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Remembering JFK’s Memory At Chicago High School

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John F. Kennedy High School in Chicago. (CBS)

John F. Kennedy High School in Chicago. (CBS)

CHICAGO (CBS) — Where were you when President Kennedy was shot?

According to the U-S Census Bureau, it’s a question more than 70 percent of us can’t answer because we were either too young to remember or not born yet.

But there’s a Chicago school where JFK’s memory lives strong, not only today, but every day.

At John Fitzgerald Kennedy High School, students are greeted by President Kennedy’s face and words every day.

And on Friday, those words echoed through the hallways and classrooms.

Rather than focus on Kennedy’s assassination, lessons highlighted his accomplishments.

“He’s considered to be one of the greatest of all time,” said 16-year-old student Mary Lotesto

“How he acted in the Cuban Missile Crisis. How he kept a very cool head, and actually fought for Americans, for civil rights.”

At 1 p.m., the school paused for a moment of silence after a recording of Walter Cronkite’s 1963 announcement of Kennedy’s death was played.

That recording brought back memories for some faculty who remember hearing it the day it happened.

“My classmates and myself, we started crying because John F. Kennedy was so revered by the Catholic population,” said teacher Carolanne Peterman.

“It’s kind of like 9-11, when you didn’t know these people who died or who got hurt, but you felt that loss inside of you.”

When ground was broken on Kennedy High School in October of 19-63, it was originally going to be named Kinzie High School.

The following month, Kennedy was assassinated, and the school was renamed in honor of him.