“With broad vision and soaring but sober idealism, President John F. Kennedy had called a generation to service and summoned a Nation to greatness,” Obama said in his proclamation. “Today, we honor his memory and celebrate his enduring imprint on American history.”
Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas, on Nov. 22, 1963, during the third year of his presidency. He was pronounced dead at 1 p.m. CT.
“While President Kennedy’s life was tragically cut short, his vision lives on in the generations he inspired — volunteers who serve as ambassadors for peace in distant corners of the globe, scientists and engineers who reach for new heights in the face of impossible odds, innovators who set their sights on the new frontiers of our time,” Obama declared, commenting on the 35th president’s diplomacy during the Cuban Missile Crisis and leadership on civil rights.
All National Park Service sites in the District are flying flags at half-staff, according to Carol Johnson, spokeswoman for the National Mall and memorial parks in D.C.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.