How did you learn about President Kennedy's assassination 50 years ago?

November 17, 2013 

"I was in Chicago on Halstead Street getting ready to go into a tavern. I was with a friend. We were just shocked. We saw it on a television in the tavern. We didn't react at first. We were stunned. We couldn't believe it."

Charles Husman, 81

Belleville

retired cook from Chase Park Plaza

"I was at my house. I was home sick from school. I went to Cathdral then. It came on the news. President Kennedy has been shot. I was stunned. He was probably the greatest president we ever had, in my opinion. He helped the people. He was a people man."

Tony Ciaramitaro, 63

Belleville

retired sheet metal worker for McDonnell-Douglas

"I had just started high school at Belleville Township. I think they put it over the PA. When I heard, I cried. I was so happy we had a Catholic president. It was a very sorrowful day. It was probably one of the harder days of my life. I was so proud of what he was doing."

Ken Kronenberger, 65

Belleville

worked at Roesch Gammill foundry before becoming disabled

"I was a secretary at Brown Shoe in St. Louis. They came in and told us. We didn't believe it at first. We didn't think it could be true."

Sharon Kossman, 72

Swansea

retired bookkeeper and former business owner

"I was at the Naval Medical Center in Bethesda where they brought his body in. It was sad. I was stationed there in the Navy as a Corps Wave medic. I was off base when I heard. My jaw dropped. I thought I didn't hear it right. I had to get back on base. I didn't know if they were going to lock us down or not."

Sally Thomas, 70

Belleville

mother of three, grandmother of nine, great-grandmother of six

"I was in the Air Force stationed at Bentwaters Air Base (England). We lived in Thorpeness. I was by the sea with my wife and five children. We probably heard it in the morning on the TV. There's seven hours difference. It was terrible then. It still is. No matter what your party is, when they kill your president, it ain't right."

Ivan Woods, 79

Belleville

retired chief master sergeant

father of five, grandfather of nine and great-grandfather of 13

"I was in my kitchen. The TV was on. I just remember all the pictures. I said, 'What are they talking about?' I couldn't believe it. I was flabbergasted. My husband was there. The kids were sitting around the kitchen table."

Helen Sarmiento, 83

Swansea

former nurse at Christian Welfare Hospital and mother of six, grandmother of 15 and great-grandmother of 11

"I was getting ready to go to work. I worked for a utility company. I heard it on the radio. It was sad, but thank goodness for our forefathers who fixed up our constitution so that things didn't get out of hand. That was a plus. I went on to work. Everybody wanted to know what was going to happen. The big thing was, 'Who would do something like that?"

Ron Meyer, 77

Belleville

retired power plant worker

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