JFK, Jr., the Sexiest Man
While most headlines are spouting stories of Michael Jackson, the tenth year anniversary of the death of John F. Kennedy, Jr. (JFK, Jr.) is not getting too much notice. JFK, Jr. was elected the Most Sexiest Man in 1988 at the age of 27 by People Magazine. Read some forgotten facts about JFK’s life and death, and why he gets my vote as the Sexiest Man alive or dead.
JFK, Jr., the Man with Many Talents
Born in November 1960, John F. Kennedy, Jr. was one of the most revered members of the Kennedy clan. John-John, as the press nicknamed him, was only three years old when his father, John F. Kennedy, died from the criminal act of murder at the hands of an assassin.
The values instilled in JFK, Jr. by his mother, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, became apparent as John grew up to be a conscientious lawyer, journalist, philanthropist, pilot, and elite member of NY society. JFK, Jr. was frequently seen on the streets of Manhattan riding his bike, rollerblading, or hailing a cab. In fact, he replaced his bike every few months because they were stolen so often. It may be a surprise to you that when JFK, Jr. was 13, he was mugged in Central Park and his bike was stolen.
JFK, Jr. was a law-abiding citizen, except for his pranks during his college days. His only arrest was for speeding in Connecticut (driving over 80 mph in a 55 mph speed zone).
JFK, Jr. Death – Did he cause his own wrongful death?
If John, Jr. was alive today, he would be 48 years old. His death on July 16, 1999 at a modest 38 was one of the most horrific and notable deaths in 1999, which is the same year Joe DiMaggio of the NY Yankees died.
On that fateful July 16, 1999 day, JFK, Jr., his wife Carolyn Bessette Kennedy, 33, and her sister Lauren Gail Bessette, 35, took off from Essex County Airport in New Jersey. John and Carolyn were on their way to a wedding in Hyannis, MA, with a pit stop in Martha’s Vineyard to drop off Lauren Bessette. Stories circulating at the time reported that John, Jr. said he did not need help flying his Piper Saratoga II in the early evening hours. The plane crashed over the Atlantic Ocean, about seven and a half miles from Martha’s Vineyard. At first, people assumed JFK, Jr. died from foul play or a conspiracy. However, it was later stated by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) in a well-detailed report that the crash was determined to be due from spatial disorientation, a condition pilots may get which creates a sensory conflict and illusion when flying. According to the Federal Aviation Administration’s brochure on spatial disorientation in 2005, 5-10% of aviation accidents are due to spatial disorientation with 90% of these accidents resulting in fatalities.
Also noted in the NTSB report was the ankle injury and subsequent surgery JFK, Jr. sustained on June 1, 1999 while hang-gliding. According to an FAA medical doctor, a pilot with that type of injury should not have been flying so soon after the injury.
JFK, Jr.’s Estate Sued for Wrongful Death
Devastated by the loss of their two daughters, and probably like most families looking for non-economical damages for wrongful death, the Bessettes and their family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against JFK, Jr.’s estate. Like many wrongful death suits, the case was settled out of court to avoid a lengthy trial and what would be a publicity nightmare for the Kennedy family. Mum was the word on the settlement; however, a report by A&E in a biography of JFK, Jr. said the estate settled the case for $50 million.
Just like his father, John F. Kennedy, JFK, Jr. died way too young and had a bright and promising career. Seems like ten years passed in the blink of an eye.