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News 24052013. No repro Fee
Haven heroes head to Haiti.  
20 Volunteers departed from Dublin and bidding farewell to them was top Irish chef Clodagh McKenna and George Hook.Pictured with Clodagh and George are Johnny Ryan(left) from Tipperery and Paudie Halpin from Watheford who are two of the volunteers.The Haven volunteers, travelling from across Ireland, will be working directly with the community to rebuild structures that were destroyed after hurricane Sandy last year. Activities during the week will include painting local community amenities, forming drainage channels, building a playground area and regenerating the community garden. Photo Chris Bellew / Copyright 2013 Fennell Photography

News 24052013. No repro Fee Haven heroes head to Haiti. 20 Volunteers departed from Dublin and bidding farewell to them was top Irish chef Clodagh McKenna and George Hook.Pictured with Clodagh and George are Johnny Ryan(left) from Tipperery and Paudie Halpin from Watheford who are two of the volunteers.The Haven volunteers, travelling from across Ireland, will be working directly with the community to rebuild structures that were destroyed after hurricane Sandy last year. Activities during the week will include painting local community amenities, forming drainage channels, building a playground area and regenerating the community garden. Photo Chris Bellew / Copyright 2013 Fennell Photography

Chris Bellew/Fennell Photography

News 24052013. No repro Fee Haven heroes head to Haiti. 20 Volunteers departed from Dublin and bidding farewell to them was top Irish chef Clodagh McKenna and George Hook.Pictured with Clodagh and George are Johnny Ryan(left) from Tipperery and Paudie Halpin from Watheford who are two of the volunteers.The Haven volunteers, travelling from across Ireland, will be working directly with the community to rebuild structures that were destroyed after hurricane Sandy last year. Activities during the week will include painting local community amenities, forming drainage channels, building a playground area and regenerating the community garden. Photo Chris Bellew / Copyright 2013 Fennell Photography

HE was refused a chance to get involved 50 years ago, but broadcaster George Hook will lead the commemoration celebrations for the late US president John F Kennedy's historic visit here.

The Newstalk radio host was 21 when JFK travelled to the country of his ancestors in June, 1963.

"The father of one of my friends was responsible for supplying the cars for the Kennedy entourage and he asked all his mates to be drivers," he recalled.

"There was a rumour going around that I was one of the drivers, but I wasn't good enough, so I wasn't allowed," he told the Irish Independent.

Hook was present for JFK's famous speech in New Ross, Co Wexford. He has now been enlisted, alongside retired RTE newscaster Anne Doyle, as master of ceremonies for 'The Homecoming' official event in New Ross, on June 22.

He will also be among those at Arlington Cemetery in Washington DC next month, for the lighting of The Gathering Torch from the JFK Eternal Flame, and will accompany it as it journeys to Ireland.

"I was in New Ross . . . Obama is a transition year student compared to Kennedy as a speaker," he said.

Irish Independent