Letters Reveal What the World Was Like the Day JFK Was Shot

(AP Photo, File)

Going through a box of memorabilia from family and friends recently, I found two letters. (The story you’re about to read is true; the names have been changed to protect the innocent.) On the morning of Nov. 22, 1963, a young married professional in Dallas wrote to his parents. After discussing some recently purchased furniture, he added off-handedly:


In about three hours from now the President and his party will pass in front of our office. It is raining and the city is out with street washers washing it off and people out in the rain picking up paper. It is really comical. Laura has a Doctor’s appointment this morning and then she is coming by here and we are going to lunch. Aaron is going to meet us for lunch. Laura wants to go over to the Trade Mart for lunch so that she can see Jackie. I don’t know how much we will be able to see but I guess we will go over.

If it had kept raining, the 35th president of the United States would not have been riding in an open car. But the skies cleared up, and the program went on as planned.

This young man followed up with another letter on Nov. 23, 1963:

Dear Mother and Dad:

I am sure that you as well as we and the rest of the country find it hard to believe what happened yesterday.

Laura and I had gone to the Marriott Motel across from the Trade Mart to have a sandwich before going over to the Trade Mart to hear Kennedy. We had just paid the check and were walking out when we saw the two Presidential limousines pass the front of the Trade Mart. This was the route that they were to take and he was to enter the side door of the Trade Mart. I told Laura that they certainly were going pretty fast. We actually could not tell what had happened or if anything was wrong.

We went into the Trade Mart and most of the people were seated for the banquet. A friend of mine came up to me and told me the President had been shot. As most people would have thought we took it as a joke. We began to tell that he was serious and then someone came up with a radio. The people in the banquet area still had not heard the news and they were still playing music. We had been informed by a policeman that we would not be able to leave until the President left. I told Laura at the time that this was the time to get out before they announced it to the crowd. We got out and headed for the car.

By this time it was on all the radios and that area was flooded with sirens, policeman [sic], and ambulances. Reporters were packed in Ambulances going to Parkland Hospital. In case you do not remember, Parkland is on Harry Hines and about one half mile from my office.

A policeman stopped me and asked if I would take a reporter to Parkland Hospital. She got in the car and we were to cross some train tracks. If you remember these are the tracks between the office and Trade Mart. This is only a distance of about 400 yards. A train was going to cross the crossing and a policeman jumped on the train and stopped the train. This could have been done for two reasons. The train was actually coming from the area where Kennedy had been shot and it was also blocking traffic between the Trade Mart and Parkland Hospital.

All of this was happening between 12:25 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. I remember that we kept looking at our watches in the Marriott to get out in time. In wasn’t until after that we had left Parkland that we found out that he had died. This is a day that we will long remember and you just seemed to be swept up with all that was happening.


That day fifty-nine years ago, which went so very differently from what this young man and his wife expected, changed everything in ways that even today aren’t fully understood. The Warren Commission report asserted that the assassin Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone, but there is an entire cottage industry of alternative explanations and lingering suspicions that the CIA and/or FBI were involved. After the Russian collusion hoax and more that we have seen over the last few years (and before that, going all the way back to the Gulf of Tonkin incident that got us into the Vietnam War), that’s a lot more plausible than it used to be, but we may never know for sure.

Related: JFK’s Harvard Entrance Essay Resurfaces, Is Branded ‘Peak White Mediocrity’

In any case, there is so much about JFK and his death that is eerily reminiscent of our situation today: the establishment media covering up his Addison’s disease and personal peccadilloes just as zealously as it covers today for Old Joe’s dementia and his crack-addicted, corrupt son; growing suspicions that the government is not leveling with us; and even questions about the veracity of election results (Richard Nixon was sure that the 1960 election had been stolen from him but opted not to contest it).

The world we live in was born in many ways during the JFK era. And just as that young couple of my acquaintance unsuspectingly went to the Trade Mart to see the president while world-changing events were taking place, so today most Americans are still going about their business as usual without realizing how severely the Left and America’s other enemies are threatening our republic and our society today. (That’s the focus of my forthcoming book, The Sumter Gambit: How the Left Is Trying to Foment a Civil War.) But as it soon became horrifying clear what had happened on Nov. 22, 1963 (if not why, or by whom), so also what is happening today will all become obvious eventually.




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