President John F. Kennedy - People Throughout History

Wax figure of popular US President John F. Kennedy. Editorial credit: 360b /
Wax figure of popular US President John F. Kennedy. Editorial credit: 360b /

John F. Kennedy, known to many by his initials J.F.K., is one of the past presidents in the history of the USA to fall victim to an assassination attempt. JFK served as the 35th President of the United States of America from January 20, 1961 until his assassination on November 22, 1963. President Kennedy was killed at age 46 by Lee Harvey Oswald during a visit to Dallas, Texas. Lyndon B. Johnson succeeded him as president.

Early Life

On May 27th, 1917, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was born to Joseph and Rose Kennedy. Kennedy’s grandparents were children of Irish immigrants. Kennedy was schooled in New York and Massachusetts, although his schooling was interrupted on some occasions due to ailments. Eventually, he made it to Harvard.

During his time there, he had traveled to Europe before the outbreak of World War II. Kennedy wrote a thesis paper on appeasement in Munich. Though his father was later dismissed as the US ambassador to England, Kennedy managed to graduate with honors from Harvard University.

Kennedy’s chronic back problems didn’t allow him to make the cut in the army. But the navy enlisted him after spending months of exercising to straighten his back. Kennedy got assigned duty in Panama and in the Pacific theatre after months of training.

During a patrol, a Japanese boat rammed into them and Kennedy suffered another back injury. The Navy honored him for his act of rescuing an injured comrade despite his injury. However, Kennedy was released from active duty in 1945 as a lieutenant, and he continued to worked as a correspondent for Hearst Newspapers.

Political career

With his father’s backing, JFK managed to be elected into the house of representatives of Massachusetts. Kennedy won with 73% of the vote despite the Republican Party taking control of the house. Kennedy served for six years.

In 1952, he was elected to the United States Senate. Kennedy’s recurring back problems saw him miss some senate meetings. Catholic rites were performed on him at his hospital bed whenever his condition worsened. Kennedy managed to get reelected in 1958, winning by a big margin, and he began to consider running for President in 1960.

When Senator Kennedy did run for Presidency, he faced obstacles in his ambition. Kennedy was a Catholic and his religion was put in focus as there was an anti-Catholic attitude among the voters. Despite this, his youth and charisma played a role in his election to be. The victory was well deserved. Senator Kennedy won despite the electors in Alabama and Mississippi refusing to vote for him over his support for the civil rights movement.

Highlights of his Presidency

The Cuban missile crisis was one of his confrontations with the Soviet Union. The crisis nearly brought the US to nuclear war. The Naval quarantine of Cuba forced the Soviets to dismantle their missile sites in Cuba and it won him approval in the American public.

The Cuban exiles who had invaded Cuba were denied air support and they were overpowered by the Cuban forces. President Kennedy was forced to negotiate for the release of the captured soldiers.

President John Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas where he went to resolve frictions in the Democratic Party. President Kennedy was accorded a state burial at Arlington.


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