" He was my commanding officer, my president and my friend.
I'll never forget him
~ John "Mac" Maguire, JFK's radioman aboard PT-109


PT-109 on Water   JFK & PT-109   PT-109
click to enlarge the images

The photos above show the PT-109 model that one of my sons built and gave me for Christmas last year (2003). The painting is from the back cover of an LP record of JFK's speeches.

JFK had a model of PT-109 as well:

JFK PT Model

JFK kept his PT 109 model on a shelf in the Oval Office, not far from the glass encased coconut which sat on his desk:

JFK Coconut

A few years ago a GI-Joe doll was made of JFK in his PT-109 outfit. I don't know if it's still available.


For January 20, 1961 a life-size float of PT-109 was made for the Inaugural Parade and the original crew members stood on deck saluting a totally surprised and amazed President Kennedy as it passed the podium where he was standing:

JFK PT Float

Then three years later the world was broken hearted to see the most famous salute of all:

John-John's Salute

A good war movie to rent is PT-109. It was produced during JFK's lifetime and is exciting and historicallly accurate. It's available in most video stores. ~ Jackie Jura

JFKdeskCocnut Coconut shell on President Kennedy's desk, Oval Office, White House









THE STORY OF PT-109 (the movie was based on the 1944 New Yorker article "Survival" by John Hersey)

JFK was his dad's friend and comrade in arms. by Bill Berlow, Tallahassee News, Nov 21, 2003
When Jack Maguire Jr. thinks about John F. Kennedy, he can't help but think about his late father too. John E. "Mac" Maguire Sr. was JFK's radioman aboard PT-109, the torpedo boat the late president skippered when it was sunk by a Japanese destroyer in August 1943. Forty years since Kennedy's assassination, the Camelot legend survives...It was the human side of JFK that Jack Maguire Jr. saw through his father's eyes. To Maguire Jr., a 26-year state employee here in Tallahassee, Kennedy evokes memories of Dad, one of 11 PT-109 survivors whose wartime connection with Kennedy led to their lasting personal friendship. "They both had a good sense of humor," says Maguire, 56. The friendship between his father and JFK is evident in scrapbooks that Jack and wife Becky cherish. One is labeled "Memoirs of John E. Maguire, Sr., and John F. Kennedy," and includes copies of letters to and from JFK, then-Attorney General Robert Kennedy, and Cliff Robertson, the actor who portrayed Kennedy in the movie about PT-109. The senior Maguire served as an adviser in the making of the film.

"Sorry to hear about your back trouble," Maguire wrote to the president six months after Kennedy's 1961 inauguration. "I am writing to Kowal (another 109 crew member) to see if he can get a board such as the one you slept on on the old 109. The one we always borrowed to wash clothes on, shoot crap, play cribbage, take in the outdoor movies to sit on and use as a bar at crew beverage parties, to mention just a few of its major uses." It was a plank prank, Maguire Sr. said in a 1974 newspaper interview, that caused Kennedy's angriest outburst at the crew. "The men took it to cut up for cribbage boards. I happened to be around when he found out, and he said pretty angrily, 'Tell the crew they've got five goddamn minutes to reassemble their game boards and get a plank back in my bed!' He got it, too." The older Maguire stayed in touch with his former commanding officer after they were rescued from the Pacific atoll they'd swum to, with Kennedy, holding a tether in his teeth, towing a severely wounded shipmate on his back. Before the war ended, when Maguire was shipped stateside for leave, he visited JFK at Hyannisport, the famous Kennedy family retreat in Massachusetts. By then, Kennedy had been shipped home because of his bad back, which was aggravated when the 109 was sunk in a collision with an enemy warship in the dead of night. One 1944 handwritten letter from Kennedy to his ex-radioman said in a postscript that he expected to undergo a back operation. "If you happen to be home," Kennedy said to his friend, "we might have a few beers in New York."

After the war, Maguire Sr. worked on Kennedy's congressional campaigns, and later in his campaign for the presidency. "When I was in the sixth grade we had a show-and-tell," Jack Maguire recalls. "The assignment had to have something to do with somebody famous. I brought in an autographed copy of 'Profiles in Courage.'" At that point, Kennedy was a senator, and Maguire remembers telling his classmates that his father told him, "Someday he'll be president." When that came to pass, Maguire Sr., a New York native who'd moved to Jacksonville, became the U.S. marshal for what became the Middle District of Florida, thanks to JFK's influence. It was a job he would hold until Richard Nixon became president almost nine years later. Maguire Jr. says his father never had a bad word to say about his friend and former skipper. Among Jack Maguire's mementoes is a taped PBS interview of his father that was conducted years after Kennedy's death but never aired. The older Maguire says in the interview that he often visited JFK in the White House when he was in Washington on official business. In a newspaper story published 29 years ago, Maguire Sr. told his interviewer, "He was my commanding officer, my president and my friend. I'll never forget him." Neither, it seems, will the rest of the world.

Aussies injured in Solomon Islands (by opponents of corrupt PM). BBC, Apr 18, 2006. Go to 5.Pyramidal New World Order & JFK'S LETTER TO SOLOMONS & JFK NEPHEW THANKS NATIVES

JFK SWAM TO NARU NOT NAURU (one is in the Solomons & the other is in the Gilberts). "JFK didn't swim 1,000 miles" (points out an astute reader)

Map of PT-109 crash and islands they swam to, National Geographic

PT-109, JFK IN WWII, National Geographic

Atlas of Solomon Islands

JFK NEPHEW THANKS NATIVES (rescued "Chief of Great Country")

SEARCHING FOR JFK'S...BOAT (instead of his killers)


JFK BROTHER FLEW DRONE (the story of Joseph Kennedy Jr's heroic WW2 mission)


Jackie Jura
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~

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