Robinson Crusoe Fitzgerald Kennedy

ID Card of Lt (JG) JOhn F Kennedy, USNR (www.bbc.co.uk)

ID Card of Lt (JG) JOhn F Kennedy, USNR (www.bbc.co.uk)

The men who saved JFK’s life http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-28644830

  Most articles on President John Fitzgerald Kennedy tend to focus on the man’s assassination in Dallas in 1963; few if any recall that the man known to the world as JFK had actually lived a rather rich, if short life up until that point in time. Born into the illustrious Kennedy clan from Massachusetts (whose ancestors hailed from Dunganstown, County Wexford in Ireland), John and his brother Bobby were destined to reach high office, in a fashion not dissimilar to their father, Joe Kennedy. John started the war as an Ensign with a desk job, but later graduated to the position of Lieutenant (Junior Grade) and held command of a Motor Torpedo Boat, PT-101.

JFK on PT-101 (www.bbc.co.uk)

JFK on PT-101 (www.bbc.co.uk)

While there, and after participating in a number of previous actions, PT-101 was rammed and sunk by the Japanese destroyer Amagiri, on the 2nd of August 1943. The survivors clung to wreckage and eventually were able to swim to a nearby island. JFK towed his badly-burned senior enlisted mate, Patrick McMahon to safety by clenching his life vest strap between his teeth.

_76759113_eroni&sorephotoshop

Eroni Kumana (www.bbc.co.uk)

There they waited until two natives, Eroni Kumana and Biuku Gasa, arrived by canoe and were able to take a message, scratched into a coconut to the naval authorities to arrange for a rescue. The message simply read;

NAURO ISL

COMMANDER… NATIVE KNOWS POS’IT…

HE CAN PILOT… 11 ALIVE

NEED SMALL BOAT… KENNEDY

 

(www.bbc.co.uk)

(www.bbc.co.uk)

JFK later had the coconut shell made into a paperweight which he kept on his Oval Office desk, ironically made from the timbers of another sunken ship, the HMS Resolute. Kumana sadly passed away at the age of 93, on Saturday 2nd of August.

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About eamonntgardiner

I am a PhD Student at the National University of Ireland, Galway. I am conducting research into links between wartime traumatic-neurosis and evidence of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder amongst British First World War veterans serving as Auxiliary Policemen in Ireland during the Anglo-Irish War 1919-1921. I have previously conducted research into local Irish Volunteer/Old IRA units in Munster as well as British responses to popular insurgencies in areas they administered. I have previously published a book on the British Counterinsurgency responses to the IV/IRA conflict in Ireland, 1919-1921, entitled 'Dublin Castle and the Anglo-Irish War: Counter Insurgency and Conflict.' I have also published papers on various aspects of that war and also on other insurgencies. I write a regular blog on those and other related matters, which can be read at https://eamonntgardiner.wordpress.com/ My research interests include Feminism and De-Colonialisation/Post-Colonialism, Insurgency, Police and Military Histories, Institutional Histories. Subaltern Studies, International History of the 20th Century, Modern Irish History, Historiography, History of Conflict, Peace Keeping/Enforcement/Protectorates, Spheres of Influence, Hegemonic Theories, Old and New Terrorism.
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