcement.


Talk back to me! Word Verification is gone!