Longtime Channel 2 anchor John Pruitt remembers assassination of JFK

by: Dave Huddleston Updated:

Loading

ATLANTA - Longtime Channel 2 Action News anchor John Pruitt remembers the day President John Kennedy was assassinated.

He told Channel 2's Dave Huddleston he was a senior at Davidson College.

"I was studying and we didn't have televisions in the rooms in those days, and we didn't have cellphones. I didn't have my radio on," Pruitt said.


Pruitt said four hours passed before a friend told him about the tragic news.

"And he turned to me and said, 'Boy, that was really bad about Kennedy, wasn't it?' And I said, 'What are you talking about?' and he said, 'He's dead'. It just hit me like a ton of bricks. I mean, it was shattering. The only thing I can compare it to that people today could relate to is 9/11," he said.

Pruitt said for the next couple of days students were glued to their television sets, learning what they could about the president's death. He said he and three friends decided to drive eight hours to Washington D.C. for the state funeral.

"I saw the lines of people coming out of the Capitol down the street, seemingly endless lines of people in the pre-dawn darkness. We saw the family – the widowed Jacqueline, her two children. It was overpowering. The crowd was quiet, and there were hundreds of thousands of people," he said.

Pruitt said there was something about being there in Washington that had an influence on him one day becoming a news reporter.

"I do think being there and witnessing momentous historic events influenced me to consider journalism, and sure enough, I became a journalist. Nothing could equal that day in Washington," he said.