From my birth in 1917 I was seemingly destined for a political career. I am John Fitzgerald Kennedy, and my middle name of Fitzgerald would serve to remind the voters of Boston and Massachusetts of my maternal grandfather, Honey Fitz Fitzgerald, a beloved former mayor of Boston. During World War II I pulled all the political strings my wealthy family possessed in an effort to be sent to the fighting, for I knew that after the war I would be a more viable candidate as a combat veteran.
Virtually all of my early life revolved around politics, and both my older brother and I understood we were meant for high office. My father, Joseph P. Kennedy often said that his son would be America’s first Catholic president. He would prove to be prophetic.
After the war, in 1946, I conducted my first campaign for congress (jfk library n.d.), enlisting the help of my sisters, my mother and my popular grandfather, going door-to-door on crutches as I recovered from my war wounds. I was elected on my first try.
My goal from the beginning was the presidency of the United States and I used my family’s money and political connections toward that end. I first had to have a national platform and I chose to seek a seat in the U.S. Senate. I was elected in 1953 and immediately began my assault on the next obstacle. In 1956 I broke a tradition of the Democratic Party by actively seeking the nomination for vice-present on the ticket headed by Adlai Stevenson (White House.gov n.d.).
My brother Robert once joked that that I have been saved from that mistake by being denied the nomination, as Stevenson lost to the sitting president, Dwight Eisenhower, in a landslide. Still this honed my political skills and allowed me to build a national base for my assault on the presidential nomination in four years.
In 1960 I was elected 35th president of the United States in the closest election ever conducted, narrowly beating out the sitting vice-president, Richard Nixon (ibid).
On November 22 of 1963 I made an ill-fated trip to Texas to mend some political fences within the party. I over-rode the advice of my security detail, which wanted me to ride in a limo with a bulletproof canopy. I wanted the crowd to have a better view of my wife and me as we drove past them on the narrow streets of Dallas on a beautiful sunny day. As we were clear of the downtown canyon shots rang out and I was assassinated as my wife and a cheering crowd looked on in horror. I was the youngest man ever elected president and the youngest man to die in office.
John F. Kennedy Library and Museum Biographies and Profiles: Kenneth
P. O’Donnell Retrieved 3-2-08 from:
The White House John Kennedy Retrieved 3-2-08 from: