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Kennedy Remembered At Scene Of Famous Campaign Stop

Reported by: Send eMail Dan Matics
Web Producer: Heath Harrison
Reported: Nov. 21, 2013 6:15 PM EST
Updated: Nov. 21, 2013 10:34 PM EST

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JFK At Jim's
Eyewitness News Photo

Huntington , Cabell County , West Virginia

Friday will be the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's assassination.

During his campaign in 1960, West Virginia played a huge role in getting the Massachusetts senator nominated and elected. Many in Huntington still remember one of Kennedy's more famous stops in the Mountain State.

Kennedy made that stop at a very popular dinner. Eyewitness News caught up with one man who shook his hand that day and, more than five decades later, he's still filling up on a plate of spaghetti in a restaurant that is preserved in time.

Clyde Hutchinson has eaten a lot of spaghetti at Jim’s Steak and Spaghetti House in Huntington.

“I was a young person when I came in here," Hutchinson said.

He shook the hand of Kennedy when he made a campaign stop in Huntington in 1960.

The U.S. senator from Massachusetts popped into Jim’s for a cup of coffee with U.S. Rep. Ken Hechler and Cabell County Democratic Chair David Fox.

"It was very exciting," Hutchinson said.

“We still have the coffee pot from that day,” Jim’s manager Jimmie Carder said.

Carder said consistency is the main ingredient at Jim's. With that in mind, the very spot in which Kennedy sat has been preserved…frozen in time. It’s a part of the restaurant that has become a major attraction.

"We call it ‘the million dollar picture,’” Carder said. “That's how much it has meant to this restaurant. People will wait for 45 minutes to sit there!"

Carder, whose father, Jim Tweel, who died in 2005 at age 89, started Jim's, wasn't there for Kennedy's visit, but the restaurant has become a very special place for those who were.

"It’s really amazing that this would be here that long," Hutchinson said.

Related link: See Kennedy's 1960 WV primary debate at the WCHS studio here.




Friday will be the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's assassination.

During his campaign in 1960, West Virginia played a huge role in getting the Massachusetts senator nominated and elected. Many in Huntington still remember one of Kennedy's more famous stops in the Mountain State.

If you've ever been to Jim's Steak and Spaghetti House, you know consistency is the key.

The very booth Kennedy used it has been preserved, frozen in time, to 1960 where the then-senator sat in his stop on the campaign trail.

Most of the people who were there back then are not around today, said Kennedy’s visit was a quick stop for coffee with U.S. Rep. Ken Hechler and David Fox, who was a chairman for the Cabell County Democrats.

Managers said, around the time of the anniversary, many people request to sit in the booth.



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