This Wednesday, November 22nd marks the 60th anniversary of the assassination of U.S. president John F. Kennedy. Sixty is a big number, moving the motorcade murder well beyond the first-hand memory range of most people on earth.

I was just six at the time, but I sure remember it. I can still see the teacher at my Grade school, Miss Holland, wheeling a boxy, black and white TV high up on a tubular chrome stand and tuning it to the CBS Buffalo, NY affiliate. New Anchor Walter Cronkite was mopping his brow, noting the official time of 1 p.m. Eastern, and confirming that Kennedy was pronounced dead at Dallas’ Parkland hospital.

With Kennedy being the first Catholic president, Our Lady of Peace elementary in Etobicoke, Ont., had his portrait on display in the hallway. With no portrait of Canada’s prime minister Lester B. Pearson in sight, most of us kids assumed our leader had been shot.

Kennedy’s appeal back then knew no borders. He was 35 years younger than current U.S. president Joe Biden, full of vigor, and admired where ever he traveled outside of America. At this point, while the Cold War kept us in duck and cover mode, Vietnam was a place where advisors had been sent. The space race was the best distraction ever, even to kids thanks to shows such as WKBW’s Rocketship 7.

On November 22, however, you could — even at six — feel the sadness everywhere. In “bugle” editions of The Star and Telegram, Kennedy’s face filled every paper box in Toronto. My mom met me halfway home at Six Points Plaza and there were tears in her eyes.

For those who remember, and for others who are interested, you can still find Kennedy remembrances and conspiracy theory documentaries on TV today. Here is a list of recommendations:


JFK: One Day in America (Nat Geo; Fubo; Stack TV). This three episode, documentary miniseries goes beyond the usual suspects for eye-witness accounts. One who has never been interviewed on camera before is Peggy Simpson, the only female AP reporter on the scene. She was there when Lee Harvey Oswald was shot.

Kennedy (History Channel; Stack TV). This 2023, eight-part documentary series, narrated by Ken Burns’ favourite Peter Coyote, examines Kennedy throughout his life. Includes interviews with Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Conan O’Brien, and a Canadian actor who has played Kennedy, Bruce Greenwood. From director/composer Ashton Gleckman.

JFK (Prime Video). You can’t do a Kennedy assassination list without Oliver Stone. The director’s 1991 movie is packed with as many conspiracy theories as there are costars, including a couple of Canadians, John Candy and Donald Sutherland. Kevin Costner holds it together as New Orleans district attorney Jim Garrison.

Cold Case JFK (Apple TV). A team of scientists and pathologists use modern methods such as ballistics testing and laser scanners to take a clear-eyed look at the evidence, Includes an examination of X-rays of Kennedy found in the National Archives.

JFK Revisited: Through the Looking Glass (Paramount+; Crave). Oliver Stone returned to the scene of the crime — Dealey Plaza, with its grassy knoll and book depository — for this 2021 documentary about the assassination.

JFK Assassination: The Roger Craig Story (YouTube). Never heard of Roger Craig? This 20-minute, 2016 documentary introduces the Dallas Deputy Sheriff, who, on Nov. 22, 1963, was asked not to take part in the security detail for the presidential motorcade. Was his testimony later altered by the Warren Commission?

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