The Greatest JFK Tribute?

Going through some of my father’s stuff, I just stumbled across the Congressional Record from November 25, 1963, the first day Congress reconvened after the assassination of President Kennedy. The Record that day 50 years ago is a truncated version because both House and Senate only met briefly before marching off as a group to view Kennedy’s casket in the Capitol Rotunda in preparation for his funeral. However, several members and others paid tribute to the fallen leader, among them Speaker McCormack, Chief Justice Warren and Sen. Dirksen. All the remarks are well worth reading, but the most notable eulogy to me was that¬†delivered by Montana Sen. Mike Mansfield.

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How he was able to summon this sort of poetry and depth of feeling on short notice, I just don’t know. Maybe the story is told somewhere, but I haven’t seen it. I know things change, times change, and so on, but I simply can’t see a Harry Reid or John Boehner having the courage to imagine sentiments like this, much less write and speak them.

Please click on the image below to get a readable size.mansfield jfk


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