Woman discovers historic photos of JFK's Barrington High School visit

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Fifty years ago this month, the nation mourned the death of President John F. Kennedy. The assassination is dark memory for many Americans, but a suburban Barrington woman recently found some historic pictures of JFK.

When she first discovered boxes of photos in a closet in her parent's house, Joyce Taillon had no idea the collection included shots she believes her mother took of John F. Kennedy's 1960 campaign visit to Barrington High School. She was a sophomore at the school then.

"I'm looking at an album, and I do a double take& Is that who I think it is?" said Joyce Taillon.

Her younger brother Rusty, just 13 at the time, was a campaign volunteer for Kennedy at the time. And just two weeks before being elected, Kennedy went on a campaign swing through the Chicago suburbs. At Barrington High School they have commemorated that visit with a display of the only photo they knew of from the visit, before Joyce contacted them recently and offered to donate the 13 pictures she found.

"Kennedy came here and it was kind of an interesting situation. One of the members of his PT boat lived in Barrington, and that was kind of the draw to Barrington," said Dr. Tom Leonard, superintendent.

Joyce Taillon says, ironically, she comes from a Republican family. She credits her parents for supporting her brother while he campaigned for a Democrat for president. And she's thrilled the photos will help shed more light on an historic event in Barrington.

"These were not doing any good in my closet," said Taillon.

The district plans to debut the photos at a reception next week before eventually putting them in a permanent display right next to the current display.

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