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Courtesy: WSU Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
Bill Moos Remembers Nov. 22, 1963
Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 11/17/2013
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John F. Kennedy visited the Washington State University campus as a presidential candidate, Feb. 11, 1960.

Pictured above is Senator Kennedy arriving at Bryan Hall, where he gave a speech and answered questions afterward. A recount of that day is given in the Daily Evergreen issue published the Tuesday after the assassination.

On Nov, 22, 1963, nearly four years after Kennedy's visit, Director of Athletics Bill Moos was 12 years old and in the sixth grade at small Edwall Grade School in Lincoln County.

"I remember vividly that day," said Moos. "The entire school gathered at the back steps of the school. There may have been 60 kids."

It was there the principal delivered the news of President Kennedy's assassination.

After a moment of silence, the principal asked Moos and one of his classmates to lower the flag to half mast.

Moos remembers that his parents were en route to Seattle to see Saturday's Apple Cup and he was staying with his aunt and uncle.

"I stayed with them through the funeral," Moos remembers.

"Very vivid," Moos says of his memories of that weekend. "John John saluting, Walter Cronkite weeping when he announced the President was dead, the horse pulled carriage with the flag-draped coffin, the boots backwards on the riderless horse."

While Director of Athletics at Oregon, Moos visited Dealey Plaza with his family when the Ducks were playing at the Cotton Bowl.

"It’s pretty sobering," Moos says of the experience.

When the Cougar teams are on the road in competition, Moos encourages to make the trip about more than an athletic competition.

"When we are traveling I urge the coaches to go out and take the student-athletes to see history," Moos says.

And what does Moos believe the meaning of the 50th anniversary of the JFK assassination have for the current generation?

"We need to pause and reflect on these types of events, many of them tragedies, that made our country stronger and brought us closer together," he says.

"It was a turbulent time in our country's history that we were able to overcome and adjust our focus," Moos says of the JFK assassination. "My hope is that it continues to serve as a foundation of which to grow through the generations that will follow us, and as we go through the generations, never forgetting what happened 50 years ago in Dallas."

By Jason Krump

Washington State Cougars Athletics