Thoughts on November 22, 1963
Posted Sunday, November 3, 2013 10:35 PM


                                       Remembering President Kennedy
November 22, 1963 is a vivid  memory for me, and I'm sure all of us from NBHS.  My own experience with that fateful day started at study hall when the announcement by principal Gracia came over the PA system.  I looked at the boy sitting next to me, Richard Landerville, and he was the first person in whose face I saw the shock reflecting.  As we walked into homeroom many of us were speculating if there was going to be a civil war and Mr. Krodvird as I wrote about before calmed us saying that we were a government of laws and the transition would be peaceful.
Who can forget walking down the street and  listening to broadcast news from every where?  The next few days were combination of shock and sorrow as we watched it all unfolding on TV.  We all mourned the loss of President Kennedy and still do.  President Kennedy was our President and the sorrow we felt was personal.  He was the man we wanted to marry or the man we hoped would last forever. He seemed so energetic, so confident and full of life and enthusiasm.  Nothing he did seemed wrong.  The Cuban crisis, the Bay of Pigs, the space challenge ... it was all about his reporting and his speeches which seemed to speak to us individually. 
We loved his young family and adored Jackie.  I wanted to have that same dignity and class that she showed as our First Lady.  The years turned into decades and now we have lost some of the awe of the presidency and we have since found out that President Kennedy had a dark side. There were so many allegations of infidelity that at some point some of it had to be true, but it didn't dim the affection and loyalty that I have for him.
On a personal level, I have shared these stories with my children and feel that I'm helping his legacy endure. 
Sadly tragedy didn't stop with that day in November.  I was able to draw from Mr Krodvird's wisdom when as a classroom teacher not too long ago I was asked by an elementary school child if I was scared.  That day, September 11, 2001, was this generation's November 22.    I told the kids sitting on the rug reading that I was "maybe a little scared", but that planes would be stopped from flying during a national emergency and we would remain safe.  I told them that I was angry and sad, but I knew we were safe and they seemed to feel less scared and I thought back to how our teachers in 1963 had shared our sorrows and calmed our fears. 
It's been a long time since that day, November 22, 1963, and in a way it's one of the events that holds us closer as classmates in our collective memory.