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November 2, 2023
7:30 PM
Allen Public Library - Civic Auditorium
300 N. Allen Drive
Allen, TX 75013
Darwin Payne, Dallas Times Herald reporter circa 1963
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OnStage @ APL presents 1963: JFK killed, Darwin Payne reporting

Thursday, November 2, 2023

Darwin Payne, author of "Behind the Scenes: Covering the JFK Assassination," shares his story.

On November 22, 1963, Darwin Payne was working at his desk at the downtown Dallas Times Herald when the city editor declared, “Code 3, Dealey Plaza!” This led to the then twenty-six year old Darwin reporting on the most significant event of his career.  

Interviewing a group of young women who worked for Abraham Zapruder, they shared that their boss had been filming the presidential motorcade. Darwin was led to the offices of Jennifer Juniors, Inc., a clothing manufacturer co-founded by Zapruder, in the Dal-Tex Building at 501 Elm St. On an office filing cabinet there was the famed Bell & Howell Zoomatic 8-mm camera that recorded what is arguably the most famous footage in American history.  

Darwin interviewed detectives outside the School Book Depository as they transported evidence from the shooter’s location, including the rifle. He was also among a small number of journalists who were permitted to inspect the assassin’s sixth-floor window from where the fatal shots were thought to have been fired.

Darwin later earned a PhD from the University of Texas at Austin, taught journalism at SMU for thirty years, and is the author of numerous books, including Indomitable Sarah: The Life of Judge Sarah T. Hughes. 

Can’t be there in person? The program will be streamed live on ACTV. For online, cable channel, and streaming app options, view the Watch ACTV  page or use the live streaming link provided in the sidebar.

The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Call 214-509-4911 for additional information.  

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