Before that afternoon 60 years ago, neither Sid Davis nor Julian Read could have expected what they’d be called upon to do – much less that they’d both be eyewitnesses to history.
Davis was a young radio reporter based in Washington, D.C. Read was on the other side of the journalistic fence, serving as press aide for Texas Gov. John Connally.
But they were both on a press bus in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963 – the day President John F. Kennedy was shot.
After 50 years of virtual silence, Austinite Julian Read opened up to KUT in 2013 about his experience that day.
After the chaos of the motorcade, where the press bus was just a few car lengths behind the president, Read rushed to Parkland Memorial Hospital. He was in search of the governor’s wife, Nellie Connally.
“I wanted to know what had happened, because I wanted to be able to talk to the press,” he said.
Davis was the Westinghouse radio pool reporter in Dallas that day. He traveled from the motorcade onto Air Force One, where he witnessed Lyndon Johnson’s presidential swearing-in ceremony. He said the iconic photo of that moment proved “the Constitution still lives, the Constitution works, and it showed the world the United States was not imperiled here.”
Hear more from Davis and Read in a special report, “One Day in Dallas,” in the audio player above. It originally aired on KUT on Nov. 22, 2013.