Ted Sorensen Memorial Service: Bill Moyers, Pete Peterson, and Other Eulogies
In a memorial service this week Caroline Kennedy, Bob Kerrey, Kofi Annan, and others gathered to celebrate the remarkable life of JFK speechwriter and adviser Theodore Sorensen. Here Bill Moyers, Adam Frankel, and Peter G. Peterson share their memories of the man—and his best jokes. Plus, read The Daily Beast's Mark Katz remembrance written just after his death last month.
Gillian’s guidelines for us were exact: No more than four minutes, or 500 words. Ted had a similar compact with John Kennedy: Be direct, and to the point; use short words and clauses; aim for clarity.
There’s an old saying, attributed to Montaigne, that no man is a hero to his valet; that when you come to know a person, to see a man, warts and all, he appears smaller somehow, less worthy of admiration. I suppose that may be true in some cases. It’s certainly not true in mine.
I was privileged to be Ted’s friend for many years, especially in our years at the Council on Foreign Relations. He loved that organization and Gillian and I wondered if I might recount some of our experiences at the Council.
Today, as wordsmiths, politicos and Kennedyophiles alike remember Ted Sorensen for the eloquence of his speeches, I am chuckling to myself about the eloquence of his humor.