50 Years Later: Senator Robert Kennedy's Visit to Eastern Kentucky

(WYMT) - Senator Robert Kennedy made several stops in eastern Kentucky 50 years ago this week.

Robert Kennedy. (Library of Congress-MGN/file)

Less than one month before announcing he was a candidate for President of the United States, Kennedy toured the region on February 13th and 14th, 1968.

During his tour, he made a stop in Hazard and talked to people living along liberty street in Hazard.

"It wasn't like he was in a hurry. He walked slowly he took time to meet the crowd and talk with the crowd and be personable with the people. he was genuinely engaged and interested in the people and he wanted to hear how they were doing and how they were living," said Mike Levinson who walked alongside the Senator in 1968.

He held hearings on the war on poverty and visited homes, schools, and even a strip mine.

Later in the year, he was assassinated following a victory in the California primary.

His assassination happened less than a year after his visit to Hazard, but Levinson says the impact of his visit was almost immediately.

"He went back to Washington and I think he almost immediately played a part in getting the grants and pushing through the things for the people here on liberty street that he visited," said Levinson.

Click on the links to see previous stories we've done on the historic visit:

2004 Reenactment of Senator Robert Kennedy's visit to Hazard

2008 Remembering Sen. Robert Kennedy's visit to Eastern Kentucky

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