Even though it has been more than 5 decades since an assassin’s bullet claimed the life of John F. Kennedy, there is a great fascination with this man. There have been thousands of books written about every detail of his life, but there are a few interesting facts we can still consider with the 35th President of the United States that aren’t always talked about.
1. He Loved Spy Stories
If there was one thing that JFK loved more than anything else, it was a good spy story. Thrillers were his favorite and Ian Fleming novels were a particular love of his. From Russia With Love was his favorite novel and it often inspired his own creativity. That’s right – JFK wrote his own spy novel. It starred Lyndon Johnson, LBJ himself, as the mastermind of a coup against Kennedy. If it had been released, JFK would probably be one of the best-selling authors of all time.
2. Kennedy Hated the Idea of the Cuban Embargo
In some ways, the economic embargo on Cuba was a necessity at the time. The island nation was just 90 miles from the shores of the United States and creating allies with Communist foes who were thinking about destroying the democracy of America. To make sure that he had enough of the items that he loved, Kennedy bought 100 dozen high grade Cuban cigars the day before he planned to order the ban on imports from Cuba.
3. He Received Last Rites 4 Times Over His Life
Kennedy was good at making his weaknesses into his strengths. He was devoutly Catholic and so he followed the belief mechanisms of the church rather closely. Over the course of his life, he was given last rites 4 separate times. Unfortunately the fourth time was in Dallas in 1963 and it would be the last time. Still – surviving three separate times when others thought he would likely die is a remarkable achievement.
4. He Also Had 4 Known Assassination Attempts
Just one month after being elected, a retired postal worker attempted to blow up JFK with a car that was filled with dynamite. Two other plots, in Chicago and Tampa respectively, were also uncovered in the months leading up to that fateful day in Dallas in 1963. Just as he didn’t survive his fourth set of last rites, he couldn’t survive the fourth assassination attempt.
5. He Called and Hollywood Listened
JFK wanted the country to see what it would be like if a nation’s military leadership ever got out of control. Maybe it was his love of spy stories that intrigued him instead, but one phone call to Hollywood got the job done. The movie was Seven Days in May and Kennedy was so committed to the process that he moved out of the White House for a weekend so that filmmakers could have the location. The administration even allowed staged riots on the grounds to provide an extra level of realism.