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November 22, 2013

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

(Continued)

I suggested that my students return to their homes, prepare to spend these vast, uncertain hours with their families. Much later that evening, Leonard Bernstein led the New York Philharmonic Orchestra in Mahler’s “Resurrection” Symphony.

It was the only televised statement that day that made any sense.

Claire-Marie Hart

English Department

North Shore Community College

Danvers

Paying respect

At around 1:00 on that Friday afternoon, I was walking back from my college classes to my dormitory at Simmons College in Boston. I arrived at my dormitory, Simmons Hall, and found the living room filled with students all gathered around the one television in the dorm. This was very unusual, as we didn’t usually watch much TV in those days and definitely not at 1 in the afternoon. The other odd thing was that no one was talking and the only sound that could be heard was people crying. I whispered to the girl closest to me and asked what was going on, and she sobbed that President Kennedy had been shot. ...

Everyone was in shock and sobbing and hugging each other and also frightened at what would happen next. School was canceled until after Thanksgiving, and we all made arrangements to go home to our families. The streets were empty and silent except for people traveling to get to their homes, and everyone you looked at was crying. I think it was especially horrifying because the president was from Boston, and people here felt like he was family to Bostonians. His family home was only a few blocks from my dormitory. When I got home, my family and I stayed glued to the TV to watch the details unfold, and we felt we were paying our respects to a much beloved president.

Janice Skolnick

Beverly

Shock, grieving followed the day’s news

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