As the date November 22nd comes onto our calendars, there are some of us that know the meaning of this date in history and others will go about their day like normal. It was on this date 52 years ago, that President John F. Kennedy lost his life and with it the hope of a nation that had counted on him to lead us into the new frontier. I was not born during this time in history but it was passed down to me from my grandmother who understood what his death would mean to our nation. From newspaper clippings, to framed pictures, to books, and finally a note from heaven, she had kept these mementos tucked away in a file underneath her bed. On the 25th anniversary of his death she brought out these mementos to show me since I had an interest in history. As an 8 year old boy, seeing your grandmother get excited talking about him made me generate more of an interest. One of those mementos is pictured below, and the poem titled “Special Delivery from Heaven” was meant to comfort the Kennedy family and to assure them that they would be okay. The 8 year old boy thought this letter actually came from JFK himself, and a grandmother who did not want to tell him the truth. I have kept things like this not only to remember JFK himself but also the memory of my grandmother.
It was the hope of not only her generation that JFK would be the one to lead us on a path that we were destined for but the generations that followed. We have looked for leaders like JFK ever since his death, and although some claim to have the same wit, charisma, leadership, and hope, none of them have been able to follow through. This date in history is important to always look back upon because it changed the lives of many, and the path of the United States. It is easy to also get caught up in the “what could have been”, instead of the “look what we had”. I believe that’s how JFK should be remembered, and the anniversary of his death should be a testament of what he did, instead of what he could have done had he lived. We as individuals look to people to inspire us to achieve great things, and with him we had a leader that told us to go for it. From an early age I taught my children about this day in history and every year I had to remind them of what happened on this day in history. That has changed, and now my children come up to me and tell me what day it is. It is important to remember these historical dates and pass it on to the future generations, because without history we will never know where we came from and who got us there. It was President Kennedy that pushed us to the moon, and now it’s time to reach for the stars.