Shock in the choir stalls, and a chance reunion

From: Janet McCulloch, Grosvenor Crescent, Warmsworth, Doncaster.

IT was a Friday evening and we were at choir practice at St Mary’s Church, Wheatley, Doncaster.

Peter Pearson was late. He came into the choir stalls and announced: “Kennedy’s been shot!”

He said he had been injured but had been taken to hospital and we continued with choir practice.

Afterwards, as usual, a group of us walked from the church to the church hall further along the road, for youth club. When we arrived the hall was buzzing. “Kennedy’s been killed,” they said. “No, no, we replied, he’s only been injured.” “No, he’s dead,” they insisted.

After a while, we held a short impromptu service to pray for those involved and then drifted off home.

Many years later, after training and working away for several years, I was back in Doncaster working as a peripatetic teacher for hearing aid wearers.

I went into one of the schools I visited regularly and they introduced me to their new deputy head teacher. At break I said to one of the staff that I knew the new deputy head from somewhere.

She said: “You can’t, she’s from ‘down south.”

I thought no more about it until on another occasion we were talking about “the night Kennedy was shot” and I described what I had been doing. The deputy head exclaimed: “Oh, were you there as well?”

It turned out that she had been a member of the same youth club but with us both using our married names the penny had not dropped.

I knew I recognised her from somewhere but it was only because everyone knows exactly what they were doing that night that we were able to renew our acquaintance.