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It’s been almost 17 years since John F. Kennedy Jr. was lost off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard and 53 years since his father was assassinated in Dallas. And when we look back at the family that has a permanent place in the hearts of Americans, the parade of tragedies is still heartbreaking.

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While, most of the rest of his family went into public life, John F. Kennedy Jr. went to law school then published a magazine. In his final interview with Katie Couric, he discussed his mother, who didn’t want him to go into public life. He said that she thought a person should “have a sense of who [they] are […] before [they] took that on.”

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When Couric tells him that he and his sister seem “well adjusted,” John John appears near the point of breaking down and says, “She would have liked that.”

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