Truth Or Fiction: A Look At The Scandalous Affair of Marilyn Monroe And John F. Kennedy

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February 22, 2018 10:52 By Fabiosa

John F. Kennedy was no stranger to allegations and rumors over his infidelity and extra-marital affairs, but it was Marilyn Monroe, by far, who held the public's attention as one of his possible mistresses.

Monroe's birthday song

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At the president's request, Marilyn Monroe sang "Happy Birthday Mr. President" to JFK for his 45th birthday, in Madison Square Garden on May 19, 1962, ten days before his real birthday. This performance was regarded by many as the proof that an affair has begun because Jackie Kennedy was not at her own husband's birthday party.

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What the birthday performance did provide was the only known genuine photo of Monroe with either of the Kennedy brothers, a photograph only released in 2010 by White House photographer Cecil Stoughton. When JFK took the stage to thank her, he said, "I can now retire from politics after having had Happy Birthday sung to me in such a sweet, wholesome way."

How the relationship began.

The first time Marilyn and JFK were confirmed to have been at the same place at the same time was at Paris Ball on April 11, 1957, at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in NYC. Marilyn was there with her then-husband, playwright Arthur Miller, while John attended with his wife, Jackie, and his sister, Eunice Kennedy Shriver.

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Both of them were photographed extensively throughout the night, but no meeting between them took place at that event. It's more likely that John and Marilyn first met at a dinner party hosted by actor Peter Lawford in 1961. Peter was married to John's sister Patricia, whom Marilyn became friends with while filming Let's Make Love.

On May 19, 1962, Marilyn, clad in a curve-hugging sequined dress, sang a breathy rendition of the song for JFK. While rumors of an affair ran rampant after the event, and pictures have been doctored over time to show them together, the only photographic evidence of them that exists is a shot of Marilyn, John, and Bobby Kennedy having a conversation during a party at the home of movie executive Arthur Krim after she performed.

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Details of the affair

The Kennedy affairs were believed to be numerous throughout his ten-year marriage to Jackie Kennedy and he even stands accused of using his special assistant Dave Powers to line up willing women. “If I don’t have sex every day, I get a headache,” John F. Kennedy used to tell most people who would listen, according to the NY Post. Marilyn was married three times aside her numerous affairs.

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Less than three months after the famous performance, Marilyn would be dead from an accidental overdose of barbiturates, leaving behind a lifetime of unconfirmed rumors of a relationship between her and the president.

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Despite the fact that JFK's philandering ways were well known, it's most likely that his connection with Marilyn was just a dalliance and nothing more than a one-night stand. Do you believe President John F Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe had a short affair? Let us know in the comments section below.

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