The LuLac Edition #647, Nov. 22nd, 2008
PHOTO INDEX: JFK PRAYER CARDS HANDED OUT IN CATHOLIC CHURCHES IN NOVEMBER 1963 AND A WIDELY CIRCULATED PHOTO FROM THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER.
45 YEARS TODAY
It was 45 years ago today that President John Kennedy was killed in Dallas. It was a beautiful fall Friday. We all were living for the weekend. What turned out to be a relaxing couple of days before Thanksgiving turned into a 4 day TV melodrama that will be forever burned in the minds of people born in the early to mid 1950s.
Kennedy was the first President elected in the 20th century that was actually born in that time frame. The source of pride my parents felt, that entire generation’s realization that he was “one of their own” only magnified the anguish and sorrow of his death. Conspiracy theories aside, the death of JFK became a milestone as well as a burden that entire families, Democrat and Republican would carry through the years. Each year the day is commemorated silently. Long gone are the days when you could share with people where you were when it happened. Now, there are people born years after this fateful day that see JFK as a far away icon.
45 years ago today the country changed as we knew it. A $12.95 rifle in the hands of a disgruntled, insane 26 year old took away an innocence we had, a belief we possessed in our country. Time has moved on. Today we have a new generation of Americans that put its faith in a young, charismatic leader. We, of the Kennedy generation hope and prayer Barack Obama gets to fulfill his promise.
What is left of John Kennedy as a President is a mixed legacy. However, there are still touching moments of that by gone era. The photo you see in today’s index was one printed by the Philadelphia Inquirer the weekend of JFK’s death. By Thanksgiving, that photo was in nearly 90% of the homes and businesses in the town I grew up in. The prayer card was handed out in Catholic churches the next weekend. Pictures fade and pieces of memorabilia get lost. But lasting memories come from the heart. One weekend in the early 70s, I accompanied my uncle Timmy Pribula to the Knights of Columbus Hall in Pittston. (The Knights changed their chapter name to honor JFK, the women’s auxiliary even called themselves the Jacquelines.) As we were leaving, I saw my uncle put his hand on the portrait of John Kennedy and say softly, “Goodnight Jack” and left the building. “Goodnight Jack” indeed. Memories die hard when it comes to this day and the man who died on it.
Check out the 590 FOREVER BLOG for anniversary coverage and thoughts. Here's the link: http://david-yonki.blogspot.com/