Mayes, Schieffer, Rather reflect on JFK assassination - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Doug Mayes, Bob Schieffer, and Dan Rather reflect on JFK assassination

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(AP Photo). FILE - In this Nov. 24, 1963 file photo, Jacqueline Kennedy kisses the casket of her husband, President John F. Kennedy. (AP Photo). FILE - In this Nov. 24, 1963 file photo, Jacqueline Kennedy kisses the casket of her husband, President John F. Kennedy.
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

Nov. 22, 2013 will mark 50 years since President John F. Kennedy was shot to death in front of thousands in Dallas, TX. Where were you on Nov. 22, 1963?

WBTV talked with three news legends who vividly remember covering the JFK assassination.

"What an emotional earthquake this was. An emotional earthquake for our country and around the world," said former CBS News anchor Dan Rather.

Rather was in Dallas when the shots rang out, and was on television a short time later.

"How threatened the country felt. It was a little like what happened much later in the wake of 9/11," he said.

Just a few miles away from Rather, a young newspaper reporter manned the phones at the Fort Worth Star Telegram.

"When this thing hit, we didn't know if it was the beginning of World War Three," said CBS News Anchor Bob Schieffer.

Today, Schieffer runs the show for political reporting in Washington, but he'll never forget a telephone call he answered just a few hours after the shooting.

A woman says," Is there anyone that can give me a ride to Dallas?" "I said well ma'am, we don't run a taxi service here and besides the president has been shot," he recalled.

Moments later, Schieffer discovered the woman was Marguerite Oswald, the mother of alleged gunman Lee Harvey Oswald.

After realizing who she was, Schieffer rushed to Oswald's home. He drove her to the police station to see the most wanted man on the planet.

"We were ushered into this holding room off the jail and standing there and I'm thinking, 'my heavens, if I don't get to interview this guy I'm going to hear what he talks to his mother about,'" he said.

Things changed quickly when an officer realized Schieffer was a reporter. Schieffer left the scene but had a scoop he'll never forget.

Back in Charlotte, former WBTV anchor Doug Mayes was in the newsroom when the shots range out in Dallas.

"I remember that as vividly as if it had happened yesterday," he said.

Mayes broke the news to millions of Carolinians over the air.

"It affected me emotionally because the president had been shot and killed and you wonder what's going to happen because we've never been through that in my lifetime," he said.

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