MY VIEW OF THE KENNEDY MOTORCADE IN HOUSTON, NOVEMBER 21

11/21/2019
Fifty Nine years ago today (Thursday) I learned that the Kennedy motorcade would be going
within a few blocks of my Houston apartment. This was my chance to see a U.S. president and
his wife in person and I hurried to where they would be crossing. (At the intersection of Broadway
and Telephone, coming from what is now Hobby Airport). When I arrived, several people were
already gathered on the street and a few were in trees. My timing was perfect. Within minutes
the motorcade arrived with Jackie and Jack seated in the back of the open car. They were within
a few yards of me and I observed a feature about Jackie that I had never noticed before. Her
eyes were very wide apart. Seeing people in the trees started me to thinking that someone might
harm them. Little did I know that it would happen the next day in Dallas.  The next Day, Friday,
November 22, 1963, while standing in front of my 9th grade Physical Science class, that terrible
announcement was made. President Kennedy, traveling in a motorcade in downtown Dallas, had
been shot and was being taken to Parkland hospital. We were all stunned and bad thoughts of
all kinds of things emerged. All year we had been practicing for what to do if there was an attack
by Russia. What if this was the start of that attack? Then the thought struck me: what if they try
to kill more of our officials. I think everyone was fearful that Russia had something to do with the
shooting. To increase my worries even more, I was supposed to go to Commerce (a short way
from Dallas) on this night because I had a date Saturday night with Betsy Curtis, an East State
Cheerleader.  As things unfolded, it wasn’t long before they announced that Kennedy was dead
and Lyndon Johnson was sworn in. Maybe Johnson was behind this. It wasn’t  long before I
learned that Lee Harvey Oswald had a shootout with a policeman and had been captured in a
Dallas movie theater.  Then to everyone’s relief, Oswald was captured and named as the
shooter. This eased my mind, at least for the moment. But, maybe there were more shooters and
more assassinations planned. No one knew for sure. All kinds of things were going through my
mind as I prepared to travel from Houston to Commerce.
The rest of my story will be told later.