Jfk More Than a President

John Fitzgerald Kennedy

(1917-1963),   35th president of the United States (1961-63).
Kennedy was born at 83 Beals St. Brookline, Massachusetts, on Tuesday May 29, 1917, the second son of financier Joseph P. Kennedy, who served as ambassador to Great Britain during the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt. He graduated from Harvard University in 1940, winning note with the publication of Why England Slept, an expansion of his senior thesis on Britain's lack of preparedness for World War II.   Upon graduation Kennedy enlisted in the United States navy and was commissioned as an officer in October of 1940.   In August of 1943, as commander of the U.S. Navy torpedo boat PT-109, he rescued several crewmen after the boat was rammed by a Japanese destroyer off the Solomon Islands. Although badly injured, he managed to keep his crew alive and in good spirits until rescued.   Using a small blade and a coconut, Kennedy carved a message on the coconut, “11 alive native knows posit & reef Nauru Island Kennedy." He purportedly handed the coconut to one of the natives and said, "Rendova, Rendova!", indicating that the coconut should be taken to the PT base on Rendova. The next morning the natives returned with food and supplies, as well as a letter from the coastwatcher commander of the New Zealand camp, Lieutenant Arthur Reginald Evans. The message indicated that the natives should return with the American commander, and Kennedy complied immediately. He was greeted warmly and then taken to meet PT 157 which returned to the island and finally rescued the survivors on 8 August.

Kennedy was later awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for his heroics in the rescue of the crew of PT 109, as well as the Purple Heart Medal for injuries sustained in the accident on the night of 1 August 1943. An official account of the entire incident was written by intelligence officers in August 1943 and subsequently declassified in 1959.

Early Political Success
Upon his return...