September 2017

Village Commemorates “Hometown President” John F. Kennedy

By Stephen E. Lipken


The Village of Bronxville unveiled a special plaque on Village Hall lawn during their Monday, May 29 Memorial Day celebration and parade, commemorating the 100th anniversary of former Bronxville resident President John F. Kennedy’s birth, born May 29, 1917.


Termed the “Golden Interval” (1929-1941) by matriarch Rose Kennedy in her memoirs, Jack was a member of Boy Scout Troop 2, worshipped at St. Joseph’s Church and attended local youth dance classes.  With his eight siblings he participated in weekend games and winter sledding on the grounds of Crownlands, the family’s six-acre estate on Pondfield Road.


According to Dr. Marilynn Hill, Ph.D., Bronx Historical Conservancy Plaque Chair, JFK was the first Boy Scout to be elected President.  He returned to Bronxville on November 29, 1958 to be Best Man at the wedding of his brother Teddy to Virginia Joan Bennett, a Bronxville native.


Rendering the Invocation at Leonard Morange Square, Rabbi Sruli Deitsch, Director Bronxville Chabad Jewish Center asked, “What’s the difference from ‘remember/memorial’ and ‘history/historical?’  The Torah…not once mentions the word ‘history…’


“Yet the word ‘remember’ is found in the Torah 169 times.  The Torah is constantly reminding us to remember…’History’ is ‘his story,’ something that happened to someone else at a different time, whereas ‘memory’ is my story...


“A soldier that died during World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam, is my story, not a historical fact that is stuck in the past.  It is part of me... to write the story for our children, to stand united and live for the present…”


Noting that many members of Congress were veterans, Mayor Mary C. Marvin stated, “We can learn from our veterans, especially their expansive world view, good judgement under pressure, love of country over self and understanding that consensus is often needed to achieve the best course for America.”







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