If you are 60 or over, I can mention four events and there is a 95% likelihood you can tell me exactly where you were, what you were doing, and how you learned of the event.
November 22, 1963. The day JFK was shot. I was in Puerto Rico working alone on a boat. On the radio was a monotone announcing minute-by-minute movements of something. It was dull and uninteresting and tried other stations and got the same broadcast. Finally, they mentioned the assassination. Where were you?
January 28, 1986. The explosion of the shuttle, Challenger. I was in Fort Lauderdale, working from home. My wife, Carol, called to tell me. Where were you?
April 19, 1995. The Oklahoma City bombing. I had surgery almost at the exact moment of the bombing. I did not turn on a TV for two days. The bombing was the first thing I saw. Where were you?
September 11, 2001. The bombing of the World Trade Center. Michael Wiest called that morning and asked if I had turned on the TV yet. It was Tuesday, usually a slow day, at the Fall boat show. Not knowing what else to do with myself, I and a dozen or two other yacht brokers, went to the show. We spent most of the day watching the replay on TV. Where were you?
There are other events that rate lower than 95%. I mentioned this topic to a friend who said she remembers
August 16, 1977. The day Elvis’ died.
And now I recall
August 16, 1948. Richie Wilson called me on as soon as he heard Babe Ruth died.
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What a variety of memories we have. Early comments tell of memories of:
Feb, 3, 1959. Buddy Holly’s death
November 18, 1978. The Jonestown Massacre
November 27, 1978 Harvey Milk’s assassination
November 13, 1981. Assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II
December 12, 1980 John Lennon’s death
My friend Dave LaRoche who has a special talent for restoring reality when it begins to slip away, notes he remembers positive events
May 8, 1945 VE Day
August 14, 1945 VJ Day
July 21, 1969 Neil Armstrong’s walk on the moon
August 8, 1974 Nixon’s resignation
November 29, 2008. Obama’s election
July 29, 1929 you may remember as the day the stock market crashed. I remember it as my parents’ wedding day.