Donna Boatwright was a young women working in downtown Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963, when she and her friends hurried to see the president’s motorcade pass through the city.
“We walked down to the corner to wait for the motorcade to come by,” Donna said. “We could see it coming. You could see the flags on the car. It was so exciting!”
It’s a story YNN anchor Todd Boatwright’s mother has told for years -- the day she saw President John F. Kennedy. She worked a couple of blocks from where the motorcade passed.
“Being as young as were then, the girls, we were more anxious to see the first lady,” Donna said. “She had on this beautiful magenta-colored suit.”
She still remembers exactly where she stood on the sidewalk to see the president pass.
“So we had a real good spot right here and it passed right by here, and he waved to us,” she said. “Of course everybody thought he was waving directly at them. It was so great to see them. How often do you get the see the president and first lady?
“When it was gone, the let-down you know. We drug ourselves back into the office. We thought we were going to do some work. By that time it was getting close to lunch time and the phone rang,” Donna said. “One of the girls picked the phone up and it was our CEO and he was saying that the president had been shot. And then we were just in shock. Some people were in tears and some were just in disbelief.”
Donna and her coworkers were sent home for the day.
“There were sirens of course and everything, then after that it just got deafening,” Donna said. “It was so quiet. It was like Dallas just stopped moving.
“The president was gone and the person who assassinated him was gone and the assassin was murdered himself, so that left no answers,” Donna said. “And I can’t believe it’s been 50 years. Just like yesterday. As you stand here, it seems like just like yesterday.”
We head back to Dallas as our series continues Monday. YNN's Karina Kling will take you to the home where a man was renting a room the day of the shooting. His name was Lee Harvey Oswald.