It was Friday, and I was looking forward to school getting out so I would have the weekend for pizza at Paul’s Friday night, work Saturday, and a little fun Sunday. I thought I was due some fun, because just three-days earlier, November 19, 1963, we had buried my great-grandmother, Frances Livinia Johnson Swain. Granny died at the age of ninety-two, and my family had been living with the sadness since.
At school that Friday, I had just returned to my seventh-grade classroom from lunch when we received shocking news. As I was digging under my cluttered desk searching for the book needed for our next lesson, the principal’s voice came on over the loud speaker hanging above the blackboard. Sister Mary Iratus’ voice, usually commanding and menacing was soft and halting. She said, “Boys and girls, a few minutes ago President Kennedy was shot in Texas. Please get on your knees and offer a prayer for our President.” Continue reading