The Kennedy Siblings: Meet John F. Kennedy’s Brothers and Sisters

Kennedy, the 35th president of the United States, was one of the nine children of Joseph P. Kennedy and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy, a prominent and influential family in American politics and society but who are the John F Kennedy siblings?

The Kennedy siblings, who were born between 1915 and 1932, had diverse and remarkable lives, marked by achievements, tragedies, and controversies.

In this article, we will provide a brief profile of each of the John F Kennedy siblings, highlighting their roles, relationships, and legacy.

1. Joseph Kennedy Jr.

A image of Joseph Kennedy Jr.
Joseph Kennedy Jr.

The eldest of John F Kennedy’s siblings, Joseph Kennedy Jr.

Was born on July 25, 1915, and was a Lieutenant in the United States Navy.

Jr. had aspirations to become a politician and even planned to mount a congressional campaign in 1946, but was killed on August 12, 1944, while serving in the Navy on a World War II mission.

2. John F. Kennedy

An image of John F Kennedy
John F Kennedy

The second Kennedy sibling, John F. Kennedy.

Kennedy, was born on May 29, 1917. He served in World War II, enlisting in the Navy, just like his older brother, Joseph Jr.

Before becoming president, J.F.K. served in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

He also won the Pulitzer Prize in 1957 for his biography, Profiles in Courage.

He married Jacqueline Bouvier (widely known as Jackie) in September 1953, and the pair shared two children, Caroline and John F. Kennedy, Jr.

He was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas.

3. Rosemary Kennedy

An image of Rosemary Kennedy
Rosemary Kennedy

The third Kennedy sibling, Rosemary Kennedy, was born on Sept. 13, 1918.

Rosemary’s story is a tragic one: the third child of Joseph and Rose Kennedy was deprived of oxygen at birth, resulting in developmental and behavioral issues.

In 1941, Rosemary’s father scheduled a lobotomy for his 23-year-old daughter, and the botched procedure resulted in Rosemary becoming permanently disabled.

Following the procedure, Rosemary was sent to a psychiatric facility in upstate New York and then sent to Saint Coletta School for Exceptional Children in Wisconsin, where her siblings did not see her for two decades.

She died at the age of 86 on Jan. 7, 2005, of natural causes.

4. Kathleen Cavendish

An image of Kathleen Agnes Kennedy
One of John F. Kennedy siblings Kathleen Agnes Kennedy

The fourth Kennedy sibling, Kathleen Agnes Kennedy, also known as “Kick,” was born on Feb. 20, 1920. Kathleen worked for the Red Cross both in the United States and in England and was an aspiring journalist, writing reviews in the Washington Times-Herald.

She married William Cavendish in May 1944, though he was killed in World War II just four months later.

On May 13, 1948, Kathleen tragically died with her married lover in a plane crash over France.

5. Eunice Kennedy Shriver

An image of Eunice Kennedy Shriver
Eunice Kennedy Shriver

The fifth Kennedy sibling, Eunice Mary Kennedy Shriver, was born on July 10, 1921.

She married her husband, Robert Sargent Shriver, in 1953 and the pair shared five children, including journalist Maria Shriver.

Eunice was passionate about children with special needs and disabilities.

In 1962, she founded Camp Shriver and is responsible for the creation of the Special Olympics in 1968.

On Aug. 11, 2005, Eunice died of a stroke at  88 years old.

6. Patricia Kennedy Lawford

An image of Rosemary Kennedy
Rosemary Kennedy

The sixth Kennedy sibling, Patricia Helen Kennedy, was born on May 6, 1924. Patricia had aspirations of becoming a film producer and director.

She married actor Peter Lawford in 1954 and the couple had four children.

Patricia and Peter were part of the Hollywood social circle that included Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, and Sammy Davis Jr.

Patricia and Peter divorced in 1966, and Patricia later became involved in Democratic politics and charitable causes.

She died on Sept. 17, 2006, at the age of obert F. Kennedy

The seventh Kennedy sibling, Robert Francis Kennedy, was born on Nov. 20, 1925.

Robert, also known as Bobby or R.F.K., followed his brother John’s footsteps into politics, serving as his attorney general and campaign manager.

After John’s assassination, Robert ran for the Senate in New York and then for the presidency in 1968.

He was also assassinated on June 6, 1968, in Los Angeles, after winning the California primary.

He married Ethel Skakel in 1950 and they had 11 children.

7. Jean Kennedy Smith

Jean Kennedy Smith

The eighth Kennedy sibling, Jean Ann Kennedy Smith, was born on Feb. 20, 1928. Jean was the last surviving Kennedy sibling until her death on June 17, 2020, at the age of 92. Jean was a diplomat and activist, serving as the United States ambassador to Ireland from 1993 to 1998.

She played a key role in the Northern Ireland peace process and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011.

She married Stephen Edward Smith in 1956 and they had four children.

8. Edward M. Kennedy

An image of Edward Moore Kennedy
Edward M. Kennedy


The ninth and youngest of the John F Kennedy siblings, Edward Moore Kennedy, was born on Feb. 22, 1932. Edward, also known as Ted or Teddy, was the longest-serving senator in U.S. history, representing Massachusetts from 1962 until his death in 2009.

He was a champion of liberal causes, such as health care, civil rights, education, and immigration.

Kennedy also faced personal scandals, such as the Chappaquiddick incident in 1969, when he drove his car off a bridge and left his passenger, Mary Jo Kopechne, to drown.

He married Joan Bennett in 1958 and they had three children.

They divorced in 1982 and he married Victoria Reggie in 1992.


That is all you need to know about the John F. Kennedy siblings.

If you enjoyed reading this article, you can check out more of our posts on celebrity siblings here.

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