Saturday, November 22, 2008

The LuLac Edition #647, Nov. 22nd, 2008



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:


At 12:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Catholics reacted like African
Americans today to the election of JFK. One of our own was elected President. They said it would never happen and it did and together weve come a long way. True the Kennedy legacy has been tarnished badly and in some cases rightfully so since 1963. Worse yet for the Catholic Church which like GM and Ford has lost touch with the people who supported it. I was a kid, a Catholic and a Kennedy nut back then. Today I'm none of the three and can barely remember the innocence of the era, but for one brief shinning moment it seemed all was right and it was good to be all the things we were
and could become.

At 1:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its so hard to imagine that was 45 years ago. Like Pearl Harbor its fading into history and people no longer tell the story of where they
were when the news came down.
I enjoy your site and look forward to the 1968 feature. It was a pivotal year especially for those of us who lived it and were able to try and understand what was going on at the time.


At 11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your comments on the Kennedy killing mirror what people of your generation felt about him. Your depth and memory is incredible. How old were you? 8? 9? when this happened. I saw JFK at the Watrus Armory in Scranton and it is something I will never forget. Just like 11/22/63.

At 12:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A large percentage of Americans still believe there was a conspiracy. Perhaps not the conspiracy in the film JFK, but something. Oliver Stone was damned for offering a possible
scenario and Jim Garrison for insisting the Warren Commission was way off base. A cousin who was an FBI Agent in Dallas in '63 said at a family gathering that there were things we would never know in our lifetimes concerning 11/22/63.
I believe we will never know the whole "truth." Hard to accept Oswald was alone and the Jack Ruby
involvement is just too strange.
The JFK, MLK and RFK assasinations
all leave a strange taste even after all these years.


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