John F Kennedy Essay

Topics: John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, John F. Kennedy assassination Pages: 6 (1943 words) Published: January 23, 2011
John F Kennedy

John Fitzgerald Kennedy was one of the most influential people in history. Many people adored him because of his intelligence and his way with people. JFK was an Statesman and 35th U.S. president (1961-63), he was born on May 29, 1917, in Brookline, Massachusetts; the second of Joseph and Rose Kennedy's nine children. He attended Harvard University and graduated in 1940.  This led to some of his earlier political successes. From 1941-1945 he served in the United States Navy, during World War II. In 1946 he was elected to the United States House of Representatives. Then in 1952 he was elected to the United States Senate. On September 12, 1953 he was married to Jacqueline Lee Bouvier. Then in 1960 he was elected President of the United States. On November 22, 1963 he was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. Kennedy was the youngest man elected president of the United States.

Kennedy attended private elementary schools though out his childhood, including a year at Canterbury School in New Milford, Connecticut, and four years at Choate School in Wallingford, Connecticut. He spent the summer of 1935 studying at the London School of Economics. He was forced to leave Princeton University during his freshman year because of an attack of jaundice. In the fall of 1936 he enrolled at Harvard University, graduating in June 1940. When WWII came around Kennedy joined the army. During the War, he commanded a PT (torpedo) boat in the Pacific. On August 1, 1943, during a routine night patrol, a Japanese destroyer collided in the darkness with Kennedy's craft and the PT 109 was sunk. After the boat sunk, Kennedy, despite serious injuries, led the surviving crew through miles of hazardous waters. An island was spotted that could provided cover from Japanese planes. With no edible plants or water, Kennedy realized that he and the crew must move on. Once they made it to an island he attempted to search for rescue. After treading water for hours, the lieutenant was forced to admit no patrol boats were coming. He turned back for the island but was swept away by a powerful current. Kennedy collapsed on an island and slept. He recovered enough energy to return to the island and gathered the crew to move to another island in search of food. JFK was now desperate enough to seek help from natives on a Japanese controlled island. After making contact with the natives, Kennedy persuaded the natives to deliver a message written on the back of a coconut shell to allied forces.   

After the war, in 1945 Kennedy worked for several months as a reporter for the Hearst newspapers, covering a conference in San Francisco that established the United Nations. Kennedy in 1947 became a Democratic Congressman from Boston, and in 1952, successfully campaigned against Henry Cabot Lodge in Massachusetts to advance to the Senate. He married Jacqueline Bouvier on September 12, 1953, and the couple had two children, Caroline Bouvier (born 1957) and John Fitzgerald (born 1960). Another son, Patrick Bouvier, died shortly after birth in 1963. 

In 1956 while recuperating from back surgery, Kennedy wrote Profiles in Courage, a study of courageous political acts by eight United States senators, which won him a Pulitzer Prize. Kennedy campaigned for and nearly gained the Democratic nomination for vice president in 1956, and four years later was a first-ballot nominee for president. A young, handsome and personable candidate with a beautiful wife, Kennedy enjoyed the friendship and support of many high-profile Hollywood celebrities, who helped raise money for his campaign. Kennedy engaged in a series of television debates with the Republican candidate, Richard M. Nixon, which were seen by millions. After winning the presidency in 1960 by a narrow margin, Kennedy became the 35th president of the United States, the youngest president ever elected, and the first Roman Catholic president.   Also, no obvious civil rights legislation was signed by...
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