Cromey Online

The writings of author, therapist, and priest Robert Warren Cromey.

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Location: San Francisco, California, United States

Friday, November 22, 2013

50 YEARS AGO AND JFK

November 22, 2013

My timid secretary come into my office and said tightly, “The President has been shot.” That was fifty years ago today. We ran upstairs to the Bishops office. The Rt. Rev. James Albert Pike gathered his staff around him in his office and read the prayers for the dead from the Book of Common Prayer. I went to my office and watched the television coverage of the so sad events in Dallas. I felt a sinking in my stomach, and an ache.

I remembered that a few days earlier the Bishop handed me a note on White House stationery scrawled with President Kennedy’s signature. It was so illegible we weren’t sure whose signature it was. We laughed at the poor penmanship.

Going home later, Lillian and I told the girls about the President’s death. They were more interested in little girl things. I was glad. I watched television for much of the day. Ruby slaying Oswald added to the confusion and chaos that swelled around the nation.

I wondered if Lyndon Johnson wasn’t behind the assassination? I also became interested in the “who did it” theories.


A few days there was a memorial service for the dead President at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral, which was truly packed for the occasion. I was asked to narrate the service for a local radio station. I was honored to do so. I described the cathedral, the colors of the vestments flowers and some of the dignitaries who attended.

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