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At 12:30 p.m., Central Standard Time, CST, a car turned slowly into the plaza. A woman turned to face the man sitting behind her in the rear seat of the car. His face, lit with brightness, shone as he acknowledged her comment. Two men, the one in the back seat and one who sat next to the woman who spoke, abruptly turned their heads looking to the left and then to the right. The sound of a firecracker or backfire of a car's exhaust caught their attention. The man in the front seat, pleading disbelief, turned to look back at the other gentleman.
As the man in the rear seat raised his right arm to wave, a shot entered his back, pierced his neck and fled his throat. With hands clenched tightly, he raised them to his neck and tilted forward as another woman, who was sitting next to him, wrapped arms of concern around him. The man in the front seat yelled out that they were all going to be killed as the same bullet opened holes in his back, chest, right wrist and left thigh. The woman next to him pushed his gaping chest wound against her lap...saving his life. A third shot repeated. A fist-size hole erupted from the right side of the head of the male in the back seat. Blood and brain tissue splattered the interior of the car like molten lava spewing from a volcano.
The woman next to him wailed that she held his brain in her hand and climbed onto the back of the car. Later, she had no recollection of doing so, she just remembered reaching for something. A piece of the skull perhaps? Another man walking near the car, pushed her back into her seat and jumped in as the car speed toward the hospital. The staff at the trauma room proclaimed the condition of the man in the rear seat "moribund," meaning he had no chance for survival. The man's personal physician was called and he determined that the head wound was the cause of death. At 1:00 p.m., CST, after all heart activity ceased and last rites were given by a priest, the doctor signed the death certificate.
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The day was Friday, November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas. The thirty fifth president of the United States, John F. Kennedy, was mortally wounded while riding with his wife, Jacqueline, in a Presidential motorcade. She had been seated next to him in the back seat of the limousine. The couple in the front seat were Texas Governor John Connally and his wife. The last words President Kennedy heard from the rear seat of his limousine spoken by Nellie Connally, the First Lady of Texas, lit and brightened his face. She said, "Mr. President, you can't say that Dallas doesn't love you."
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His life clock began ticking at 3:00 p.m. on May 29, 1917. It ceased when the last of three fired bullets stopped his pulse at 12:30 p.m. on that November day. Each one of us is a human clock with an unknown number of hours and unexpired, roll-over minutes enclosed in our case. We are geared to run to the end of our time. If you had a choice, would you choose to know when your clock will tick its last tock?