Bobby Kennedy, the Attorney General, was only 37 years old during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Despite his age, he was JFK's most trusted adviser. Although his family had constantly teased him when he was young, Robert F. Kennedy had become his own man. He once said:
I was the seventh of nine children and when you come from that far down you have to struggle to survive.
Bobby Kennedy's survivor instincts helped him to be both pragmatic and idealistic. The President valued his counsel.
From his youth, Bobby had been close to his older brother. After JFK returned from World War II a war hero, Bobby wrote to him. One of the letters (handwritten by the younger Kennedy on January 9, 1945 when he was in Naval Training at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine), tells the future President to write a book.
The rumor around New England is that you've "got a book in you."
JFK wrote Why England Sleptsoon after the war was over. A more well-known work, Profiles in Courage, came later. One month after his brother was assassinated, Bobby handwrote a new foreword for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Profiles. Bobby's words are still included in current copies of the book.
The Kennedy brothers were close, but they would need every bit of the strength they drew from each other during those dark days of the Missile Crisis. As usual, the President assigned the toughest jobs to Bobby.