John F. Kennedy (May 29, 1917-November 22, 1963)

    November 22, 1963 headlines screamed that John Fitzgerald Kennedy, thirty-fifth president of the United States had been assassinated at 12:30 p.m. Central Standard Time in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas. He was fatally shot while riding in a motorcade accompanied by his wife Jacqueline, Texas Governor John Connally and his wife, Nellie.
    I stood, riveted to the spot in the second floor of Central Bank, Monroe, Louisiana where a coworker brought this news. Today, November 22, 2011 forty-eight years later, as I sit at my computer in the San Francisco East Bay, I’m saddened by the lack of headlines of the anniversary of this tragic event that rocked the twentieth century. I’m even more astonished that United Press International (UPI) added an extra year to Kennedy’s life with 1917-1964.
    As Occupy protesters sit-in garner today’s news headlines, forgotten are these final words from John F. Kennedy’s inaugural speech, January 21, 1961:

“And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man. Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.”

    Perhaps November 22, 2013, the fiftieth anniversary, will honor this orator for his appropriate words.

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