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Order Underwrites Kennedy Grave Site Restoration RESTORATION work began Oct. 27 at the grave site of President John F. Kennedy, where the words of his inaugural address, engraved in a granite wall opposite the eternal flame over his tomb, had become difficult to read after decades of weathering. The restoration of the lettering was underwritten by the Knights of Columbus, of which Kennedy was a member from 1946 until his assassination in 1963. On Jan. 20, 2011, the nation will mark the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s inaugural address, which is perhaps best remembered for the phrase, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” That quote, as well as others from the inaugural address and additional speeches, is inscribed in the gravesite wall. The original engraving was done by master stonemason John Everett Benson, who continues his trade in Rhode Island at the age of 72. Gordon Ponsford undertook the restoration work and has completed similar projects at

John Benson (left) joins Gordon Ponsford in restoring the engraved text at John F. Kennedy’s grave site at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. more than a dozen sites in Arlington National Cemetery in recent years. Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson said that the Order “is proud and honored to be able to make this contribution to honoring the memory of President Kennedy. His words inspired an entire generation, not just in America, but throughout the world. We are

grateful for the opportunity to work with Arlington National Cemetery in helping to ensure that those words will continue to inspire all who visit his final resting place.” President Kennedy, the first Catholic president of the United States, was a member of Bunker Hill Council 62 in Charlestown, Mass.♦

‘Hope for Haiti’s Children’ Program Underway THREE MONTHS after the Knights of Columbus announced its donation of $1 million to Project Medishare to provide prostheses to Haitian children who lost limbs in the January earthquake, a large shipment of the prosthetic devices was sent to Port-au-Prince in early November. At a Nov. 8 news conference held at the Hialeah, Fla., facility where the prosthetic devices were being prepared for shipment, representatives of the organizations involved expressed enthusiasm for the difference that the “Hope for Haiti’s Children” program will make in the lives of child amputees. An estimated 1,000 children underwent amputations after suffering severe injuries in the earthquake. Project Medishare, which operates a critical-care, trauma and rehabilitation hospital in Port-au-Prince and clinics in the Central Plateau, is equipped to fit prostheses and to provide physical therapy once patients have been fitted with the devices. The Knights of Columbus agreed to underwrite the cost of both the prostheses and the therapy for children who needed them. Recip-

Supreme Secretary Emilio Moure, pictured with Dr. Robert Gailey of Project Medishare, expresses the enthusiasm of the Knights of Columbus for the “Hope for Haiti’s Children” program. ients will be supplied with up to three prostheses (as they outgrow them) and two years of physical therapy. “Bringing the gift of mobility and independence to these children is an important investment in their lives and, through them, in Haiti’s future,” said Supreme Secretary Emilio B. Moure.♦



Columbia December 2010  
Columbia December 2010  

This issue of Columbia magazine contains articles about the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s famous inaugural speech, the new...