November 22, 1963 Remembered

Believe it or not it has been 46 years since the tragic events of the weekend of November 22 – 25, 1963.

John Fitzgerald Kennedy was elected November 8, 1960 as the youngest president at 43 years of age. (Teddy Roosevelt was youngest to take office, but he assumed office after McKinley’s assassination.) John Kennedy took office January 20, 1961 with a promise of his New Frontier. Together with his beautiful wife Jackie and young children they charmed the nation and the world.

In preparation for the election of 1964 Kennedy wanted to win the electoral votes of the populous state of  Texas. He decided to make a trip to Texas in late November 1963.

On the morning of Friday November 23, 1963 he and his wife took breakfast in Fort Worth and flew to Dallas afterwards. Their arrival at Love Field was greeted by a large crowd.

A motorcade then left from the airport with a planned arrival at the Trade Mart around 1:00pm local time. Kennedy, his wife, and Governor John Connally of Texas and his wife rode in an open Lincoln limousine through the downtown. On their way they passed the Texas School Book Depository.  As they turned the corner from Houston to Elm Street shots rang out. Kennedy was struck in the back with an exit out the neck. This would have been a nonfatal shot. Seconds later he was hit by a bullet in the head effectively killing him.  The time was 12:30 pm Central Standard Time. He was taken to Parkland Hospital where he was pronounced dead at around 1:00 pm local time.

Lyndon Baines Johnson, the Vice President effectively became the 36th president upon Kennedy’s death. He took the oath of office in Air Force One just before departing for Washington, D.C.

Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested several hours later in a Dallas movie theatre. He was charged with Kennedy’s murder.

Oswald was being moved from the jail to more secure quarters on Sunday November 24th. While being escorted through the basement of police headquarters, Jack Ruby a local nightclub owner with mob ties, stepped forward and shot Oswald at point-blank range. Oswald died later at Parkland Hospital. The truth died with him.

Monday November 25th the funeral of President Kennedy took place in Washington, D.C. Millions watched the event on television in disbelief that this young president could have been taken from us so suddenly.

He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

To this day there remain many unanswered questions and mysteries surrounding his assassination.

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