Owasso Man Recalls Watching JFK Motorcade In Dallas

Monday, November 18th 2013, 5:52 pm
By: Craig Day

Friday will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. So many can still tell you where they were when they heard the news.

An Owasso man was in Dallas 50 years ago, and saw the frantic rush of the President's motorcade as it raced to Parkland Hospital.

The witness to history 50 years ago this week, Henry Bodden was a young newlywed, working a new job in Dallas.

"Fifty years, it's just where did the time go," said Owasso resident Henry Bodden. 

He arranged his work schedule to catch a glimpse of President Kennedy's motorcade. 

"The Dallas newspapers had published the parade route in the Thursday papers, so everyone knew what the parade route would be," he said.

Like many along the route, Bodden had no idea the President had been shot, but he knew something terrible must have happened.

He was just two car lanes away as he witnessed history.

"Here comes the motorcade, just going 70, 80 miles an hour, and I saw a secret service agent clinging to the trunk of the car for dear life," he said.

Bodden isn't sure who took a photograph of that scene, but it's almost identical to what he remembers seeing November 22nd, 1963.

"That's about where I was, and that's how close I was; that's what I saw," said Henry Bodden, an Owasso resident who saw President John F. Kennedy's motorcade in Dallas on the day of the assassination.

Only later did Bodden and others find out President Kennedy had been killed.

"Walter Cronkite broke the news," he said.

Bodden has been interviewed by the Sixth Floor Museum to document his account of events that day. He plans to attend 50th anniversary events in Dallas this week, including meeting the man who was Jackie Kennedy's Secret Service agent that fateful day.

"I would say the Kennedy assassination behind World War II, World War I and the moon landing, that had to be one of the third or fourth biggest events of the 20th century," he said.

"It's unfathomable. It's hard to process it at that time."

Bodden says he reflects on that day every November 22nd, even more the past few years as we get closer to the 50th anniversary.