The Kennedy Legacy

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JFK Eternal Flame to Burn in Ireland

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June 18, 2013

The John F. Kennedy Eternal Flame generated new light today. Part of the flame was taken by torch from the presidential memorial at his gravesite in Arlington National Cemetery and is being transported to New Ross, County Wexford, Ireland.

The flame will be placed at a memorial there in celebration of the 50th anniversary of President Kennedy’s visit to Ireland.

The transition of the flame took place at a ceremony this morning at Arlington. The ceremony began with a wreath-laying in honor of the 35th president of the United States.

The ceremony continued with both countries’ national anthems, with members of both countries’ militaries present.

The Kennedy family was represented by Rep. Joseph Kennedy III, D-Mass., who spoke on behalf of his great-uncle about how humbling the honor is for the family.

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"The story of the president’s trip to Ireland is the story of a young man returning home," he said of the June 27, 1963, visit. "It’s the story of a thousand welcomes and million tears."

Members from the Irish Embassy also spoke to illustrate the effect Kennedy has had on the Irish people.

Irish Minister of State Paul Kehoe called President Kennedy a voice of hope. “He was that embodiment of that hope … living proof that Irish people could do anything they set their minds to,” Kehoe said, adding that Kennedy arrived just when Ireland needed a source of encouragement.

The Kennedy Torch was lit from the eternal flame. The torch was passed down a line of representatives from the Irish Defense Forces, Special Olympics, U.S. Peace Corps and New Ross Town Council.

The flame will be transferred from the Kennedy Torch to the Kennedy Lamps for its journey across the Atlantic to County Wexford, which was not the only place where President Kennedy spoke in 1963. But it’s from where his great-grandfather emigrated in 1848.

The lamp will be dedicated at its new home Saturday.

(Source: abcnews.go.com)

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New Website Launched on 50th Anniversary of Landmark JFK Civil Rights Speech

"We are confronted primarily with a moral issue. It is as old as the scriptures and is as clear as the American Constitution."

 - John F. Kennedy, June 11, 1963

The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library is marking the 50th anniversary of President Kennedy’s landmark speech on civil rights with the launch of a  new microsite presenting the 1963 civil rights narrative through primary source materials drawn principally from the Kennedy Library archives. 



Hundreds of assets, most of which have never before been publicly displayed, are organized into seven events, including:

  • The right to vote in Mississippi
  • Project C 
  • The integration of the University of Alabama
  • President Kennedy’s televised address on civil rights
  • 1963 civil rights Legislation
  • The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom
  • The Bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church

Filed under JFK Jack Kennedy John F. Kennedy Civil Rights

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When we think of John F. Kennedy, he is without a hat, standing in the wind and weather. He was impatient of topcoats and hats, preferring to be exposed, and he was young enough and tough enough to enjoy the cold and the wind of those times…. It can be said of him, as of few men in a like position, that he did not fear the weather, and did not trim his sails, but instead challenged the wind itself, to improve its direction and to cause it to blow more softly and more kindly over the world and its people.
E. B. White

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Kennedys make rare visit to Dallas, say RFK questioned ‘lone gunman’ theory in JFK assassination



A rare public appearance in Dallas this weekend by relatives of President John F. Kennedy was filled with political discussion and personal reminiscences, with only occasional attention to the tragedy that has linked the family and city for 50 years.

In a round-table discussion Friday night in the Dallas Arts District, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., son of the president’s brother and attorney general, said his father publicly supported the official Warren Commission conclusion that the president was killed in Dealey Plaza by a lone gunman.

“In private, he was dismissive of it,” he said. “My father believed the Warren report was a shoddy piece of craftsmanship.”

Robert Kennedy Jr. and his sister, Rory, were guests of PBS talk-show host Charlie Rose, who interviewed them for an hour and a half on a sparsely decorated stage at the Winspear Opera House.

Robert Kennedy Jr. said his father was concerned enough about the accuracy of the Warren report that he asked Justice Department investigators to informally look into allegations that the accused assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, had received aid from the Mafia, the CIA or other organizations.

He said the staff members found phone lists linking Jack Ruby, Oswald’s assassin, to organized crime figures with ties to the CIA, convincing the elder Kennedy that there was something to the allegations.

The attorney general refrained from voicing his doubts in public, his son said, because he believed that with the issue of civil rights then gripping the country, “it was a distraction for him to make this a principal issue.”

Though talk about the aftermath of the assassination surfaced several times during the evening, most of the discussion centered on life in the Kennedy family.

Robert Kennedy Jr., 58, an environmentalist and lawyer, is the third of Ethel and Robert Kennedy’s 11 children. Rory Kennedy, 44, is the youngest and an Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker.

Rory Kennedy said her father was shy but passionate about issues. Her uncle, the president, was more aloof, but the more comfortable with retail politics.

Despite the difference in personalities, she said, “it’s hard to imagine two brothers being closer.”

Much of the evening was lighthearted, with Robert Kennedy Jr. entertaining the audience with stories about growing up in the most famous family in America.

He told about a family party in which a borrowed elephant charged at Amy Carter, daughter of President Jimmy Carter, and how boxing champion Muhammad Ali tried a zip line on the property, only to collide with a blue spruce.

He also recalled that when he was 8 years old, he asked for a meeting with his uncle to discuss environmental issues.

The younger Kennedy entered the Oval Office with a salamander as a gift. The amphibian had died en route, but he presented it to the president anyway.

“I was in denial,” he said.

The president kept poking at the salamander, he recalled, announcing “he doesn’t look too well.”

“I had to admit there was a startling lack of animation,” Robert Kennedy Jr. recalled.

Other recollections were more sobering.

The president’s widow, Jacqueline Kennedy, spent much of the five years after his 1963 assassination outside the United States because she was shocked at the level of violence here.

The attorney general read books extensively during that period, his children said.

“He read the Greeks,” Robert Kennedy Jr. said. “He read the Catholic scholars, and he read the poets, Emerson and Keats, trying to figure out why a just God would allow injustice of this magnitude

Filed under JFK John F. Kennedy Kennedy

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So, let us not be blind to our differences—but let us also direct attention to our common interests and to the means by which those differences can be resolved. And if we cannot end now our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity. For, in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children’s future. And we are all mortal.
John F. Kennedy, American University, Washington DC, June 10, 1963

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Some new photos of Jack Kennedy Schlossberg, JFK’s grandson at the Kennedy Presidential Library. Sorry about the watermarks! On Sunday, October 14, the Kennedy Presidential Library hosted a major symposium that drew more than 300 visitors to hear historians, scholars, journalists, and descendants of world leaders reflect on the Cuban Missile Crisis. Sergei Khrushchev, Brown University Senior Fellow and son of Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, and Jack Schlossberg, President Kennedy’s grandson, and son of Caroline Kennedy and Edwin Schlossberg, met for the first time at the symposium, five decades after President Kennedy and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev began their precarious two week confrontation

Filed under john f. kennedy jack schlossberg john kennedy schlossberg