DALLAS, Nov. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The 50th Committee, consisting of 25 local civic leaders, in cooperation with the City of Dallas, announced today plans for a serious, understated and respectful public memorial in tribute to our nation's 35th president. "The 50th: Honoring the Memory of President John F. Kennedy" will take place at 12:25 p.m. on November 22, 2013 at Dealey Plaza in downtown Dallas, where the President was assassinated in 1963.
"This is an event to honor the remarkable life and legacy of the leadership of President John F. Kennedy," said Mayor Michael S. Rawlings, Honorary Chairman of "The 50th" committee. "His death forever changed our city, as well as the world. We want to mark this tragic day by remembering a great President with the sense of dignity and history he deserves."
The first designated event that Dallas as a city has ever held in Kennedy's memory, "The 50th" will be a concise and reflective observance, starting with the tolling of church bells throughout the city and a moment of silence. Renowned Presidential historian David McCullough will give special readings from JFK Presidential speeches.
President Kennedy – a U.S. Navy veteran – will be honored by the internationally-acclaimed, 73-member U.S. Naval Academy Men's Glee Club. Religious leaders will offer prayers and a benediction, and a military flyover will also take place. Michael A. Jenkins, president and managing director of Dallas Summer Musicals, is producing the memorial.
The memorial will be free and open to the public, with tickets distributed in a manner to be determined. Video screens will be placed in locations around downtown Dallas to ensure everyone can take part in the memorial. The event is being paid for by private donations raised by individuals and foundations.
President John F. Kennedy's death left an immeasurable impact on anyone old enough to remember the tragic events of Nov. 22, 1963. "The 50th" will also teach younger Americans about the President's legacy. On the day of the memorial, Dallas Independent School students will study Kennedy's life and how we as a community can give back to society the way he outlined in so many of his speeches.
"We want younger generations who don't have a firsthand memory of him to learn about his vision for 'a new frontier' and his important place in history," Mayor Rawlings said.
The committee organizing "The 50th" is made up of a broad cross-section of leaders from the Dallas business and philanthropic communities, including Mayor Rawlings and chairwoman Ruth Collins Altshuler, a longtime Dallas philanthropist and civic leader who planned the program and invited McCullough to speak.
"We're honored to have a historian of David McCullough's stature speak on this historic occasion," said Altshuler. "As the highly respected author of Presidential biographies, he's uniquely qualified to speak about the lasting legacy of our 35th commander in chief."
"This is a part of our history. The story of Dallas' growth and success can only be understood in the context of this unspeakable tragedy," said Mayor Rawlings. "It's important that the city of Dallas has a strong voice in remembering this very solemn day and honoring a great President who was a hero to so many people around the world."
For additional information please visit www.50thHonoringJohnFKennedy.com.
SOURCE JFK 50th Committee