It is tough telling little kids something like a president being killed…I remember some news station making a big deal about when a class was told about it and then were told they were to go home, school was closing…So all they heard was that school was out, so they cheered…so of course all that news station reported was that the kids cheered when they heard about the shooting…Yep, great reporters even in those days…
Most Pluggers I know were at work – not at school – when they heard the news about the tragic events in Dallas.
May America continue to miss you, JFK (I was born 21 years after the event).
I got the news over the school’s intercom system…I was in the fourth grade at the time. we were sent home right after the announcement.
I was in the third grade, but I got the news the same way. I think we were also sent home right after the announcement.
I was a college freshman. Our elderly instructor, a woman, continued teaching, with both male and female students crying. One was literally sick to her stomach. One walked out. She continued until the dean returned and told her to let us go the college had shut down. I wish I could forget her and her total indifference.
In my case the teacher was a nun and had us pray for JFK.
I was grateful that my boss was out on assignment. He was a Goldwater fan and I thought he would be dancing with joy. His absence gave me the opportunity to grieve without his ranting.
College sophomore, we didn’t find out until after the class was over.
Was in a fifth grade after school fun group in the gym; a teacher or the principal came in and told us. After crying for awhile we were all sent home.
I was in 10th grade, don’t remember what class but there was a tv in the room and an admin person came in and told us and the teacher turned the tv on. We were in Arlington, Va., very close to Washington DC, so the coverage was extensive. We left school at the regular time which was 2:30 or so anyway.
I was born in 1970 but having seen the great amount of news footage, learning history, etc., I still cry when I see it now. How tragic this was for America.
was buying shoes in downtown Erie, PA… next stop was to our brokers to buy 15 shares of Sinclair Oil… stock market was still open at the moment, and all the financial ramifications still ran through my head, but we decided we just couldn’t go on with business as usual and went home and packed for a family gathering some 100 miles away… at which we would watch Ruby shoot Oswald… for the record, when word came of Pearl Harbor, I was taking a bath, I have been told…
I was in college on the days in 1981 that Reagan, and later Pope John Paul II, were shot. The professor in the class I had on the day in March merely made an announcement and carried on with class; the professor in the class I had on the day in May brought in a TV and all we did was watch news coverage.
What was fifty years ago today?
Went to the dentist that dayI was 7
….got the tragic radio report over the school intercom system during a high school history class….how ironic
Announced over the PA system at Cleveland Heights High, don’t remember what class, just finished writing out the Getteysburg Adress which we had to learn, finished and handed it in, walked back to my desk and threw my pencil accross the room, I always remember that. Can’t believe it’s been 50 years!
This was my exact scene as well – 7th grade in Mrs. Rosenberg’s English Lit class. Only in our case, the principal made the announcement over the intercom. One of the girls in the class laughed out loud – just a nervous reaction.
I was in my Womb
Sophomore in HS Band Class. Last class of the day.
I was in Algebra 1 (8th grade) sitting in the middle of the class talking to Cecil Duncan who was on my left. The teacher (Mrs. Weymeyer) came in and told us the president had been shot.
I was a young mom with a year old baby and another on the way, watching GIRL TALK on TV when they broke in with the news. It was the biggest shock and horror of my young life. It felt like a beloved family member had been murdered. I literally cried for days and the Funeral was on my daughter’s first birthday.
Really nailed it. I was coming back into H.S, from lunch and heard rumors. Teacher then confirmed it
I was in 8th grade. School closed and I had to walk five brothers and sisters over a mile home because of no ride. Youngest was in first grade.
4 yrs. old watching cartoons at my aunts, all 3 channels went to news coverage and I couldn’t understand why my aunt came into room and suddenly burst into tears.
I was in fifth grade and they let us go home. We watched it on tv the rest of the day.
This was how a five year old girl learned the word “assassinated.”
I just got home from kindergarten and was watching the afternoon soaps with my mom when the news broke. We started praying for him. For days the after our town looked like a ghost town, no one was on the streets, everyone was inside glued to their tvs.
They refered to him as the “late” president. As a 5-year-old boy I wondered what he was late for.
Wasn’t born yet but understand the importance of the last sitting president to be assassinated.
Grad school, research assistant. Got the new when I got in my car to go to lunch. Knew right away something was amiss when I heard “Ave Maria” when it should have been noon news.
Eighth grade science class. The teacher cried.
I was working in a factory as a machine set-up man. First job right out of high school. I thought the world had ended…that feeling of dread and apprehension. In a sense, it had.
I was 1 month old. I was told my 82 yr old Great-Grandmother had a heart attack after hearing and passed a week later.
Had just returned from my fathers funeral, teaching electronic warfare at ‘Somewhere USA’ and heard the word thru the PA, thus we all went home to watch Walter Cronkite and CBSNews for the rest of the weekend. I note that most of todays GoComics ‘comments’ are made by snide and snotty sorts who well could be my grand-kids’ age and their version of what history could have been. We did what we could with what we had with the information at hand. NObody had the ability to see the future, even those ‘palmists’ with their roadside signs. Preachment over.
I remember. 7th grade reading class. The teacher across the hall flew into the room, grabbed our teacher, and yanked her out the door. She came back in a couple of minutes later and announced that we would be going to the room across the hall, the geography classroom. Filed over there, and most of the kids in the class were crying. The TV was on, and Walter Cronkite was on live with the coverage of the shooting in Dallas. Nobody said anything; most of the kids were crying, boys included. I was so shocked I couldn’t do anything, not even cry. School was dismissed early that day. My Dad was in front of the TV with Mom, and he had tears running down his face; it was the only time I ever saw him cry. One of the saddest days of my life.
Jo Clear: Is that why, in the wealthier schools, the kids ran amok in the halls yelling, We’re free! We’re free!", and the teacher who verified it was fired and blacklisted? In other shortened days, they just went home. I was in Mesquite (parasitic suburb of Dallas) when it happened. I asked permission to close the recreation center for the rest of the day and their only concern was that I stay there and not take a day off. Considering the closed nature of the Dallas Citizens Council political machine, it is likely that some of those rejoicing kids will be in Dealey Plaza today, applying another coat of whitewash..“Lord God of Hosts, Be with us yet, Lest we forget, Lest we forget.” – Kipling
I was home from school, nursing a broken collar bone.
Seventh grade in home room. We were ushered into the hallways and after 10 or 15 minutes, sent home. No one said anything about why. I found out when I got home since the tv was on and my parents were watching the news.
This hits close to home, I was in Mrs Weed’s modern history class, and the chemistry teacher walked in and whispered something to Mrs Weed. And she said, “would you tell them?” And he did. If we measure a presidency by how positive, pleasant, and uplifting being an American is, here was a great President. A great President indeed.
I was a Junior in High school. In English III class.
1st grade here. We had a hand writing (printing) assignment. I still have mine. It says “The President was shot today.” I lived near Fort Hood where my dad was stationed.
I was in the 5th grade. I didn’t understand what happened, but my parents were really shook. I remember watching the funeral.
He was my Commander-in-Chief. I was on leave in Kaiserslautern, Germany, buying postage stamps for my collection. Since I had learned German in high school, the shop owner said to me (auf Deutsch) “I’m sorry about what happened to President Kennedy.” Before this I had heard nothing.
I asked what had happened and he said (I thought) “He was shot.” I didn’t know then that the Germans have different words for “shot” and “shot to death”, but I could tell this was serious, so I asked if Kennedy was dead. Though I was not a fan, my hard sank when I was told yes.
My first thought was whether this was part of some plot and was there an interruption to government, so I asked if Johnson was now president. When I was told yes, I felt some relief that there was still a chain of command. I went out on the street of heavily-G.I. K-town and stopped the first officer I saw who confirmed what had happened. I asked whether there was an alert and I should return to base. He said no, but keep listening to the radio.
I continued on my trip to Frankfurt for a ballet performance I had always wanted to see, but it was cancelled and replaced with the grim Verdi opera “The Force of Destiny”. At the end of the performance there was no applause, creating a surreal moment.
The Germans loved JFK, especially after his (grammatically incorrect) “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech. I’ve always been angered by how most people gloss over the fact that Oswald was a Communist.
Keep your anti-political BS off of here already! I don’t want to see any of it! (And my opinion weighs as much as yours.)
Kindergarten. Friday afternoon was always Show & Tell time, and my classmate had brought his new transistor radio. We were listening to it when the news hit. I don’t recall getting out of class any earlier than usual, but at the time we knew he was shot & taken to the hospital, but not that he had died yet. When I got home I asked my mom if the President would be OK, and she told me no, he had died and gone to Heaven. I remember kept asking whether they could do an operation to take the bullet out of his head, and wouldn’t he be OK then?I spent the next few days sitting on my Dad’s lap watching all the TV coverage, Oswald being shot, JFK’s funeral, the riderless horse, John-John and Caroline (I always wanted to go to the White House to play with Caroline; she was close to my age and I thought she looked like a nice friend to have!) I’ll never forget it.Incidentally, the boy who brought the radio that day was kind of a class-clown type (nowadays he’d probably have an ADHD diagnosis), and the only kid in our class to flunk first grade. And guess what; he grew up to be DOCTOR class-clown kid!
I had turned 5 the day before. What I remember most was looking at JFK’s young children (my age and younger) and thinking that someone shot their Daddy. For a long time, I was worried that someone would shoot my Daddy. After all, he worked for the government too. I was too little to understand the difference between a GS6 worker at Fleet Accounting in Norfolk, VA and the President of the United States.
I remember when I was yesterday when I heard how the Democrats being Democrats, Violated the Constitution. Again.
I was in the second grade and I believe my brother-in-law came to the school and informed all the adults. We were let out and sent home early. Only time I know of my brother-in-law crying.
I was in 9th grade, sittomg in 7th period study hall when we got the word that JFK was shot. During 9th period science class we saw flag outside of school being lowered to half mast.
I was in the third grade and this is just about how it was, our teacher Mrs, Smith was late getting back to classroom and she was NEVER late when she did come in she said “I have Very bad news” and then she said school was over for the rest of day.
I was doing math (as I recall) in a second grade class. A voice came over the PA speaker that I did not recognize (I frequently ran errands for the teacher; so I knew all the voices in the office) saying that the president was dead. We didn’t even get the initial bulletins that he’d been shot. The teacher looked up at the speaker in shock, the rest of us in surprise; then she said, “Let’s hope he’s joking.” But we all knew you didn’t joke about something like that. I was glued to the TV for the next four days.
I think I am in the back of this classroom. My experience was almost exactly like this. I was in 4th grade, and our teacher had stepped out for a minute. She came back and told us that the president had been shot, and if we would all be very quiet, she would go back and find out more. I have never been in a quieter room, especially with 30 other people.A few minutes later, she came back and told us he was gone.
Second grade. They didn’t announce it at our school; I walked home with the older girl from across the street and found my dad home from work an hour early. He and my mom were in front of the TV, crying. This was really scary because that was an era when “men” didn’t cry unless someone they loved died.
Gary Brookins and Susie MacNelly