Saturday, November 23, 2013

JFK to best gay friend: 'I'm not that kind of boy'

Although the Kennedys loved to play touch football, JFK wasn't on the field when he deflected a very forward pass by a gay friend; nevertheless they stayed friends and "Lem" Billings (who grew into his surname by becoming an adman) later worked on his campaign for the presidency.
      We're guessing that Kennedy was not one to crucify a guy for trying, which would figure, given his history.
     From Greg in Hollywood's post about the book chronicling the enduring friendship between JFK and adman Kirk "Lem" Billings:
     Kennedy knew Lem was gay early on.
     The book Jack and Lem: John F. Kennedy and Lem Billings: The Untold Story of an Extraordinary Friendship (by David Pitts) tells of when Jack casually wrote at the end of a chatty letter to Lem after his friend made a sexual advance: “I’m not that kind of boy.”
     But Jack didn’t end the relationship.
     From the time he and Kirk LeMoyne “Lem” Billings met at Choate, until the President’s assassination thirty years later, they remained best friends.
     Lem was a virtual fixture in the Kennedy family who even had his own room at the White House.
     The book about their friendship draws on hundreds of letters and telegrams between the two, Billings’s oral history and interviews with family and friends like Ben Bradlee, Gore Vidal, and Ted Sorensen.

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