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President Kennedy Expresses Sorrow Over Rayburn Diagnosis

Oct. 5, 1961 - President Kennedy expressed "deep sorrow" today on learning that Speaker Sam Rayburn (pictured left) was incurably ill of cancer. The President's statement said: "I have learned with deep sorrow of the serious illness of my friend, Speaker Sam Rayburn. I know the whole nation will join with me and Mrs. Kennedy in prayer for Speaker Rayburn, who has served his nation so well and so faithfully for so many years." Former President Truman said he was "awfully sorry" to hear the news, adding, "There is no finer man or a better public servant than Sam Rayburn.”


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