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SIU Marks JFK's 1960 Visit to Campus, Region

CARBONDALE, Ill. (AP) - Southern Illinois University is kicking off a series of events to mark the 53rd anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's visit to the Carbondale area.

A series of speeches and performances Thursday marked the first event in the seven-week Remembering JFK series. It'll culminate Nov. 22 - the 50th anniversary of Kennedy's 1963 assassination.

Kennedy campaigned in southern Illinois in October 1960 when he visited Carbondale, Marion and Harrisburg. WSIL-TV reports more than 24,000 people turned out to see the young politician as he ran for the White House. 

Coordinators hope the project teaches students about Kennedy's legacy as well as some Southern Illinois history.

SIU chancellor Rita Cheng says the school will hang a photo of Kennedy in a student center to mark his visit to the school.

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