Cinema note told of shooting

From: Stuart M Worsnop, Scothern, Lincolnshire.

WHERE was I when I heard the news that President Kennedy had been assassinated?

I was 13 years of age, living in Cross Gates, Leeds, and I was sitting in the Regal Cinema when the film stopped and a handwritten note came up on screen, saying that President Kennedy had been shot.

Well, obviously there was much discussion and hoo hah amongst the audience but eventually the film restarted.

I suppose a lot of people were at the cinema when this news was announced but the film I was watching was PT 109, the story of JFK’s war service on board a motor torpedo boat in the Second World War.


From: Bernard Kenny, Batley Road, Birstall.

ON the day the assassination of the President took place, I was working underground on the coal face at Shaw Cross Colliery, Dewsbury.

A telephone massage was sent underground informing us of what had taken place. I think most of the men wanted the shift to end and get home.

After what had taken place in 1962, with the Cuban missile crisis, we thought a war was going to take place. As we know this did not happen. It was a sad day for America and the world.

From: Eric Houlder, Carleton, Pontefract.

MY wife Joan and I were in Pontefract bus station on the way to her sister Elaine’s 21st/engagement party at the Brotherton Fox on the Great North Road.

We had been married for only three months, and had no TV, carpets, fridge or car – the norm in those days. The bus station was full of the news.

Some years later, Elaine actually taught Jackie Onassis’s stepdaughter in Switzerland.

From: Mrs Jennifer Darvill, Woodlea Lane, Meanwood, Leeds.

ON November 22, 1963 I was with friends, watching The Beatles live on stage in Stockton-on-Tees.

When the show was over, on the bus on the way home people were talking about President Kennedy having been shot. As teenage girls, hoarse from screaming at the Fab Four, that news had no impact on us that night.

However, I was visibly moved at the funeral when little John Kennedy saluted his father’s coffin.

From: Robert H Smithson, Low Street, Beckingham, Doncaster.

I WAS in the school quadrangle of Woodhouse Grove School at Apperley Bridge.

I had just had my 12th birthday (November 19) and just started as a boarder in the September. I was still very homesick and unhappy.

When I heard the news I was not sure what assassinated meant – but I soon found out. I was devastated and all my troubles faded into significance. I remember feeling sad, disbelief and incredulous all at once – what was to happen now?

I often think of JFK, especially at this time of year, and wonder what the world might have been if not for that fateful day.