Jacqueline Lee Kennedy Bouvier Onassis became First Lady in 1961 when her husband, John F. Kennedy was elected President of the United States. She became a very well known public figure from this point on and the public watched her very closely for the rest of her life. People from around the world showed great admiration for her. She had also become known as a woman who dedicated her life to her husband and children. She went to great lengths to protect her family.
Although she suffered much pain and heartache throughout her life, she always managed to stay strong for her children and the public. Jacqueline Onassis was a very strong, private woman and her style portrayed elegance. The public and the people Jacqueline had been acquainted with viewed her as a very strong woman. She faced the worst possible tragedy on November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas when President Kennedy was shot while riding in a parade. Throughout the bloody and traumatic ordeal of rushing President Kennedy to the hospital, Jacqueline managed to keep a level head and never broke down. Her ability to remain strong was possibly because she was in an extreme state of shock.
After arriving at the hospital with her husband, she remained strong for the man she loved. She was covered from head to toe with her President Kennedy's blood and it did not even seem to phase her. Christopher Anderson writes, "Nellie Connally remembered" while waiting at the hospital, "it only dawned on me then how strong she was. Jackie was a strong woman-a very, very, very strong woman" (6).
Even after her husband had been pronounced dead, she immediately thought of making his funeral arrangements and dealing with the press. No matter what she was dealing with, Jacqueline always appeared to be in complete control. Jacqueline also desired privacy for herself and her two children. One article entitled "Jacqueline Lee Bouvier Kennedy Onassis" confirms the desire by stating, "Thereafter it seemed the public would never allow her the privacy she desired for herself and her children" (1). Although Jacqueline was a public figure, she wanted privacy from the press and the public. She wanted to protect her children from the reporters and their cameras.
Reporters often stalked Jacqueline and her two children while they were doing daily activities, whether it was going to school or just getting into a car. There were many occasions when Jacqueline would elude the press away from her children and direct their attention on herself. Marilyn Johnson also emphasizes Jacqueline Kennedy's need for privacy by stating, "soon after [her son saluted, ] she put on her dark glasses, walked offstage into her private life... ." (52). Although Jacqueline tried to escape into a private life, she never really got the privacy that she deserved.
Pamela Fiori agrees as she reports, "Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis was the most private public person on earth" ('93). Jacqueline had an elegant style that portrayed a classy, sophisticated woman admired by much of the world. She created a style of her own by wearing her two-piece tailored suits, white gloves, dark sunglasses, and coordinating hats. Many different well-known designers were honored to work with her to achieve her classy and sophisticated look.
Amy Collins claims Jacqueline inspired many designers as she reports "During the White House years and for decades after,.