The slain president would have turned 100 on May 29, 2017.
In 1967, just three years after Kennedy’s assassination, columnist Gerald Griffin remembered the president on what would have been his 50th birthday.
“Today, but for an assassin’s bullet, John F. Kennedy would have been observing his fiftieth birthday, and many a learned column would have been written by this time on the significance of this human milestone. But now he seems forever young to those who knew him and sparkle he gave to our national life. Three years and six months after his death he still is a vivid figure. The recapitulation of the Kennedy tragedy still is, for many Americans, a searing personal experience.”
Fifty years later, fewer Americans have a direct memory of JFK’s assassination; they were born after it happened. Yet his memory lingers on in the buildings and institutions named after him, and in the eternal flame at Arlington cemetery which continues to burn to this day.