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Friday, 22 November
Author: Shiloh

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22 November, 1963...

One of the longer, more haunting days of my life... of most of our lives.

It's all a blur in my memory now, but I am able to go back and pick out a moment here, or a moment there...

Walter Cronkite taking off his glasses to wipe away his tears, while choking on the words he was reading on his teleprompter...

even the traffic in the streets seemed to have slowed.

Churches filling up as people entered to pray, to wonder, to think....

Stores, offices, business shutting down early, or closing.

Even Kroger, my part-time job at a grocery, closed until Saturday noon, the next day.

It was quite a bit to absorb, quite a bit to try to understand,

for the mind and emotions of a 16-year-old boy who had suddenly, without realizing it, just gotten a bit older.

The television news... the video.... over and over and over,

all weekend long....

Jackie, in her blood-stained suit, standing in witness to Johnson being sworn in as the 36th President of the United States...

John Kennedy laying in state in the Rotunda, his casket atop the same catafalque which held up Lincoln's casket, the long lines of those waiting to view one of the brightest stars in our history, the most well-known salute, known the world over, as little John Jr copied those around him....

The reversed boots in the stirrups, with saber hanging mutely by the side of the horse....

The eternal flame... the fresh Green Beret laid so gently on the grave every morning...

Taps, and the broken note as Army Sergeant Keith Clark missed the 6th note, as if in respect, and in grieving with the nation, for the man being honored...
It was the end of an era... Camelot had ended.

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