Over the past four weeks, I participated in Larry Sabato’s Coursera class, The Kennedy Half Century. Sabato’s class coordinated with the release of his new book of the same name, The Kennedy Half-Century: The Presidency, Assassination, and Lasting Legacy of John F. Kennedy. I’ve been a life long Kennedy Democrat, and as a history lover, always fascinated by the JFK presidency, his assassination and his legacy. Larry Sabato’s class was a fascinating look at Kennedy’s presidency, his assasination and his subsequent legacy that includes influencing every president since his death. If you are a Kennedy fan, I high recommend reading The Kennedy Half-Century.
Today marks the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assasination. Fifty years ago today, I had just turned 7, twelve days before JFK was killed. It was my eldest sister’s birthday. I remember being in school, 2nd grade and they sent us home early with no explanation. I got offf the bus, walked down the little county road we lived on, and walked into my parents house to find my mother and one of my sisters weeping in front of the TV. It is an image I have never forgotten.
Choking out the news amid the sobs, my mother told me, JFK as been killed.” We all wept. Growing up in Massachusetts the Kennedy’s were akin to our “royal” family. That day and the subsequent days after, as we watched the murder of Lee Harvey Oswald live on TV and then John F. Kennedy’s funeral, I knew at a young age that life had changed in our country. Those events shaped my life to develop an interest in politics and history.
Today is a day for remembrance… A day that we mark with solemn thought about a president who has influenced so many politicians and Americans since his death. May we never forget John F. Kennedy.
According to a new CNN/ORC International survey released today “90% of all Americans approve of how Kennedy handled his job as President. No other President of the last half century even comes close.”