1920 (20th February)
Kathleen Kennedy was born to Kathleen Agnes Kennedy to Joseph Patrick Kennedy Sr
and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy
at Brookline, Massachusetts. She was known to the family as Kick because of her rebellious nature. Kathleen was the couple’s 4th child, her brothers Joe and John and sister Rose Marie had been born earlier.
1921 (10th July)
Kathleen’s sister, Eunice Mary, was born.
1924 (6th May)
Kathleen’s sister Patricia Helen (known as Pat) was born.
1925 (20th November)
The Kennedy family moved to Riverdale, New York to avoid an outbreak of polio.
Kathleen attended Riverdale Country School.
1928 (20th February)
Kathleen’s sister Jean Ann was born.
The Kennedy family moved to Bronxville, New York.
Kathleen attended the Noroton Convent of the Sacred Heart in Greenwich, Connecticut.
1932 (22nd February)
Kathleen’s brother Edward Moore (known as Ted) was born.
Kathleen spent a year at the Holy Child Convent in Neuilly, France.
Joe Kennedy Sr was appointed ambassador to the United Kingdom.
Kathleen went to London with her father, Mother and two elder brothers. She attended Queen’s College in London.
1938 (12th May)
Kathleen was presented as a debutante at the annual Queen Charlotte’s Ball.
Kathleen served on a number of committees organising social events.
Kathleen Kennedy met William Cavendish, Marquess of Hartington.
The Kennedy children and their mother returned to the United States after Britain declared war on Germany.
Kathleen attended the Finch School in New York.
Kathleen Kennedy attended the Florida Commercial College.
Kennedy joined the Red Cross in New York as a volunteer. She organised events to raise money for British servicemen disabled in the war..
Having decided to leave school, Kathleen began working for the Times-Herald newspaper in Washington DC as a research assistant.
Kathleen wanted to support the war effort in Britain and decided to rejoin the Red Cross in London. She began a training course with the Red Cross.
1943 (25th June)
Kathleen Kennedy sailed for London.
After arriving in England Kathleen began working for the Red Cross. She worked as a Program Assistant at Hans Crescent, a London club that supported military officers.
Kennedy reconnected with William Cavendish who she had met when previously in London in 1938. Her mother did not approve of the relationship since Cavendish was not a Catholic.
Joe Kennedy Jr, Kathleen’s elder brother, who had joined the airforce, was sent to Britain with Bomber Squadron 110.
1944 (early May)
Kathleen Kennedy resigned her position with the Red Cross because she was due to marry William Cavendish and become Lady Hartington.
1944 (6th May)
Kathleen Kennedy married William Cavendish, Lord Hartington at Caxton Hall Register Office. Her elder brother Joe was the only family member to attend the family.
Kathleen’s brother Joe had completed his required number of missions and was eligible to be discharged. However, rather than return to the United States, he decided to extend his time in the services and volunteered for a secret bombing mission over Normandy.
1944 (13th June)
William Cavendish, Kathleen’s husband, was called up to serve in the British army in France.
1944 (12th August)
Joe Kennedy Jr was killed when the plane he was flying for the secret bombing mission exploded over Dunwich Forest Suffolk.
1944 (10th September)
William Cavendish was killed by a sniper bullet while fighting in Belgium.
Kathleen had decided to remain in England and resumed her work as a volunteer with the Red Cross.
Lady Hartington returned to the United States to visit her family. Afterwards she returned to London.
Kathleen began a relationship with wealthy businessman, Peter Fitzwilliam. Fitzwilliam was married and in the process of divorcing his wife. Joe Sr and Rose Kennedy were furious and threatened to disown their daughter.
1948 (early May)
Kathleen Kennedy learned that her father would be in Paris and arranged to meet him on 15th May to try to persuade him to give his consent to her marriage.
1948 (13th May)
Kathleen Kennedy and Peter Fitzwilliam had decided to spend two days on the French Riviera before meeting Joe Kennedy Sr. While flying to the South of France, a storm blew up and the plane crashed in the mountains killing all on board.