"Caroline stares, rather vacantly at times, at the coffin"


About this Item

After the funeral mass, President Kennedy’s coffin is placed on a horse-drawn caisson outside.

  • Title
    Funeral Party Leaves St Matthew's Cathedral
  • 1st Broadcast
  • Contributor
    Michael O'Hehir (Commentator)
  • Clip Duration
  • Material Type
  • Clip title
    "Caroline stares, rather vacantly at times, at the coffin"
  • Extended description

    President Kennedy’s funeral was held on Monday 25 November 1963 in Washington DC.

    The funeral party on the steps of St Matthew’s Cathedral after the mass. President Kennedy’s coffin is carried down the steps and placed back on the horse-drawn caisson which bore him to the cathedral. This gun carriage will now bear him to Arlington National Cemetery. The proceedings are watched by the president’s family: his widow Jacqueline, children Caroline and John, mother Rose and brothers, Ted and Robert. 3-year-old John can be seen saluting his father’s coffin.

    The commentator Michael O’Hehir describes the scene. He thinks that 6-year-old Caroline may have a grasp of what is really happening today, but not little John. He says that "Caroline stares, rather vacantly at times, at the coffin in front of her. The little boy dances around and jigs around as little boys do."

  • Information

    Telefís Éireann arranged for President Kennedy’s funeral to be broadcast live to the Irish audience via Telstar satellite. Irish sports commentator Michael O’Hehir happened to be in the US at the time and was asked to provide the commentary.

    The entire event was broadcast live, but successful transmission of images by satellite depended on good reception, and on the day it was only possible for the audience to see the 25 minutes that showed President Kennedy’s coffin being brought by horse-drawn caisson to St Matthew’s Cathedral in Washington DC for the funeral mass.

    The television audience would not have seen all of the footage live but Michael O’Hehir’s audio commentary remained available to them throughout.

  • Local keywords
    President Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, JFK, Washington DC, St Matthew's Cathedral, Arlington National Cemetery, Jacqueline Kennedy, Caroline Kennedy, John F.Kennedy, Jr, Rose Kennedy, Ted Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy, Edward M. Kennedy
  • Geographical coverage
  • Topic
    Politics and Economics
  • Publisher Broadcaster
  • First broadcast channel
    Telefís Éireann
  • Production year
  • Country of production
  • Original identifier
  • IPR restrictions
    Rights Reserved - Free Access
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  • Item type
  • Item colour
    Black and White
  • Item sound
  • Aspect ratio
  • Language used
    English (eng)
  • Original language
    English (eng)