, Salem, MA

Local News

November 22, 2013

Nov. 22, 1963: Where were you when Kennedy was shot?


Speros A. Zakas


An unforgettable announcement

I was a sophomore at Stoneham High School. I was in a U.S. History class when the principal of our high school came over the loudspeaker and made the first announcement that President Kennedy had been shot, and then in another few minutes, the principal announced that President Kennedy had died. The weather was very typical for November; it was a cold, dark and very dreary day.

I was also very privileged to have attended Mass at St. Francis Xavier in Hyannis with President and Mrs. Kennedy. Friends of my family owned property on Cape Cod, and we used to attend Mass where President Kennedy and his family attended.

Marilyn Michalak


‘The silence in the restaurant was remarkable’

I received my commission as an ensign in the USNR at the Naval Base in Newport, R.I., the morning of the assassination. My parents, my fiancee, Anna Marie, and I were just passing through Providence on our way to Old Greenwich, Conn., when we heard the news on the radio. Later in our trip, we stopped at a rest-stop restaurant on the Connecticut Turnpike, and the silence in the restaurant was remarkable. Everyone was speaking in hushed tone.

Richard C. Feyl


‘We stayed glued to the television’

We were living in Hayward, Calif., a town 20 miles south of San Francisco. Leo, a Navy chief and a native of Dallas, Texas, was stationed in San Francisco on recruiting duty and was at work that day. As the announcement of President Kennedy’s assassination came over the radio, work came to a halt, with everyone listening to the radio. Priscilla was driving son Tom, 4, to a preschool session with daughters Katherine, 2, and Elizabeth, 1 month, in the car when the news came over the radio. Like all Americans, we stayed glued to the television watching Walter Cronkite give the terrible and unbelievable news.

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