JFK went from his own ancestors’ home in Dunganstown to Wexford town, where he laid a golden cypress wreath in memory of Commodore John Barry, and was also presented with the Freedom of the Town of Wexford at Redmond Place.
Commodore Barry was born in Wexford, like JFK’s own ancestors, and went on to become a founder of the US Navy and a commander of the USS United States. The wreath was laid at the foot of a statue of Barry, before JFK moved on to accept the Freedom of the Town (a golden casket), and then to address the crowd. He referred to the intertwined elements of his heritage recorded on the casket when he said that “I am proud to have connected on that golden box the coat of arms of Wexford, the coat of arms of the kingly and beautiful Kennedys, and the coat of arms of the United States. That is a very good combination.”