PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) — With the 50th anniversary of Pres. John F. Kennedy’s assassination approaching, many are talking about the late president.

That includes the producers at “48 Hours,” who have put together the special “As it Happened: John F. Kennedy 50 Years.”

Senior executive producer Susan Zirinsky talked to KDKA Radio’s Larry Richert to preview the special and talk about JFK.

Zirinsky says the date — Nov. 22 — is “an incredibly important anniversary,” because “the nation shared that moment the first time with Walter Cronkite.” 

She says the producers wanted to give the viewer the experience of watching the events unfold as they happened, as viewers across the nation did when it happened.

“We didn’t go to a lot of outside voices,” said Zirinsky.

She wants a whole new audience to experience the events that gripped a nation. In the special, Bob Schieffer calls it the beginning of live television.

Zirinsky says Schieffer, a young reporter for a  Ft. Worth, Texas newspaper got a call from Lee Harvey Oswald’s mother for a ride to Dallas. Schieffer calls it his first big scoop.

She also says it isn’t just about the assassination of JFK, but a change that came across the whole county.

“You really — the country experienced something very very powerful,” she said. “It really is a country losing its innocence.”

You can see the special, “As it Happened: John F. Kennedy 50 Years” on Saturday, Nov. 16 at 9 p.m. on KDKA-TV.

Listen to Zirinsky’s full interview here:

You can listen to the KDKA Morning News with Larry Richert and John Shumway every weekday from 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. on NewsRadio 1020 KDKA.

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