82 Facts About John F Kennedy

1. On September 2, 1963, John F Kennedy helped inaugurate network television's first half-hour nightly evening newscast according to an interview with CBS Evening News anchor Walter Cronkite.

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2. John F Kennedy is the only president to have predeceased a grandparent.

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3. John F Kennedy is the only president to have predeceased both his mother and father.

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4. John F Kennedy was posthumously awarded the Pacem in Terris Award.

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5. John F Kennedy was the first of six presidents to have served in the US Navy, and one of the enduring legacies of his administration was the creation in 1961 of another special forces command, the Navy SEALs, which Kennedy enthusiastically supported.

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6. John F Kennedy inspired affection and loyalty from the members of his team and his supporters.

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7. John F Kennedy was single in the 1940s when he had affairs with Danish journalist Inga Arvad and actress Gene Tierney.

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8. John F Kennedy suffered from chronic and severe back pain, for which he had surgery and was written up in the American Medical Association's Archives of Surgery.

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9. John F Kennedy met his future wife, Jacqueline Lee "Jackie" Bouvier, when he was a congressman.

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10. John F Kennedy was a life member of the National Rifle Association.

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11. John F Kennedy was greatly impressed by the Irish Cadets on his last official visit to Ireland, so much so that Jackie Kennedy requested the Irish Army to be the honor guard at her husband's funeral.

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12. On March 14, 1967, John F Kennedy's remains were disinterred and moved only a few feet away to a permanent burial plot and memorial.

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13. John F Kennedy was in Texas on a political trip to smooth over frictions in the Democratic Party between liberals Ralph Yarborough and Don Yarborough and conservative John Connally.

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14. John F Kennedy now became eager for the US to take the lead in the Space Race, for reasons of national security and prestige.

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15. John F Kennedy expressed concern about the plight of the Seneca, and directed government agencies to assist in obtaining more land, damages, and assistance to help mitigate their displacement.

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16. John F Kennedy watched King's speech on TV and was very impressed.

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17. On June 11, 1963, President John F Kennedy intervened when Alabama Governor George Wallace blocked the doorway to the University of Alabama to stop two African American students, Vivian Malone and James Hood, from attending.

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18. On November 20, 1962, John F Kennedy signed Executive Order 11063, which prohibited racial discrimination in federally supported housing or "related facilities".

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19. On March 6, 1961, John F Kennedy signed Executive Order 10925, which required government contractors to "take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed and that employees are treated during employment without regard to their race, creed, color, or national origin.

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20. John F Kennedy assigned federal marshals to protect the Freedom Riders rather than using federal troops or uncooperative FBI agents.

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21. John F Kennedy was concerned with other issues in the early part of his administration, such as the Cold War, Bay of Pigs fiasco, and the situation in Southeast Asia.

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22. John F Kennedy promised an end to racial discrimination, although his agenda, which included the endorsement of the Voter Education Project in 1962, produced little progress in areas such as Mississippi, where the "VEP concluded that discrimination was so entrenched".

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23. The US Senate ratified this and John F Kennedy signed it into law in October 1963.

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24. John F Kennedy was the first foreign leader to address the Houses of the Oireachtas.

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25. John F Kennedy ended the arms embargo that the Eisenhower and Truman administrations had enforced on Israel.

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26. John F Kennedy reiterated the American commitment to Germany and criticized communism, and was met with an ecstatic response from a massive audience.

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27. John F Kennedy had signed National Security Action Memorandum 263, dated October 11, which ordered the withdrawal of 1,000 military personnel by year's end, and the bulk of them out by 1965.

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28. John F Kennedy instructed Lodge to offer covert assistance to the coup, excluding assassination.

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29. In late 1961, President John F Kennedy sent Roger Hilsman, then director of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, to assess the situation in Vietnam.

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30. John F Kennedy announced a change of policy from support to partnership with Diem to defeat of communism in South Vietnam.

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31. In March 1961, John F Kennedy voiced a change in policy from supporting a "free" Laos to a "neutral" Laos, indicating privately that Vietnam, and not Laos, should be deemed America's tripwire for communism's spread in the area.

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32. When President John F Kennedy took office, he privately instructed the CIA that any plan must include plausible deniability by the US His public position was in opposition.

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33. John F Kennedy worked closely with Puerto Rican Governor Luis Munoz Marin for the development of the Alliance of Progress, and began working towards Puerto Rico's autonomy.

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34. John F Kennedy faced a dilemma: if the US attacked the sites, it might lead to nuclear war with the USS.

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35. John F Kennedy took responsibility for the failure, saying, "We got a big kick in the leg and we deserved it.

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36. John F Kennedy approved the final invasion plan on April 4, 1961.

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37. John F Kennedy gave a speech at Saint Anselm College on May 5, 1960, regarding America's conduct in the emerging Cold War.

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38. John F Kennedy began intensive meetings on the Berlin issue, where Dean Acheson took the lead in recommending a military buildup alongside NATO allies.

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39. John F Kennedy made it clear that any treaty interfering with US access rights in West Berlin would be regarded as an act of war.

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40. John F Kennedy picked up on this in his speech in Paris, saying that he would be remembered as "the man who accompanied Jackie Kennedy to Paris.

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41. John F Kennedy started off on the wrong foot by reacting aggressively to a routine Khrushchev speech on Cold War confrontation in early 1961.

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42. John F Kennedy approved Defense Secretary Robert McNamara's controversial decision to award the contract for the F-111 TFX fighter-bomber to General Dynamics (the choice of the civilian Defense department) over Boeing (the choice of the military).

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43. John F Kennedy focused on immediate and specific issues facing the administration, and quickly voiced his impatience with pondering of deeper meanings.

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44. John F Kennedy selected a mixture of experienced and inexperienced people to serve in his cabinet.

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45. John F Kennedy was ready and willing to make the increased number of quick decisions required in such an environment.

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46. John F Kennedy brought to the White House a contrast in organization compared to the decision-making structure of former-General Eisenhower, and he wasted no time in scrapping Eisenhower's methods.

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47. John F Kennedy was sworn in as the 35th president at noon on January 20, 1961.

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48. John F Kennedy became the youngest person ever elected to the presidency, though Theodore Roosevelt was a year younger at 42 when he automatically assumed the office after William McKinley's assassination in 1901.

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49. John F Kennedy ignored the opposition of his brother, who wanted him to choose labor leader Walter Reuther, and other liberal supporters when he chose Johnson as his vice presidential nominee.

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50. John F Kennedy won the West Virginia primary, impressing many in the party, but at the start of the 1960 Democratic National Convention, it was unclear as to whether he would win the nomination.

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51. John F Kennedy traveled extensively to build his support among Democratic elites and voters.

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52. On January 2, 1960, John F Kennedy announced his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination.

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53. John F Kennedy finished second in the balloting, losing to Senator Estes Kefauver of Tennessee but receiving national exposure as a result.

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54. John F Kennedy supported public housing and opposed the Labor Management Relations Act of 1947, which restricted the power of labor unions.

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55. John F Kennedy concentrated his attention on international affairs, supporting the Truman Doctrine as the appropriate response to the emerging Cold War.

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56. John F Kennedy served in the House for six years, joining the influential Education and Labor Committee and the Veterans' Affairs Committee.

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57. On March 1, 1945, John F Kennedy retired from the Navy Reserve on physical disability and was honorably discharged with the full rank of lieutenant.

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58. John F Kennedy gathered around the wreckage his surviving ten crew members to vote on whether to "fight or surrender".

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59. John F Kennedy was commissioned an ensign on October 26, 1941, and joined the staff of the Office of Naval Intelligence in Washington, DC.

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60. John F Kennedy exercised for months to straighten his back.

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61. In 1940, John F Kennedy attempted to enter the army's Officer Candidate School, but was medically disqualified due to his chronic lower back problems.

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62. In early 1941, John F Kennedy left and helped his father write a memoir of his time as an American ambassador.

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63. In 1940, John F Kennedy completed his thesis, "Appeasement in Munich", about British participation in the Munich Agreement.

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64. John F Kennedy made the Dean's List in his junior year.

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65. When John F Kennedy was an upperclassman at Harvard, he began to take his studies more seriously and developed an interest in political philosophy.

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66. John F Kennedy was sent as his father's representative to help with arrangements for American survivors of the SS Athenia before flying back to the US from Foynes, Ireland, to Port Washington, New York, on his first transatlantic flight.

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67. In 1939, John F Kennedy toured Europe, the Soviet Union, the Balkans, and the Middle East in preparation for his Harvard senior honors thesis.

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68. In July 1937, John F Kennedy sailed to France—taking his convertible—and spent ten weeks driving through Europe with Billings.

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69. John F Kennedy sailed in the Star class and won the 1936 Nantucket Sound Star Championship.

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70. John F Kennedy was then hospitalized for observation at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston.

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71. John F Kennedy intended to study under Harold Laski at the London School of Economics, as his older brother had done.

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72. In September 1935, John F Kennedy made his first trip abroad when he traveled to London with his parents and his sister Kathleen.

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73. John F Kennedy spent his first years at Choate in his older brother's shadow, and compensated with rebellious behavior that attracted a coterie.

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74. In September 1931, John F Kennedy started attending Choate, a prestigious boarding school in Wallingford, Connecticut, for 9th through 12th grade.

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75. Young John F Kennedy attended the lower campus of Riverdale Country School, a private school for boys, from 5th to 7th grade.

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76. John F Kennedy's father's business had kept him away from the family for long stretches of time, and his ventures were concentrated on Wall Street and Hollywood.

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77. John F Kennedy was educated at the Edward Devotion School in Brookline, the Noble and Greenough Lower School in nearby Dedham, Massachusetts, and the Dexter School through the 4th grade.

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78. John F Kennedy lived in Brookline for the first ten years of his life and attended the local St Aidan's Church, where he was baptized on June 19, 1917.

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79. John F Kennedy continues to rank highly in historians' polls of US presidents and with the general public.

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80. John F Kennedy increased the number of American military advisers in South Vietnam by a factor of 18 over President Dwight D Eisenhower.

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81. John F Kennedy was elected to the US Senate and served as the junior Senator from Massachusetts from 1953 to 1960.

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82. John F Kennedy served at the height of the Cold War, and the majority of his presidency dealt with managing relations with the Soviet Union.

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