Tuesday, May 10, 2011

John Roses

Some of you may remember me talking about my friend, John. His father was a congressman during the Kennedy administration, and after the president was killed, John's father began a life long friendship with Jackie Kennedy.

John was the most fun loving person I have ever known......he was instant party. But he was way more than that. He had the most generous loving soul, he fought for the underdog, and was the best friend anyone could ever have.

About a year before he passed away, I had mentioned that I was looking for a rose bush that my grandmother had had in her yard. She called it "seven sisters" because on each stem, there were seven tiny roses. She had pink and red, and I had a cutting from the red one and it was thriving, but when my grandmother passed, the people who moved in her house destroyed her flowers. John's eyes sparkled as I described the rose bush, he gave me one of his infamous big bear hugs and told me that one such rose was growing in his pasture, to come dig it up. Well, John's rose has thrived........today as I walked down to cut roses for the house tears welled up. The rose bush is probably ten feet across(it has actually just spread all along the bank in front of the house) and all I could do was think of John and remember his booming voice and laugh. The green vase that the roses are in first belonged to my grandmother, then my mom and now me. The photograph was taken in Nashville, our group of friends had gathered at the same hotel and I am truly shocked they didn't kick us out! John is the big guy standing by me.
He and I are at the top of the photo.

As always, when the petals fall I leave them for a few days, the shell is one that another friend,
Venus Barefoot gave me. Everything in my house, almost everything I own tells a story. If you read my blog last night, I can tell you this.......John was first rate, he was the same no matter where or who was around, his dad was the very first recipient of the John F. Kennedy Profile
in Courage Award and John could talk with the Washington elite and then camp out at a bluegrass festival, or ride a horse through his living room. I could tell you John stories for hours!

So tonight, I share memories of an old dear friend that I miss very much.......but his roses bloom every spring, and each year grow more beautiful.
If you would like to see John's dad, Carl Elliott receiving the very first Profile in Courage Award
go to the following link, John and his dad, both first rate.......http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/org.wgbh.mla:MLA000715


  1. What a great tribute to your friend. He sounds like a wonderful person..and the roses are beautiful!

  2. How wonderful he had just the rose bush you needed and how kind of him to give it to you. He does sound like a great friend and a fun person.
    I will certainly visit the link you provided. I admired President Kennedy very much.

  3. That was a great tribute to an awesome friend. Thanks for sharing with us. It is great that you will be able to enjoy the roses for years to come.

  4. John does sound like a very special man indeed, and how lovely that he had just that very rose bush that you were after. A lovely post that warmed the heart!

  5. This is a great post and a beautiful tribute to a good friend. I'm sure he's with you more than you even know.