John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Powerful Essays
John Fitzgerald Kennedy

John Fitzgerald Kennedy 35th president of the United States, the youngest

person ever to be elected president. He was also the first Roman Catholic

president and the first president to be born in the 20th century.

Kennedy was assassinated before he completed his third year as president.

Therefore his achievements were limited. Nevertheless, his influence was

worldwide, and his handling of the Cuban Missile Crisis may have prevented

war. Young people especially liked him. No other president was so popular.

He brought to the presidency an awareness of the cultural and historical

traditions of the United States. Because Kennedy expressed the values of

20th-century America, his presidency was important beyond its political

achievements. John Kennedy was born in Brookline, Massachusetts. He was

the second of nine children.

Kennedy announced his candidacy early in 1960. By the time the Democratic

National Convention opened in July, he had won seven primary victories. His

most important had been in West Virginia, where he proved that a Roman

Catholic could win in a predominantly Protestant state.

When the convention opened, it appeared that Kennedy’s only serious

challenge for the nomination would come from the Senate majority leader,

Lyndon B. Johnson of Texas. However, Johnson was strong only among

Southern delegates. Kennedy won the nomination on the first ballot and then

persuaded Johnson to become his running mate.

Two weeks later the Republicans nominated Vice President Richard Nixon for

president and Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., who was ambassador to the United

Nations and whom Kennedy had defeated for the Senate in 1952, for vice

president. In the fast-paced campaign th...

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...approached an underpass, two shots were fired in rapid

succession. One bullet passed through the president’s neck and struck

Governor Connally in the back. The other bullet struck the president in the

head. Kennedy fell forward, and his car sped to Parkland Hospital. At 1:00

PM, he was pronounced dead. He had never regained consciousness.

Less than two hours after the shooting, aboard the presidential plane at

the Dallas airport, Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn in as the 36th president of

the United States.

That afternoon, Lee Harvey Oswald, who was employed in the warehouse, was

arrested in a Dallas movie theater and charged with the murder.

On November 24 the body of President Kennedy was carried on a horse-drawn

carriage from the White House to the Rotunda of the Capitol. Hundreds of

thousands of people filed past the coffin of the slain president.
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