Banana Don’s Slice of Americana – Nov. 22, 1963
Since everybody who is old enough to remember will be talking about this today - I'll give you my story about "where I was" when JFK was shot.
On November 22, 1963, I was a four year old little kid in a toy store in Sacramento, CA. About a year older than JFK Jr. This is literally the earliest thing I can remember clearly. I was at the toy store with my mom - and I'm assuming my 17 month old brother. (even though I don't remember him being there - sorry Steve) I remember everybody in the store gathering at the main counter, listening to the radio and being very upset. It didn't take long for everybody to start leaving the store. My mom grabbed my hand and said, "we need to get home".
I never asked him when he was alive, but my dad must have been anxious for a few minutes. He'd only been out of the active Air Force for a few years and was an aeronautical engineer working on military missile systems and was an officer in the Air Force Reserves. Having been only a year since the Cuban Missile Crisis - and the middle of the Cold War, after the assasination, the U.S. military went on alert while they tried to figure out who had killed the president. Had to have been an interesting day at work for him.
Of course, there were no cable news outlets in 1963. You were lucky if your TV got three channels. But this was the first time TV had the capabilty to do extended live coverage of a huge news event, so they did. For the next three days. I remember watching the funeral procession with the president's casket on a horse drawn caisson. I vividly remember how silent everything seemed to be, except for the sound of the horses' hooves.
The next time there would be this much TV coverage of an event would be after the events on 9/11. Technology had changed by then, but what stayed the same, was that "time standing still" moment. If you're sixteen now, you'll be 54 in the year 2051 on the 50th anniversary of 9/11. So, it'll be YOU sharing your thoughts that day.
That's what I remember. It definitely left an impression. Hopefully, there will be no more.