In 1961 Mr Kumana and Mr Gasa were invited to President Kennedy's inauguration.
But in Honiara, the Solomons' capital, officials decided that
they were too uncouth for the honour
and sent some of their own number instead.
Two years later Kennedy was assassinated.
"I mourned for a whole week upon hearing of my friend's death,"
Mr Kumana said.
JFK'S LETTER TO SOLOMONS
Yesterday [Dec 2001], on hearing the news that the island of Nauru* had lost all forms of communication with the outside world after suffering total economic collapse, I remarked that JFK would be sad to hear this. He had a special attachment to the people of the Solomon Islands because it was they who rescued him and his crew after the crash of the PT-109. President Kennedy, in his Inaugural Address and throughout speeches all his life, emphasized that he cared not only for the people and welfare of the United States, but for people and nations everywhere in the world. That is why his mortal death on November 22, 1963 affected not just the people of the United States, but people and nations all over the world.
The following correspondence (copies of originals are scanned above) between JFK and a native of the Solomon Islands is proof of JFK's loving feelings toward peoples of all nations.
All the best,
Jackie Jura, 2001
On February 6th, 1961 the newly inaugurated president - John Fitzgerald Kennedy - received a letter of congratulations from one of the natives who had rescued him in August 1943. JFK responded in a letter dated March 11, 1961. Here are the letters:
from the Solomon Islands:
February 6, 1961
In my reverence and sense of your greatness I write to you.
It is not fit that I should write to you but in my joy I send this letter.
One of our ministers, Reverend E. C. Leadley, came and asked me,
"Who rescued Mr Kennedy?" And I replied, "I did."
This is my joy that you are now President of the United States of America.
It was not in my strength that I and my friends were able to rescue you in the time of war,
but in the strength of God we were able to help you.
The name of God be praised that I am well and in my joy
I send this loving letter to you, my friend in Christ,
it is good and I say "Thank you" that your farewell words to me
were those printed on the dime, "In God We Trust".
God is our Hiding Place and our Saviour in the time of trouble and calm.
I am, your friend,
answer from the White House:
March 11, 1961
Reverend E. C. Leadley has recently sent me your very kind message,
and I can't tell you how delighted I was to know that you are well and prospering
in your home so many thousands of miles away from Washington.
Like you, I am eternally grateful for the act of Divine Providence
which brought me and my companions together with you and your friends
who so valorously effected our rescue during time of war.
Needless to say, I am deeply moved by your expressions and I hope that the new responsibilities
which are mine may be exercised for the benefit of my own countrymen
and the welfare of all of our brothers in Christ.
You will always have a special place in my mind and my heart,
and I wish you and your people continued prosperity and good health.
John F. Kennedy
text of the originals which appeared in the book JOHN FITZGERALD KENNEDY... AS WE REMEMBER HIM by Mrs Rose Kennedy, Joseph Kennedy, Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, Robert F Kennedy... and other family, friends and intimate associates, published by Colombia Records Legacy Collection in New York, 1965
PT-109 HIT BY TSUNAMI
Tsunami hits South Pacific's Solomons (see map of area). ABC, Apr 1, 2007
Gizo at center of tsunami fears (see view from Gizo). BBC, Apr 1, 2007
Aussies injured in Solomon Islands (by opponents of corrupt PM). BBC, Apr 18, 2006. Go to 5.Pyramidal New World Order & JFK NEPHEW THANKS NATIVES & JFK'S BOAT & COCONUT
CANADA REJECTS REFUGEES FROM NAURU
* JFK SWAM TO NARU NOT NAURU
* Reader points out that "JFK didn't swim 1,000 miles" (island of Nauru is in the Georgians; it's the island of Naru that's in the Solomons...)
PT-109 STORY (as told by JFK and crew)
JFK TRUTH & UNTRUTH
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