09/02/03 - posted by Leslie Guilloz
Patti,

I was a fourth grader at Commodore Sloat when JFK was shot. My teacher was Mrs. Ritchie. My fifth grade teacher was Mr. Michelli. Do you remember them?

Anyway, Myrs. Ritchie was really mean. I started biting my fingernails in her class! She was always on us for something. We had just come in from recess and she told us all to sit down and listen carefully.

"Children, " she began in her usual serious tone, "the President has been shocked!"

Oh, Sure! I thought, now she wants us the believe even the President is shocked by our behavior. A minute later another teacher came to the door. Then Mrs. Richie said the President was dead and I realized what she had really said!

We had an emergency recess and I rmember rumors that Johnson had had a heart attack and no one was in charge of the country, the Russians were going to bomb us, etc.

I was 8 1/2 (skipped 1/2 a grade) and remember watching the funeral on TV. I don't remember really understanding the importance of the situation the way the adults and older kids did.
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