JFK+50: Volume 6, No. 2011
JFK JR. DIED 17 YEARS AGO TODAY
Martha's Vineyard (JFK+50) What was said about President John F. Kennedy can also be said about his son John F. Kennedy, Jr., "He had every gift but length of years." 17 years ago today, July 16, 1999, 38 year old JFK Jr. was killed in a plane crash along with his wife Carolyn Bessette Kennedy**, and sister-in-law, Lauren Bessette.
JFK Jr. was at the controls of his Piper Saratoga II when it went down off the coast of Martha's Vineyard. A NTSB investigation found the most likely cause of the crash was pilot "spacial disorientation" along with the haze and darkness of the night.
Wreckage of the aircraft was found on the afternoon of July 21, 1999. The remains were cremated and the ashes scattered from the deck of the USS Briscoe off the coast of Martha's Vineyard.
"I no longer dwell on what might have been. It's enough of a struggle finding life at the end of the tunnel and knowing that eventually you'll come out on the other side. You can't mourn the dead forever. Don't glamorize them or demonize them....As John used to say, life is for the living."
"Fairy Tale Interrupted: A Memoir of Life, Love and Loss, by Rosemarie Torenzio, Gallery Books, 2012.
"The Bessettes' Double Disaster," by Ann Gerhart and Robin Givhan, Washington Post, July 19, 1999, www.washingtonpost.com/
*John F. Kennedy, Jr. (1960-1999) was born at Georgetown University Hospital. He was called "John John" growing up in the White House.
**Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy (1966-1999) was born in White Plains, NY and grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut. She graduated from Boston University in 1988 and worked as a publicist for Calvin Klein.
John F. Kennedy, Jr.