Bobby Kennedy Robert Kennedy RFK Ambassador Hotel 1968
Robert Kennedy at the Ambassador Hotel on the night of his death, June 5, 1968. (Photo: Getty Images)

Robert "Bobby" Kennedy was President John F. Kennedy's younger brother, whom JFK named U.S. attorney general in 1961. After his brother's assassination in November 1963, Bobby served under President Lyndon B. Johnson for nine months, then won a U.S. Senate seat from New York. Kennedy was considered a front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1968, and had won three primaries when he was killed.

When did Bobby Kennedy die?

Bobby Kennedy died on June 5, 1968, making this year the 50th anniversary of his death. He had won the California primary that night and had just finished thanking supporters at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles when he was shot in the head by an assassin. Kennedy lost consciousness shortly thereafter and died the next day.

His killer was Sirhan Sirhan, a 24-year-old Palestinian activist who disapproved of Kennedy's vocal support for Israel during 1967's Six-Day War. Sirhan was convicted of murder and was sentenced to death in 1969; that was changed to life imprisonment when California overturned the death penalty in 1972.

How old was Bobby Kennedy when he died?

Kennedy was 42 when he died. He was survived by his wife, Ethel, and 11 children, one of whom was born a few months after his death. Ethel, 90, is still active in advocacy and humanitarian work but rarely speaks to the press.

 

As the 50th anniversary of RFK's death approaches, his son Sen. Robert F. Kennedy has made headlines for doubting the official conclusion that Sirhan was the lone gunman who killed his father. Last weekend, the Senator told the Washington Post that after researching his father's killing, he met with Sirhan face-to-face last year and believes he was wrongly accused. "I didn't feel it was something I could dismiss," said Kennedy. "I was disturbed that the wrong person might have been convicted of killing my father." Kennedy has called for a new investigation, CBS News reports.

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