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Letter: Chilling Memory of a Tragic Day

To the Editor:

Thank you for your coverage this week regarding the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. The reflections of those who recalled the day, published in the Nov. 17 Sunday Valley News, were especially touching.

On the day of the assassination, I was a little over 1-year-old, so I have no memories of this tragic event. I’ve learned through history, however, of the importance of JFK as our president and the work that he did in service to our country. I’ve also known many people influenced by his work and am fully aware of the inspiration he provided to a generation of Americans.

Of all the reflections published in the paper, two added a new perspective for me about that terrible day in history. Birdi and Sheila Kaplow (I’m assuming mother and daughter) spoke of their experience on that day while living in Virginia. Birdi, a second-grader at the time, was informed of the shooting while riding home on the school bus. The other children on the bus cheered when they heard the news. For me, the reaction of these children, adds a new horrific dimension to this tragic event. How could anyone cheer the news of JFK being assassinated? What were these children taught to believe? Let’s hope they didn’t grow into adults who spread hate and disrespect. I would like to think that they now recognize that their reaction was wrong.

Christopher Kimmey