Paris, France (JFK+50) On June 1, 1961, President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy enjoyed their second day visiting Paris.
Ambassador Charles Rivkin* describes the Kennedys three-day visit to France as "a celebrated moment in the U.S.-French relationship." He wrote...
"The extraordinary warm welcome that greeted the French-speaking Mrs. Kennedy at every stop inspired President Kennedy's famous remark...
...'I am the man who accompanied Jacqueline Kennedy to Paris, and I have enjoyed it.'"
At a morning event, President Kennedy spoke to the Members of the Bureau of the Municipal Council at the Hotel de Ville (City Hall). Afterwards, there was a luncheon given by President and Mrs. Kennedy for President Charles de Gaulle and Madame de Gaulle at the American Embassy.
JFK told the audience that American interest in France goes to our "common interests" and the preservation of freedom around the world. JFK said the "long tradition (of France) gives the representatives of this country a special distinction around the world."
Afterwards JFK spoke to the Parliament Council of NATO. The grand finale came in the evening when JFK and Mrs. Kennedy were honored at another dinner and a ballet at Louis XI Theater.
*Charles H. Rivkin (b. 1962) was the son of William R. Rivkin, U.S. Ambassador to Luxembourg under JFK. CHR earned his B.A. at Yale 1984 & MBA at Harvard 1988. CHR served as Ambassador to France & Monaco 2009-2013 & was Asst. Secretary of State for Economic & Business Affairs 2014-2017.
"Statement by Ambassador Charles Rivkin, 50th Anniversary of Kennedy Visit to Paris," www.photos.state.gov/