Yesterday was JFK’s 100th birthday. The tributes and images of his life and death were there for all to see. It is the day that the Kennedy family would prefer people remember the slain president, but most remember November 22nd, the day he was assassinated in Dallas. The family understands the need and desire of many to honor the fallen president, but they prefer the memory of JFK be focused on the day of his birth, May 29th.
That may take a long time, for there are many of us alive today who remember that November day. Only when the generation is gone to whom the torch was passed, might the memory move from his death to his birth.
We honor Lincoln on his birthday and not the day he died.
Very few remember that assassinated President James Garfield died on September 19th.
William McKinley’s assassination date is now generally forgotten. He died on a September 14th.
It takes time to bury the pain and change an ache to honor. It takes time to have a tragic memory stand without sorrow. The Kennedy family has learned, through many tears, that once you acknowledge the death, you must let it go and remember the life.