November 21, 2013
I was 15 years old and sitting in history class when suddenly the school principal came over the loud speaker and slowly declared in a Solomon voice, “President Kennedy has just been mortally wounded in Dallas, Texas” I suddenly looked at the wall clock and it read 1:35 P.M. (eastern time). A few minutes later classes were dismissed and I slowly made my way out he heavy wooden doors and continued the long walk home in a cold gloomy rain. It still hadn’t registered with me what actually had happened at that moment in time. Throughout the weekend I contemplated what this situation meant but it still hadn’t registered with me at the instant. Several minutes later I just happened to recall 3 years earlier when mother and I walked over to 16th street and for a brief moment not far from the infamous Indy 500 racetrack, we gazed upon not the president but a human being who looked more like a movie star at the time.
Mother acted like a teenager at that moment and I just stood there wondering what all the fuss was about at that instant. One must understand back in those days, children still had a sense of innocence about them. They were more concerned with playing children’s games rather than involve themselves into the riggers of life. It wasn’t long before things were beginning to conform to a new sense of reality for me. When Monday morning arrived, I finally realized the finality of the heartbreaking situation then before me. For some reason I decided to get candles and lit them in honor of the fallen president. An overwhelming sense of sadness quickly entered my perplexed mind at that moment of utter confusion. I remember a few tears running down my cheeks watching the funeral on the television but I still didn’t fully understand why I was so sad at the time. I remembered mother being virtually heart broken at the time and my step dad was a little suspicious of what happened but he didn’t express his feelings at the time.
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