John Fitzgerald Kennedy – JFKJohn Fitzgerald Kennedy was born in Brookline, Massachusetts, on May 29, 1917, the second son of financier Joseph P. Kennedy, who served as ambassador to Great Britain during the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He graduated from Harvard University in 1940, winning note with the publication of Why England Slept, an expansion of his senior thesis on Britain’s lack of preparedness for World War II. His part in the war was distinguished by bravery. In August 1943, as commander of the U.S. Navy torpedo boat PT-109, he rescued several crewmen after a Japanese destroyer off the Solomon Islands rammed the boat. His heroic rescue of survivors of his crew won him the Navy and Marine Corps Medal as well as the Purple Heart. In 1953 He married Jacqueline Lee Bouvier, daughter of a wealthy Wall Street broker, they had two children Caroline & JFK JR. In 1946, and with the enthusiastic help of his brothers and sisters won the Democratic nomination to the House of Representatives in the eleventh district of Massachusetts.His mother and sisters organized teas at the homes of voters, while his father furnished campaign funds. He won the election and as Congressman voted for Truman’s welfare programs, including expanded social security benefits, aid to veterans, and old-age benefits. In 1952, Kennedy upset the veteran Republican Senator Henry Cabot Lodge by winning his seat in the US Senate. He and his family began working tirelessly for his presidential nomination as early as 1956. In 1956 Kennedy almost gained the Democratic nomination for Vice President, and four years later was a first-ballot nominee for President. Millions watched his four television debates with the Republican candidate and current Vice President, Richard M. Nixon. Winning by a narrow margin in the popular vote, Kennedy became the first Roman Catholic President.
His Inaugural address offered the memorable injunction: “Ask not what your country can do for you–ask what you can do for your country.” As President, he set out to redeem his campaign pledge to get America moving again. His economic programs launched the country on its longest sustained expansion since World War II; before his death, he laid plans for a massive assault on persisting pockets of privation and poverty. This plan was named the new frontier; his ideas were used for years to come. Ke…
… “of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth” The space program fascinates the American people. In the early 1960s whenever space flights were launched during school hours students would gather in gyms and auditoriums to watch the lift offs on television. The race to the moon continued through the 1960s. It is one of the nations single most expensive projects of the decade, costing $56 billion.
On November 22, at 12:30 PM CST, while riding in an open limousine through Dallas, Texas, Kennedy was shot in the head and neck by a sniper. He was rushed to Parkland Memorial Hospital, where efforts to revive him failed. A commission headed by Chief Justice Earl Warren concluded in September 1964 that the sole assassin was Lee Harvey Oswald, a former U.S. Marine. Oswald, who was captured hours after the assassination in a nearby theater, was himself killed two days later by Dallas nightclub owner Jack Ruby while being moved from the city to the county jail. The state funeral of President Kennedy was watched on television by millions around the world. He was buried in Arlington National Cemetery. To this day JFK is still considered one of the nations best presidents.