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JFK Hopes Meredith Will Stay at Ole Miss

Jan. 24, 1963 - President Kennedy said today he would be sorry if James Meredith (pictured last year), a Negro student, decided to leave the University of Mississippi but that the Government had no other course than to protect Mr. Meredith’s right to be there. Asked at his news conference if he would consider Federal intervention on behalf of Mr. Meredith a failure if Mr. Meredith left the university, in view of an estimated $4 million cost to the Government, Mr. Kennedy commented that not only was a large amount spent for troops to back up Mr. Meredith in entering school, but two lives were lost and many injured in the ensuing campus uproar. Mr. Meredith has indicated that he may not return for a second semester. “I would be sorry if Mr. Meredith did leave,” Mr. Kennedy said. “I hope he continues. It would be a loss not only to Mr. Meredith but to the university.”


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