JULY 14, 2012
“JOHNNY, I HARDLY KNEW YE” II
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 writes that “during that last springtime of his life, (JFK) was busily concerned with his battles over racial segregation in Birmingham & at the University of Alabama, his struggles with Congress on civil rights legislation, & his negotiations with Khrushchev that led to the….nuclear test ban treaty.”
But Kenny tells us that still JFK took time to arrange a surprise 50th birthday party for Dave Powers.
The event was held in the Cabinet Room where JFK gave Dave a sweatshirt with “Vigah” stenciled on the the front.
Dave was also given a 50 mile hike certificate ‘for hiking to my icebox to drink up all my beer.”
In addition, Dave received from the President a silver beer mug with the following quotation from an Indian philosopher:
“There are 3 things which are real, God, human folly & laughter. The first two are beyond our comprehension, so we must do what we can with the third.”*
*I have a coffee mug which has this inscription on one side with the JFK Library Logo on the other. I purchased this during my 1st visit to the Library back in 1986.