Nov. 22, 1963: Pat and I were living in Paris; Sperry Gyroscope Co. had sent him there on business. One night in November we were invited to a friend’s house for dinner. The door was opened by our host and his wife who looked very serious and said, “Have you heard the news.” They said Kennedy had been shot and that it happened in Texas. They invited us in to listen to the television for more information. Before long Kennedy was pronounced dead and we were a very sad little group. Pat and I decided we wanted to go down to the American embassy. We had to express our feelings somehow.

At the embassy the only lights on were on the second floor and there were people standing around outside not knowing what to do.

The next day the city was deserted. There were very few people on the streets and very little traffic. Store windows had tributes to Kennedy with little American flags and photographs. Jack Kennedy was loved by the French, as was his wife Jackie. The city stayed in mourning for several days, then slowly returned to its normal pace. Television carried extensive coverage of the funeral. It was several weeks before Paris seemed its normal self again.

— Isabel West