June 5, 2020
President John F. Kennedy’s daughter Caroline Kennedy, 62, and her son, Jack Schlossberg, 27, are asking for nominations from the American public of heroes who served their communities during the coronavirus crisis for this year’s Profile in Courage Award, NBC’s Today show reports.
Multiple nominees will be chosen as recipients of the prestigious award at a ceremony that will be held when it’s safe to have large gatherings in person, according to the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation.
“What happened this year is we realized that we are seeing courage all around us in the in the extraordinary demonstration of people putting their own lives at risk to help the rest of us stay safe and healthy,” Kennedy told Savannah Guthrie of Today.
People can submit stories about those who have demonstrated courage during the pandemic on the JFK Library website or on social media using the hashtag #COVIDCourage. Nominations will be accepted through the end of August and the recipients, who are chosen by a committee, will be announced in the fall.
Schlossberg explained on Today that he nominated his friend Paul Wasserman on Instagram for his work at Fire Station 410 in Fairfax, Virginia, where he serves as an emergency medical technician in an area that has been hard hit by the coronavirus.
“At the center of VA’s outbreak, these people have gone above and beyond to meet the moment,” Schlossberg wrote on Instagram. “In addition to working full time at the DoD, Paul’s volunteering as an EMT on long overnight and weekend shifts to help the career staff during the pandemic, who he says are the real heroes.”
Kennedy and Schlossberg believe people like Wasserman embody the spirit reflected by previous recipients of the Profiles in Courage award.
The award was created 31 years ago to honor President Kennedy’s birthday on May 29 and his commitment to public service. It’s named in honor of his famous 1957 book, “Profiles in Courage,” which tells the stories of eight U.S. senators who took principled stands for unpopular positions at the risk of their careers.
Former recipients of the award include Presidents Barack Obama, George H.W. Bush and Gerald Ford; and members of Congress-among them, John McCain, Gabrielle Giffords and John Lewis. Last year’s recipient was Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.
Research contact: @TODAYshow