Kennedy assassination nears 50th anniversary

The Kennedy assassination took place 48 years ago today

WRITTEN BY: Janelle Vreeland
Still from Zapruder film of Kennedy assassination
Image Source: Abraham Zapruder/Wikimedia Commons
Still from Zapruder film of Kennedy assassination

Today marks the 48th anniversary of the Kennedy assassination and a special hosted by Peter Jennings will air tonight, examining the assassination.

The LA Times spoke with Darwin Payne, 74, a reporter who covered the Kennedy assassination the day it took place. Running to Dealey Plaza, Payne began gathering details of what had transpired.

“It was total bedlam already — people crying, police surrounding the place, looking for the assassin," Payne said. “I started interviewing people, looking for witnesses.”

Payne interviewed two women who worked for Abraham Zapruder, the man who caught the Kennedy assassination on film. Payne tried to get him to negotiate with his publisher, but Zapruder only wanted to hand the film over to the FBI.

“I was, in effect, writing for history,” Payne said, reflecting on his role in covering the Kennedy assassination.

The History Channel will mark the anniversary of the Kennedy assassination with a special hosted by Peter Jennings, entitled "The Kennedy Assassination: Beyond Conspiracy." You can catch the special at 8 p.m. tonight.

Read more about Payne's account of the Kennedy assassination here.

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