The Journey is part of the overall JFK 50 The Homecoming series of events.
The first event of the JFK50 will take place on May 29 when a flame will be taken from the ‘Eternal Flame’ that burns in Arlington National Cemetery at the graveside of President Kennedy. and begin its journey back to New Ross to the Ancestral home of John F Kennedy the 35th President of the United States. A ‘Gathering Torch’ burner will carry the flame from the Kennedy Memorial in Arlington Cemetery from where it will then travel to New Ross via Boston and Liverpool, the journey in reverse taken by Patrick Kennedy, the president’s great grandfather, in 1848. The Irish Naval Service patrol vessel, the L.E. Niamh, will take the flame to Liverpool on 18th June remaining in position on Liverpool quayside until 20th June. The LE Niamh will then set sail for New Ross and on route the flame will transfer to the patrol vessel the LE Orla and will travel up the River Barrow arriving alongside in New Ross on 21st June. The LE Orla will remain in New Ross until Sunday 23rd June, playing a major role in the lighting ceremony of the Emigrant Flame.
The Taoiseach will officially attend the JFK50 celebratory events on the 22nd of June in new Ross and to see the Emigrant Flame set alight as a permanent memorial to all those who have left these shores and become part of Ireland’s emigrant family.
Since 1963, many of the people who lived in New Ross and Ireland have left our shores. These Diaspora are being invited home from the far reaches of the continents to relive a monumental and historic event to mark the 50th Anniversary of the Visit of John F. Kennedy to New Ross. John F. Kennedy’s visit to New Ross in 1963 captivated the spirit of a nation and this year that spirit will live on, through the series of JFK 50 events.