Every time you stand up for an ideal you send forth a tiny ripple of hope
Celebrating his victory in a key primary election, presidential candidate Senator Robert “Bobby” Kennedy was riding a wave of optimism in California.
“Now,” he said, was time to concentrate on having a dialogue on what direction people wanted to go in the United States.
“I think we should move in a different direction,” he said.
“So my thanks to all of you. And now it's on to Chicago and let's win there!”
Seconds after delivering these words, the senator was shot and mortally wounded as he attempted to make his way through a crowded hotel kitchen in Los Angeles.
He was well on his way to becoming US president. But now he was dead: assassinated just like his brother, President John “Jack” Kennedy five years earlier.
Bobby was the third son of the rich but unlucky Kennedy clan. His oldest brother had been killed in the Second World War. Bobby had made his way by running his brother Jack’s political campaigns as well as by investigating and exposing organised crime bosses.
With his brother in the White House, Bobby played a vital role in preventing the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis from turning into World War III. In 1964, he was elected Senator. In 1968, the father of ten ran for president. His wife Ethel was pregnant with an eleventh child at the time of his death.
Whether Bobby Kennedy would have been elected to the White House or what sort of president he might have been, remain amongst history’s great unanswered questions.