Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas, the site of a memorial that touched many Canadians today as they reflected on the events 50 years ago
Photo Credit: CBC

John F. Kennedy memories on the 50th anniversary

50 years ago today, flags flew at half-staff around the world as people absorbed the news that the President of the United States, John F. Kennedy, had been shot in Dallas, Texas.

Canada’s Minister of Finance, Jim Flaherty attended the memorial of Kennedy’s asasination at Dealey Plaza, in Dallas, Texas today. He remembers the shock as a 13 year-old, and described it as “life-changing”.  In an interview with CBC News Network, when asked what Kennedy’s greatest legacy was, Jim Flaherty said, “I think he created an atmosphere of opportunity and positivism, like we could all do this, and that made a big difference to our generation.”

Jim Flaherty, like most Canadians old enough to remember where they were when they heard the news, said he spent the next few days watching television in 1963.

In the years since, conspiracy theories grew as JFK’s reputation dimmed. But on this anniversary, with live coverage in Canada of the memorial event in Dallas today, people are reminded of the possibilities that seemed to end that day.

Colleen Curran is a Montreal playwright. She often finds comedy in the saddest places.  She was in third grade, around 8 years old, on November 22nd, 1963.  The Kennedy legacy has surfaced in her work over the years. Yesterday she staged a production called “JFK, Jackie & Me”.  It featured segments from some of her plays.

Carmel Kilkenny spoke with Colleen Curran about her memories and the reverent and irreverant ways in which the Kennedy’s, Jack and Jacquie, appear in her work.


“True Nature” is one of Colleen Curran’s most recent plays.  It’s based on the life of Mary Anning, the 19th century fossil hunter, and she is currently at work on a play called “Godot at the Coconut Grove” based on the true story of a doomed production of Waiting for Godot in Miami, Florida.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Economy, International, Politics, Society

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

For reasons beyond our control, and for an undetermined period of time, our comment section is now closed. However, our social networks remain open to your contributions.