Tuesday, July 24, 2012


July 24, 2012


Knoxville, Tennessee (JFK+50) Today we continue our report of Chapter 12 of the book by Kenneth P. O'Donnell & David F. Powers with Joe McCarthy.  It is published by Little, Brown & Company.

The title of Chapter 12 is "Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ye"

Kenneth O'Donnell tells us that after JFK left the Dail, he hurried to DUBLIN CASTLE. 

There he was invested as a freeman of the city & given honorary degrees from the Catholic National University of Ireland* & the Protestant Trinity College**.

*The Catholic University of Ireland was founded in 1851 but became the National University of Ireland in 1909.

**Trinity College, modeled after Oxford & Cambridge, was founded in 1592.

In his speech, President Kennedy said:

"I want to say how pleased I am to have this association with these two great universities.  I now feel equally a part of both, & if they ever have a game of Gaelic football or hurling, I shall cheer for Trinity & pray for National."***

***I wrote to Dave Powers on Oct 9, 1987 inviting him to join me at the football game to be played at Chestnut Hill between Boston College & the University of Tennessee.  

In his reply of Oct 14, he thanked me for the invitation but declined because 'I am not up to weekend sporting events any more.'

Before I left Knoxville for the game, I sent Dave an orange UT sweatshirt.  His answer follows:

John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library
Columbia Point
Boston, Massachusetts 02125

October 30, 1987

Dear John:

What a great sweatshirt - I've worn it already - the weather is perfect for it right now.  I certainly appreciate your thoughtfulness.

This weekend while watching the game (on TV) I'll cheer for Tennessee & pray for B.C.

Thanks a million.

With my very best wishes,

Dave Powers
Museum Curator

JFK+50 Comment:

Praying apparently was more effective than cheering as the Boston College Eagles upset the mighty Volunteers 20 to 18.  BC finished the season with a 5-6 record while Tennessee was 10-2-1.