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Friday, November 22, 2013

This Day In History: The JFK Assassination

The sales have started and the frenzy is on to find the best deals, but I wanted to take a moment and remember the significance of today. 
Today marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F Kennedy. 

I wasn't even born when President Kennedy was in office or when he was killed, but it is an event that has always intrigued me. Like many others, I have wondered how things might be different today if he had lived. What if the shots had missed and the car had escaped safely under the overpass? What if his blood had never stained Jackie's lovely pink suit? What if no shots had had ever been fired at all? 

How different would our country be today? How would history have been altered had Kennedy lived? Where would we as a nation be?

John F Kennedy's inauguration brought a fresh energy, bright-eyed optimism and genuine hope and excitement for the future. He helped encourage people to do more and be more.  To excel and make things better. 

I don't necessarily think JFK was our greatest president. He was merely a human with human faults and failings, but it was certainly a magic time, a time when there was still innocence and hope. People still believed in so much. The Country, the President, each other. There was respect for one another. There was a certain unity and a desire to solve problems, not cause them.

I feel a sadness not just because a President was cut down in what should have been a prime moment, but because a wife lost a husband and was a forced witness to that horrible moment, innocent children lost their father, a family lost a beloved member. Even though I wasn't alive then, watching the footage, seeing the photos, the sense that a certain magic ended that day, lingers and sticks.

I don't think we have been told the truth about his assassination and I'm not sure we'll ever know. All I know was it was definitely a moment that altered the course and history of this nation. We are left to wonder why and speculate. We are left to gaze upon those haunting images. 

Then again, maybe there are still lessons to be learned from John F Kennedy's story..... 

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