June 13, 1961 · n.p.
(2) Edward M. Kennedy. Typed Letter Signed ""Ted Kennedy / Many thanks for the other day John,"" 1p, 7.25"" x 10.5"". No place, June 13, 1961. To Mr. John Mahanna, Berkshire Eagle, Pittsfield, Massachusetts. Three file holes at blank left margin. The 29-year-old brother of the President writes, in full, ""During my recent visit in Rome, I had the pleasure of meeting with Our Holy Father, Pope John XXIII, and the privilege of receiving His blessing. I expressed my wish to share this honor with my friends and asked His Holiness to bless the enclosed medal for you. Best personal regards.""John Gerald William Mahanna (1913-1984), a Navy man, was on leave from fighting in the Pacific, visiting San Francisco. He went to check into a hotel, but it was booked. Another Navy man in line, hearing that he was from Massachusetts, said, ""You can bunk with me if you want."" It was John F. Kennedy, and the two struck up a friendship. After the war, the two stayed in touch. Mahanna became a county editor at The Berkshire Press in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, supporting JFK in his races for Congress, the Senate, and the presidency. In the 1960s, he became a public relations specialist with the Office of Civil Defense and then a liaison in the office of the Secretary of the Army." (Inventory #: 59833)