JFK in Houston: A visit that changed the lives of many

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jfkHOUSTON, TX –  Sometimes memories stick with us forever. A day like today, 50-years-ago, President John F. Kennedy landed in Houston. These were the last hours of his life; but with a simple gesture, he changed the lives of many.

That night President Kennedy made a last minute change in his tight schedule to pay a visit to the League of United Latin American Citizens’ council gala at the former Rice Hotel. For the attendees, at that time, that was already a historic moment.

“This was the first time that a Hispanic group had a President drop in on an event,” recalled Alex Arroyos, one of the event organizers, “at least it was the first time for the LULAC.”

Jacky Kennedy even delivered a speech in Spanish.  For them, it was a sign that something good was happening in their struggle for civil rights.

“I remember as a little kid in Edna, which is a hundred miles from here,” explained Arroyos. “I couldn’t drink water from the faucet, you know, they were whites only.”

The next day, President Kennedy’s life was over; but the hope he ignited is still resonating in the hearts of millions.