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Merrill Moore remembers Kennedy in 1963

By Paul Johnson,
Published On: Dec 24 2013 04:25:54 PM CST
Updated On: Nov 22 2013 08:35:57 PM CST

Legendary anchorman, Merrill Moore remembers Kennedy's assassination in 1963.


For many people in this region, Merrill Moore is the news.

The legendary anchorman spent almost 40 years in the chair, covering everything from the moon landing to Watergate until his retirement in 2000.

Moore says the assassination of John F. Kennedy in 1963 was one of the biggest stories he covered.

Moore was filming a story in Blountville when he heard the news about Kennedy. Returning to Bristol, he expected to be in the anchor chair, but instead the networks took over the airwaves.

Moore along with News Director, Walter Crockett and reporter, Evelyn Booher began collecting local stories for a special 30 minute show.

The show was built around 9th District Congressman, W. Pat Jennings who knew Kennedy. It aired the following weekend. "The three of us did it." said Moore. "Me, Walter Crockett and Evelyn Booher, we actually didn't get back to regular program till sometime Sunday."

Three years earlier, Moore had attended a press conference at Tri-Cities airport that featured then candidate, John F. Kennedy. Moore vividly remembers that Kennedy was one hour late for the press conference.

Moore never imagined that just three years later, Kennedy would be assassinated.