Nightly News   |  November 22, 2013

When JFK died, ‘it took us in an entirely different direction’

NBC’s Tom Brokaw, who was a reporter in Omaha, Neb., when John F. Kennedy died, recounts that historic day.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> on november 22nd in 1963 tom brokaw was a young reporter in omaha. he read the news of the assassation on the air, in fact. he's with us from back home in new york tonight, and, tom, it was frank mcgee who said on nbc that day that for years to come, generations, people will ask where were you when you heard kennedy was assassinated which, of course, is both the title and theme of the two-hour documentary you e hosting for us tonight.

>> thank you, brian, and if i could just ride on the words of the great david mccullough , i think there was another element in all of this that helped us 50 years later remind each other about why we remember. he was the first president who came along when television was new and he was everywhere, in cities and towns, remote areas and when he was taken away this, dynamic man, it was a shock to the system becau they felt they knew him not just as a president but as a friend and we thought that jfk style would be around for a long time but it also died the daye was muered because he was replaced by london johnson who was a more traditional pol so the fickle finger of history moved on that day, and it took us in an entirely different direction than we anticipated when he began his motorcade in daas. it was a day that changed how we thought about life, brian.

>> tom, it felt very fresh here today 50 years later.