Dallas Marks Half Century Since JFK Assassination

In Switch, City Holds Commemoration of Darkest Day

getty images

By Reuters

Published November 21, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

(page 2 of 2)

The 8-foot (2.4-meter) bronze sculpture of Kennedy, the centerpiece of the tribute, is located in downtown Fort Worth at the spot where the president delivered his last public address. Thousands waited in the rain on Nov. 22, 1963, to catch a glimpse of him and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy.

Kennedy then went inside the Hotel Texas, now a Hilton, where he delivered his final speech at a Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce breakfast before his motorcade departed for the trip to Dallas.

Fort Worth leaders had originally recognized Kennedy’s visit by renaming the theater in the nearby Tarrant County Convention Center for him. But when the theater was torn down in 2000 to make way for expansion of convention space, a community initiative began to create a new tribute.

Lawrence Ludtke of Houston, who is now deceased, was commissioned to design the sculpture, but the undertaking stalled after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington, Taft said.

A few years ago, the city made the tribute a top priority again, and Taft enlisted the help of Fort Worth patrons to raise $2 million to complete the bronze work of Ludtke’s clay model.

“The focus of what we have done is completely different than the focus in Dallas because of the death,” said Taylor Gandy, one of the Fort Worth patrons. “Ours is a celebration of Kennedy’s life and the activities of his last day. It is two different stories told from two different perspectives.”

Fort Worth’s memorial also contains a wall of photographs from the president’s last visit and audio links to his last two speeches.

Dallas and Fort Worth officials are expecting the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination to draw thousands of additional visitors to the significant sites throughout the year and especially around Nov. 22.

The Sixth Floor Museum is one of the city’s top destinations. Located in Dallas’ Dealey Plaza National Historic Landmark District, it chronicles the assassination and the legacy of Kennedy.

“We normally get about 320,000 visitors a year but in the next year, we’re expecting about 350,000,” said Carol Murray, a spokeswoman for the private, nonprofit exhibit. “There continues to be a lot of interest from both older people who remember the assassination, as well as younger people whose imaginations have been captured by the Kennedy legacy.”


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • Professor Dan Markel, 41 years old, was found shot and killed in his Tallahassee home on Friday. Jay Michaelson can't explain the death, just grieve for it.
  • Employees complained that the food they received to end the daily fast during the holy month of Ramadan was not enough (no non-kosher food is allowed in the plant). The next day, they were dismissed.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.