There are moments when you realise, ‘This is history in the making,’ and you remember exactly where you were when you heard the news. For older people, the supreme ‘where were you when you heard...?’ moment is the death of John Kennedy, 35th President of the United States of America.
On November 22, 1963, Kennedy was visiting Dallas to mark the start of his campaign for the 1964 Presidential Election. He was being driven through the city in an open car, accompanied by his wife, the Governor of Texas John Connally, and Mrs. Connally. The motorcade’s route had been well-publicised in advance, with the result that crowds had turned out to see the President. As the procession went into Dealey Plaza, Kennedy was hit by two bullets, the second causing fatal head injuries. Governor Connally was seriously injured but recovered from his wounds.
Lee Harvey Oswald, the disaffected former U.S. Marine who shot Kennedy, was later arrested, but not before he had killed a policeman, Jefferson Tippet, the almost-forgotten victim of that day. Almost immediately, conspiracy theories began about these events. 60 years later, they still abound. Kennedy, a complex figure, was given a status in death that he might not have attained if he had lived to serve a second term covering the years of American involvement in Vietnam.
Linton & District History Society will next meet on Wednesday, December 7. We will be hearing from John Putley about ‘Pilgrims and Pilgrimage in Gloucestershire.’ Our meetings are in Linton Village Hall; doors open at 7, with a 7:30 p.m. start, and visitors (£5) are very welcome.