A year-long countdown begins
The family of President Kennedy has often said that they'd rather have the nation remember the slain Chief Executive on his birthday, rather than on the day he was assassinated.
That's not going to happen, not so long as there are still people around who were alive on November 22nd, 1963 or as the murder turns 50 years old next fall.
Even the Kennedy Museum in Boston is gearing up for what looks to be a year-long observance. Most of the exhibits are about his life both before and during his time in the White House, but it's a safe bet that the crowds will be larger as Kennedy becomes top-of-mind in the months ahead.
Expect a rerunning of virtually every movie ever made about the President, from "PT 109" to Oliver Stone's "JFK" plus every documentary ever cranked out in between. And, there's at least one new film in the works: Tom Hanks' production company is working on "Parkland", based on Vincent Bugliosi's exhaustive dissection of the assassination.
As an amateur student of the assassination, I highly recommend it. I also suggest that, if you want to finish it by November 22nd of next year that you start reading NOW. It's a girthy tome, to say the least.
As is the case with all of history, time takes away many of the key players who made things happen, who witnessed seminal events that shaped our nation. So it goes with JFK. Many of the folks in Dealey Plaza that day are gone, as are those who shared in the tragedy or who reported it to the country. A few remain, and their observations this time around could be their final in-person opportunities to re-tell their tales. To some, it may be tiresome, or just plain too sad. To me, it's another chance to hear from those who were there about a moment in time that shaped where we are today, even a half-century after the fact.
To me, it's going to be a fascinating year.