Honoring The Kennedys

My mother was a big fan of the Kennedy family who were popular in the way that rock stars were. The charisma of John F. Kennedy and his family lead them to their being called the figurative designation of Camelot. This name was credited by Jacqueline Kennedy in view of John’s affection for the musical. Jacqueline Kennedy was admired for her style and elegance and I vividly remember my mother trying to mimic her wardrobe in her own closet. Even though my mother wasn’t much into politics, like many other Americans, she was swept away by the family’s allure and charisma.

I will also never forget that dismal day, November 22, 1963. I was in the third grade and the principal’s voice came on the loud speaker and told us that we should stand up behind our chairs because he had an important piece of news. “I’m very sad to report that our beloved President Kennedy has just been assassinated in Dallas, Texas.” The word ‘assassinated’ became part of my vocabulary that week, It was one of our ten spelling words and echoed repeatedly all week long on the black and white television perched on the small table in our living room. Our weekend writing assignment was to write an essay titled, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country,” in honor of Kennedy’s words spoken at his inaugural address.

Yesterday I watched Ted Kennedy’s Memorial Service, this time on a colored television but with similar feelings of admiration. As a grown woman, I now have a better understanding of the important mark some people make on our country’s history and how their legacy will live on. Ted Kennedy served forty years of his life in the senate, and after watching highlights from his speeches and interactions throughout those years, one can clearly see how much fun he must have been to work with; how his strong sense of humor lightened up some very tenuous moments. During these difficult economic times, this could be a lesson to us. Let’s lighten up, be thankful for the good things and remember to make the most of our sense of humor!

Rest in peace, Ted Kennedy.


1 Response to “Honoring The Kennedys”

  1. 1 stuarx August 30, 2009 at 12:37 pm

    Diana, I actually had the pleasure of shaking Senator Kennedy’s hand in July of 1978 at Boston’s Beth Israel Hospital, (where my wife Carol was born) he gave an oration on, what else, socialized medicine, so was not anyting new on his agenda.
    I remember vividly that day, November 22, 1963, I was in your class, and one kid, Michael who happened to be on some sort of errand had heard talk of what had happened to President Kennedy, entered the classroom and told Mrs Hudes, and in her patented surly tone discounted it at first, deeming what Michael said as disrespectful. To this day I query individuals as to if they remember what they were doing when they heard the news.
    I lived in and around Boston from 1972-1985, The Kennedys were somewhat of a “Royal Family” to this day in every bookstore that one frequents up there, a section devoted to that family exits.
    Senator Kennedy was revered by most, had detractors of course, but for the people of Massachusetts he got the job done, despite his well known shortcomings in reference to his personal life.
    I always wondered if any political sparks flew when your own Governor S. would visit Hyannisport, although his statement in regards to Senator Kennedy’s passing was heartfelt and moving.
    Your sentiments were right on target, Stu

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"A writer uses a journal to try out the new step in front of the mirror."

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About Me

I am a memoirist, essayist, poet and teacher whose passion is keeping a notebook. My notebook is my muse and my alter ego. It contains personal snippets of my life and observations from the world around me. Diarist Anaïs Nin has been a great source of inspiration for me. My hobbies include writing, writing and more writing, but when I have extra time, I enjoy reading, walking, hiking, yoga, working out, cooking and hanging out with my family and Maltese Poodle, Spunky. In order not to become ensconced by the glare of my computer screen, I also teach in the UCLA Extension Writers' Program and in various conferences and festivals around the country. My pleasure comes from sharing my joy of journaling with professional writers and anyone interested in writing.

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