On November 22, 1963, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas Texas. I had just graduated from high school where I got my first dose of reality during the Cuban Missile Crisis. One week after graduation, my friend and I took a 1954 Ford which he purchased for $50 and went to Birmingham, Alabama to follow the NASCAR Modified Series.
Three months later, I returned to Miami and got my first job at a warehouse about a mile from my home. It was at that job on November, 22, 1963 that the public address system came on and it was announced that the president had been shot and had been rushed to the hospital in Dallas, Texas.
As people scrambled to tune their portable radios to the news, I couldn't help but believe that someone would soon announce that the president had undergone surgery and would be fine. But, it was not to be.....
Soon thereafter, it was announced that the president was pronounced dead at 2:00 p.m Central Standard Time. We were told to go home and that we would be paid for the entire day.
As I slowly walked home, I remembered how John Wayne always seem to survive all of those war movies. That was my second dose of the realities of life and little did I know that there was a place called Vietnam that would soon complicate my life and millions of other lives as well.
I cried as I watched the funeral of John F. Kennedy.