Rudford’s Remembers JFK

For Presidents’ Day 2022, we celebrate with a slice of history. This morning, my wife watched a local TV news story about the John F. Kennedy photo hanging on the outside wall of Rudford’s Restaurant. A high school student shot the portrait as the president’s motorcade passed by the diner on June 6, 1963. I don’t know which early morning news station, and no search results lead me to the source.

In response, Annie and I walked from University Heights to North Park to investigate—and, sure enough, the massively enlarged photo adorns side of the building along Kansas Street. Rudford’s faces El Cajon Blvd, which is where Kennedy rode past 59 years ago.

James Daigh, who was 16 when he snapped the iconic moment, gave usage permission to Rudford’s owner Jeff Kacha. I don’t know the terms of the agreement. Near as I can tell, the 6 x 12-foot enlargement made its debut about 10 years ago. But has it always been there? My wife and I are both surprised that we never noticed the thing before actually looking for it.

If my poor online sleuthing means anything, James used the East German-made Exacta 35mm SLR with 135mm lens to make the moment. I used German-made (no East or West) Leica Q2 to capture the Featured Image and companions. Vitals, aperture manually set for all: f/5.6, ISO 100, 1/400 sec, 28mm; 9:42 a.m. PST, today. The second is same and the last 1/250 sec at 9:41 a.m.