I just recently came back from a visit to Dallas Texas. An unusual city. . . no shopping area filled with restaurants in the downtown area (unlike New York or Chicago). We wandered into a Western Wear store where I finally found the pair of cowboy boots I’ve always wanted. Yeehaaww. Now I walk a little taller! Happy day!
Then I found out that just a few blocks south was Dealy Plaza. I have known all my life was happened there. I was just 20 months old, napping or playing when President John F. Kennedy was murdered on November 22, 1963.
We went to the “Sixth Floor Museum”. The museum is in the old “Texas Schoolbook Depository” building where Lee Harvey Oswald built his sniper’s nest and shot the President from the sixth floor. The museum is excellent, but horribly sad. All of it points to tragedy. I held back tears the whole time I walked through it. One of the saddest things I saw was the table setting that was for President Kennedy at the luncheon he was scheduled to visit. All the people joyfully expecting the President to show up and eat lunch with them. That happy day destroyed by a hate-filled murderous misfit.
Did Oswald really do it? Although the museum gives much evidence that there were other shooters, I think that Oswald was indeed the man who fired the fatal shot. Three empty shell casings were found at his sniper’s nest (you can still see the area where he set up). The first shot missed. The second shot went through Kennedy’s back and throat and wounded Governor Connelly. The third shot blew the top part of President Kennedy’s head off. As I was standing there with some former Marines, I commented that it was one whale of a shot. They concurred.
The street (Elm Street) is still a busy street. A white “X” marks the spot on the street where the first shot hit. A second “X” marks where the second shot killed him.
I just stood on the “grassy knoll” and stared at it. With tears in my eyes. And walked away.
What could have been, but never was.