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The story of John F. Kennedy

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   John F. Kennedy and His Words



               By: Kelly Tierney


   Table of Contents


Page 4:  Introduction

Page 4: Early Life

Page 5: Elementary School

Page 6: Middle School

Page 7: High School + College

Page 8: The Navy

Page 9: Brothers + House of Representatives

Page 10: The Senate + Marriage

Page 11: A Candidate for President

Page 12: And the Presdient is... + The Inauguraton

Page 13: The White House + Segregation

Page 14: The Protest +Fearful

Page 15: War + Peace Corps + Space

Page 16: Racism Ends + The Death + The Investigation

Page 17: The Suspect + The President's Funeral

Page 18: Conclusion

Page 19: Glossary

Page 20: Timeline

 Page 21: JFK Structures

On May 29,1917 Rose and Joseph Kennedy had their second child, his name was John Fitzgerald Kennedy. They were an Irish Catholic clan who lived in Brookline, Massachusetts. On February 20, 1920, John was not yet three years old, when he got a severely contagious disease called the scarlet fever. He suffered many symptoms.  These symptoms include: sore throats, rashes, measles, high temperature fevers and more. His father went straight to the hospital and was afraid that his son would die! When they arrived at the hospital it turned out that John had to stay there for a month! John’s father came everyday to sit by his son’s side to wait until he could get out of the hospital room, even though he had a really busy job. When John was released from the hospital he recovered a lot from this life threatening disease.


Early Life

John F. Kennedy was the thirty fifth U.S. president, he achieved many things in his life. He was the first president to reach for the moon as they say. He rescued all his men from a menacing attack by a war rival. And his assassination poured rain over everyone in the whole wide world. This is John F. Kennedy’s story.






Soon John began his education, by of course, going to school. Rose wanted her children to go to a private school mainly because she wanted the best education for her children. It wasn’t about the money, because the Kennedy were millionaires. Rose also felt that Joe and John ran around like wild maniacs, so the private school teachers would hopefully teach them about discipline. Very few Irish Catholics went to this school. Most of the kids were Protestant (Pra- test-ent ) noun.  Then John’s father started a school just for boys. His father didn’t want his son’s to get distracted by getting girlfriends. So he made the school just for boys.This school was called Dexter. The school was located in Brookline, Massachusetts, the town that the Kennedy family lived in.  When John was in Elementary School he moved twice.



 Elementary School




  • Now John started middle school. He moved again, but he moved to a divergent state. He moved to New York, the shopping industry. He went from the fifth grade through the seventh grade at Riverdale Country School. Next he switches schools and moves to another state.  The new state is Connecticut.  In eighth grade he went to Canterbury School. It was a Catholic Boarding School. John earned outstanding marks in English, Mathematics and History. Those were his strong subjects. But there was one subject that he failed in -  Latin. His ending mark was a fifty five. During the Spring of eighth grade, John had to get a surgical removal of his appendix.  He could’ve died from this procedure but the surgeons did it accurately. He was out from school for the rest of the school year so he could recover.


    Middle School 


     John entered Harvard in 1936.  In college he played football.  Unfortunately, while playing football he broke a disc in his spine.  This was an injury that impacted him the rest of his life, since he did not recover from this well.  In Harvard he behaved and got good grades.  He had brought his grades up a lot since high school.  John took pride in his good grades and work hard to keep them high.

  2. In 1935 he entered Choate.  John followed his older brother Joe’s footsteps by going to the same high school. Suddenly, John appeared in his older brother’s shadow on being a prankster.  John notoriously blew up a toilet seat, this earned himself and his friends a nickname, ‘’The Muckers’’ because him and his friends were very social and were partners in crime. His academic scores were all over the place. How about less chit chatting and more working. John played football in high school. He was a star at  playing football. Everyone admired his football skills. No one on his team took the risk  of being as good a player as him because they were scared.

    High School



    After John graduated college he wanted to join the U.S. Army. He was rejected by the Army because he injured his back while playing football in college. Months later he decided to join the U.S. Navy.  After the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, a Navy base that is located in Hawaii, the United States entered into World War 2.  John was shipped to the South Pacific Ocean to fight against Japan. In August 1943, Lieutenant Kennedy’s boat was sliced in half by a Japanese destroyer. Two people were killed. Lt. Kennedy and four other crew members managed to stay afloat on the half boat that remained. Six other crew members survived in nearby water, two were wounded. In a three hour life saving mission, he got the two wounded men to get on the half of the boat that still remained. When they capsized the boat, he insisted his men swim to a small island that was three miles away. He brought one of the wounded men to shore in a five hour heroic effort.   This was a great example of John Kennedy’s leadership and great perseverance  - he rescued his crew of men.

In 1937 John’s father moved to England and was chosen as the U.S. Ambassador. Their whole family travelled to England except for Joe and John who were still in Harvard.  After a short time it was summer vacation. Since his father dealt with so much politics and world conflicts, John came back to Harvard eager to learn, especially in his government classes.  John was a very well rounded Harvard man.  He had a great personality, was a amazing football player and was also a good student.

   The Navy

    The House of Representatives

  1. Joseph Kennedy Jr. was killed in action while piloting a plane during World War 2. This was a big blow for the Kennedy family because John’s father was hoping that Joseph Kennedy Jr. would be president of the United States someday. He wanted Joe to become president because he was strong and smart.





  1. In 1946 John became a candidate for the House of Representatives from Massachusetts. He had a large campaign for his political party. Whenever he travelled to different places in Massachusetts he would persuade people to vote for him. His brothers, sisters and mother supported him too. Robert his younger brother was the manager and his sisters and mother held public events so they could help raise money. The whole Kennedy family was supporting him. Even his father who was an Ambassador in England. Later on in the fall election of 1946, he won a spot in the  Massachusetts House of Representatives, and also won his reelection bids  in 1948 and 1950. He won his seat in the House of Representatives for three elections straight. People must’ve really liked him as a representative.




    The Senate

  • On a chilly spring day in 1952, Kennedy ran for a seat to be a U.S. Senator. He was running against Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. , a Republican. Surprisingly Kennedy won by over seventy thousand votes in total! People must have really liked his speeches, because seventy thousand votes is a lot!  Lodge should’ve known he didn’t  run against one man, he ran against a family.  The two years flew by and in 1958 they reelected Kennedy as a senator. While taking his seat in the Senate he was on ten unique committees. He also worked on handing several bills to different industries in Massachusetts. He was a very productive man and worked hard for the people he represented in Massachusetts.


     Senator Kennedy's political career was officially established at this time.  In 1953, after being elected as a senator he was thirty six years old. It was time.. he married the twenty four year old Jacqueline Bouvier. She was a writer for the Washington Times Herald. Before they got married they dated for two years.  When they got engaged, Kennedy gave her a 2.88 carat ring!  Aww, so romantic!  And finally, they got married. It occurred in Newport, Rhode Island on September 12, 1953. It took place in St. Mary’s Church where 750 people attended the Mass. That must be a huge church!  The wedding reception had 450 people in attendance. He must’ve been a famous senator.


  1.    On July 13, 1960 the Democratic Party chose John to run for president. John was really excited and asked Lyndon B. Johnson, a senator from Texas to run for vice president with him. Lyndon B. Johnson said Yes. So on November 8, 1960 a heart racing presidential election occurred. John F. Kennedy vs. Richard Nixon. A very close presidential race was happening the entire Election Day. Back and forth, one would be winning, then in the next ten minutes the other was winning. The final results were waiting to be announced to Americans all around the country.


   Unfortunately, in his early marriage John’s back needed another operation. Two operations were actually performed. While John was recuperating he wrote a book called ‘’Profiles in Courage”.  Profiles in Courage included eight U.S. Senators who showed great honor and bravery. This biography won a Pulitzer Prize in 1957. On November 27,1957 their first child, Caroline, was born. How lucky was he, a beautiful baby girl the same year he wrote his Pulitzer Prize winning book. Soon after, he felt healthier and he began to travel throughout the United States. This man was constantly moving he was like the Energizer Bunny.

    A Candidate For President

  2. President Kennedy was optimistic about being the youngest president elected and to be the first Catholic president ever in the United States.  Before the inauguration his second child John Jr. was born. At the age of 43 he was sworn in at his inauguration to be the thirty fifth president.  In John F. Kennedy’s speech he says, ‘’Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country,". He also wanted the nations to come together to fight things in the world such as, tyranny, disease and war itself.


    John F. Kennedy won!  He defeated Richard Nixon. The 3 immediate Kennedy family members with him were ecstatic and so were all the relatives that were home watching the political race on television. The crowds were euphoric with joy and happiness except for, Richard Nixon.  John F. Kennedy or now I shall say President Kennedy was overwhelmed with happiness. Just waiting to see the results makes you really nervous. The close race and winning wow!  This was probably  the best memory in his life.

    And the President Is...

    The Inauguration

     The White House

  3. The Kennedy’s made the White House a special place filled with amazing art, history items and many other innovative things. Jacqueline usually picked out the art and decorative things.  She let her husband chose the historic things, because she knew he loved history.  Jacqueline must’ve taken the lead though, as she was the most stylish First Lady in my opinion. She was known for her excellent taste in decorating and fashion. You can’t blame her taking the lead on decorating because her husband was the busiest man in America and had a thousand agenda items each day.  He could not fight for peace and still help with decorating the White House - You can’t do everything in one day!
  2. John F. Kennedy had many serious problems to deal with during his presidency. The biggest one was racial discrimination. This means that white people can leave black people out and the opposite. In 1954 they made a law about white and black people going to school together which was before Kennedy presidency.This law was heard and was supposed to be obeyed throughout the whole country. Some schools did not obey this law. The southern states especially did not obey this law. Also, they added that white and black people should be on the bus together too. Other places like movie theaters and public places, should also be integrated.




  1. However, the president had many fears. One of them was the Soviet Union having a Nuclear War with the United States. President Kennedy knew our two countries  were definitely not allies and were not kind to each other. The Soviet Union’s government and the United States government spent a ginormous amount of money on nuclear weapons. Then in 1962 a missile from Cuba, the Soviet Union’s ally, destructed the city of Berlin, Florida. The United States did nothing back in return. Since then Cuba and the United States were never friendly to each other. The Soviet Union’s government went bankrupt or fell apart so there’s no such thing as the Soviet Union anymore. Thank goodness the Soviet Union does not exist today. Phew!!!!


  3. Then in 1961 thousands of Americans, along with Civil Rights Leaders and the president gathered around Washington D.C. together. His brother, Robert, attorney general  People of all different cultures and backgrounds protested for justice. This was done peacefully. One of the civil right leaders was Martin Luther King Jr.  Many Civil Rights Leaders believed  President Kennedy wasn’t supportive enough to their efforts. The only reason why the President wasn’t that supportive was because he thought many white people would be angry. He wanted equal rights but he was just scared. He wanted all Americans to be happy with what he did. He did not want to be talked about in a bad way. No one does.

    The Protest


  1.    After the Cuban missile crisis, President Kennedy still had a lingering Vietnam war to deal with during his presidency.  As president he decided to send more military forces to Vietnam.  He actually tripled the the military forces that were involved in the battle.  This was all very controversial and gave him many sleepless nights wondering if he was doing the right thing.


  President Kennedy was excited to explore space. That’s right! Again the Soviet Union was ahead of the U.S. space program so he was determined to beat them before the decade. He said, ‘’No nation which expects to be the leader of other nations can expect to stay behind in this race for space." He was the first President to allow 22 billion dollars for Project Apollo. At the end of Project Apollo, the United States had beaten the Soviet Union space program.  President Kennedy was euphoric when that happened.

    Peace Corps


  1.   President Kennedy created the Peace Corps. Believe it or not it still exists today. The Peace Corps helps assist those in need and helps people understand American culture. The Peace Corp is still a respected organization throughout the world.The Peace Corps can help all people with educational work to constructional work. Other things they can help with include healthcare and farming. Wow! Genius!



  1. On June 11, 1963, he decided that he had to have a stronger action in the civil rights struggle.  He showed a Civil Rights bill to Congress and asked Americans to end racism on television. "One hundred years of delay have passed since President Lincoln freed the slaves, yet their heirs, their grandsons, are not fully free," he said. He wanted everyone to forget about someone’s skin color and just enjoy a happy life. And surely everyone was equal now. Businesses, stores and playgrounds were full of people with different skin colors. And most importantly, everyone was happy.  America is a free country to live in!


  On November 21, 1963, President Kennedy flew down to Texas to give many political speeches. The next day, his polished red car came rolling down a block filled with excited people hoping to see the handsome president.  Suddenly, gunfire went in all directions, unexpectedly. 1.2.3…… it took 3 bullet shots to wound the president badly.  Jacqueline was crying the whole time, completely worried about her husband  and wondering if he was going to die. They rushed to the hospital and finally they heard the sentence that no American wanted to hear ‘the president was dead’.

  1. The next day the police investigated and investigated. Until finally they narrowed down the search for a suspect.  Lee Harvey Oswald was 24 years old and lived in an apartment near where the president was shot. Marina Oswald didn’t see her husband for a few days because he ran away from her and didn’t talk to her since then. Marina’s husband, Lee,  wasn’t in the apartment when the investigators came in but she knew one secret. Her husband owned a rifle. She checked where he kept the rifle and there was nothing under the blanket…

    Racism Ends

     The Death

    The Investigation

  3. Lee Harvey Oswald was taken to the Dallas Police Station. The police now had a reason to arrest him.  When a police officer questioned Oswald for doing the shooting, Oswald killed the police officer and ran away. Thirty minutes after he killed the police officer, he hid in a movie theater where the police found him. He was going to be locked up in a jail cell for the rest of his life.  Two days later, Lee Harvey Oswald was taken into the basement of the Dallas Police Station. Camera people and the Press were coming to inspect everything that was happening in the Dallas Police Station. While Lee Harvey Oswald was strolling down the hallway of guilt, Jack Ruby, a nightclub operator,  killed Oswald.

    The Suspect

  1.   John Fitzgerald Kennedy’s funeral was held on November 25, 1963. His wake and funeral lasted for three days. The day he died, Friday, November 22,1963, his state funeral was held in Dallas,Texas. Thousands of Americans were crying, weeping and mourning for the loss of an absolute amazing president. His wife, Jacqueline Kennedy, lead the mourning for her husband. Then on Saturday, the body was taken and placed in the East Room in the White House for 24 hours. Then on Sunday, his flag draped coffin was taken to the country’s capital, Washington D.C., by horse chariot. Throughout the day people lined up to pray for President Kennedy. Then on Monday, his burial was held at the most famous cemetery in the country, the Arlington National Cemetery. Over 90 different countries, sent representatives to his funeral to give President Kennedy a good send-off. He was a great President may he rest in peace.

   The President's Funeral



John F. Kennedy helped everyone in America get through some bad things in the United States. He also made things competitive and exhilarating like the way he kept trying to get ahead of the Soviet Union’s space program. But  the sudden assassination of JFK was unforgettable. Even today Americans mourn on the day of his death. But President Kennedy’s legacy will go on forever and ever.








  1. Ambassador: And diplomat sent by a country as its representative to a foreign country.


2. Controversial: likely to say something to public disagreement.


3. Inauguration: the beginning or introduction of a system, policy, or period.


4. Integrated: desegregated


5. Lieutenant: a naval officer of a high rank, in particular a officer in the US Navy or Coast Guard ranking above lieutenant junior grade and below lieutenant commander.


6. Nightclub Operator: An establishment that stays open late at night and provides food, drink, entertainment, and music for dancing.


7. Protestant: A member of Christianity but is separated from Roman Catholic.


8. Racial Discrimination: is when a person is treated less favorably than another person in a similar situation because of their race, color, descent, national or ethnic culture


9. Scarlet Fever: an infectious bacterial disease affecting especially children, and causing fever and a bright red rash.


10. Tyranny: cruel and oppressive government or rule.


   Timeline of JFK Life


   These are the important events in John F. Kennedy's life:


2. JFK Memorial 

     JFK Structures 


1. JFK International Airport


  These are the most famous JFK structures in the country.