EDITORS NOTE: The following is an editorial written by former Managing Editor Franklin P. Little that appeared in the Advance-News Nov. 24, 1963, two days after President John F. Kennedys assassination.
Unbelievable, but true, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States, is dead. The United States and the entire world suffered its most tragic blow in many years Friday when the president was assassinated, obviously by some crack pot.
President Kennedy has left behind a stunned world, his wife and two lovely children. The Kennedy family must bear this tragic blow, only because the late president was a man of strong determination. The man who shot him must have had enormous hate for the president.
President Kennedy stood strong and tall in the face of the Cuban showdown with the Soviet Union. He was the first American president to face the possibility of nuclear war, and to risk it with a show of force to protect the freedom of the American people.
President Kennedy came out of the Cuban showdown looming as the strongest single leader in the Western world. His determination to risk war with Russia for the rights of the free world won him the support of all free people around the world.
Here at home, President Kennedys major problem was the civil rights situation. His determination to give all Americans equal rights made him a very controversial figure in the Southern states. The man who shot the president must have been pro-Communist or against his civil rights program.
The strength President Kennedy displayed during the Cuban crisis of 1962 obviously played a major role for him to succeed in achieving an accord with Russia limiting nuclear tests.
Mr. Kennedy served almost three years as the nations chief executive. He was a very active, enthusiastic president. Mr. Kennedy is another example of the price the American people must pay for freedom.
At the writing of this editorial, the search for the person who assassinated the president of the United States goes on. What penalty would pay for the life of President Kennedy? No earthly penalty!
Every man, woman and child who has his faculty of reason weeps with, and for, the Kennedy family.
What does Mrs. Kennedy tell Caroline? Your father felt so strong for freedom that he is gone forever. Or does she say, Caroline, your father, the man you worshipped, was shot to death in Dallas, Texas. The English language does not possess words that will soften the blow to the Kennedy children. They must grow up without a father. The presidents son is too young to understand.
The late John Fitzgerald Kennedy will go down in history. His children will grow up to read about him being the fourth president of the United States to be assassinated, because of his beliefs.
The world is helpless in this time of tragedy. Notes of sympathy continue to pour into Washington from world leaders. Religions of all denominations are offering services this weekend for the late president.
To preserve our freedom, we must join as one behind President Lyndon B. Johnson in this time of distress. The biggest tribute that can be paid anyone who has died in his or her fight for freedom is to continue this fight to preserve the freedom.
May his soul rest in peace.