Saturday, August 12, 2023

John F. Kennedy Jr. Stainless Steel Rolex Submariner

I've recently began publishing and, so I thought it would be interesting to take a look back at this story on JFK Jr. rocking his Rolex Submariner.

...Rolex Super Coolness...

John F. Kennedy Jr.


Rolex Submariner

@ Studio 54 in New York

It took me many years to find, but on November 24, 2016, I finally found a photo of JFK Jr., wearing his Rolex Submariner! I knew he wore one as I had discovered a photo years ago that showed him wearing what was clearly a Rolex Oyster Bracelet with a flip-lock clasp. Today, when I was doing some research for an upcoming story on Rolex @ STUDIO 54 in New York, I discovered this photo of JFK Jr. wearing his Submariner, where you can see it from the front, so we finally have a true positive ID.

The AP photo seen above and below was taken in front of Studio 54 on December 13, 1979, and shows John F. Kennedy Jr, as he attempts to evade the paparazzi photographers. I think he is wearing a K-Swiss Rugby shirt in the photo.

Prior to publishing the photo above of JFK Jr. in a New York Taxicab in front of Studio 54, sporting his Rolex Submariner, a close friend of JFK Jr., read this article and contacted me to share the supposed story behind the photo above.

JFK Jr.'s friend told me that the watch was a Paul Newman Exotic Dial Daytona, which Aristotle Onassis gave JFK Jr., when he married his mother, Jackie Kennedy. 

He told me that JFK Jr. wore a Paul Newman Daytona with an Exotic white dial...He took the Rolex Daytona for servicing to Rolex in New York, and they replaced the riveted bracelet with a new Rolex Oyster bracelet with the flip-lock clasp, as seen above. Of course the photo at the top of this story refutes this fact, unless JFK Jr., had and wore two Rolex sport watches?

In the photos below, we see young JFK Jr, with his mother Jackie, and his stepfather, Aristotle Onassis.

JFK Jr's pal went to high school with him is named David, and as the story goes (As David shared with me in an interview), David had a really cool Canon telephoto lens on his 35MM camera. JFK Jr., really liked the lens and offered to trade him his Rolex Daytona for the lens, which at the time was worth about the same amount of money. 

David accepted, and was the one who had the bracelet replaced by Rolex in New York. One day, JFK Jr's mother, Jackie-O, asked JFK Jr., where his Rolex watch was that Aristotle Onassis gave him, and he told her he traded it to David for a Camera lens. Jackie freaked out, and made her son trade it back. She said, "That was a gift from your step-father. You are not to trade it or give it away." 

David was able to ID the watch as a Paul Newman Daytona because he owned it and wore it for close to a year. He said it had an engraving on the back that said "To John from Aristotle." What a crazy story? It turns out that reality is stranger than fiction. By the way, Aristotle Onasiss's granddaughter Athina Onassis also wears a Rolex, which I did a story on last year.

Note: In the photo above of The First Family, JFK with Jackie, Caroline and JFK Jr., pose on August 4, 1962 at Hyannis Port. 

JFK Jr, and Caroline Kennedy in 1976 @ Andover Boarding School in New England 

In the past, I published photos of other Kennedy relatives wearing Rolex watches, including JFK Jr's sister Caroline Kennedy (also pictured above and below wearing her Rolex Datejust) as well as his cousin Maria Shriver

Years ago I heard a rumor that said President Kennedy's brother Bobby Kennedy Sr. wore a Rolex Submariner, but I have not been able to find a photo of him wearing a Rolex. So in 2023, I reached out to RFK Jr, through a friend of his who asked him if his father wore a Rolex? Bobby Jr. replied by saying, "Not that I am aware of. As a matter of fact, I don't recall ever seeing my father wear a watch on his wrist!?!!"

JFK Jr's cousin, Ted Kennedy Jr. wears a Rolex SEA-DWELLER as seen below.

Ted Kennedy Jr.'s father, Ted Kennedy, who was JFK's youngest brother is pictured below at the White House in Washington D.C., with their brother Bobby Kennedy.

The next three images of JFK Sr., and JFK Jr., appear courtesy of the estate of Stanley Tretick. Stanley Tretick was a Look Magazine photographer.

JFK Jr. is pictured below with his wife Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, and if you think about it, JFK Jr., is the closest thing The United States ever had to having a prince. I remember once watching a Charlie Rose interview with author Pete Hamill who was talking about JFK and JFK Jr, and how much as a society we idolized them, and how unfortunate that both father and son left this world long before their full potential could be realized.

Peter Hamill quoted Irish Poet, William Butler Yeats 1919 poem named "In Memory of Major Robert Gregory", which he argued was on-point for JFK and JFK Jr, with the last line in the 11th stanza which read:

"What made us dream that he could comb grey hair?" –William Butler Yeats (1919)

Charlie Rose interviewed Peter Hamill on July 22, 1999 and Pete Hamill, as I mentioned above, talked about the passing of JFK Jr. I remember watching this when it originally aired in 1999. Pete Hamill got super-deep in the interview and he cited the famous William Saroyan line from 1939, which was from "The Time Of Your Life" which said:

"In the time of your life, live–so that in that wondrous time you shall not add to the misery and sorrow of the world, but shall smile to the infinite delight and mystery of it."

– William Saroyan (1939)