The days following the assassination of John F. Kennedy were solemn and chaotic. However, these fateful days also brought about some of the most historically significant vehicles of all times. While its job was a sad one, the hearse that carried JFK to Air Force One for his last journey to Washington, DC is one of the most significant vehicles that came out of the tragedy. Almost five decades later, this vehicle will cross the auction block at the Annual Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Auction in January, according to Autoblog. Whether you’re a history buff, Kennedy fan or just a classic car enthusiast, this sale is a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence.
While there was controversy over whether or not the ambulance sold by Barrett-Jackson previously was truly the ambulance that carried JFK’s body from Air Force One to the Bethesda Naval Hospital after his death, the facts surrounding this hearse are more concrete.
The 1964 Cadillac Hearse built by the Miller-Meteor Company was originally displayed at the National Funeral Home Directors Association Convention held in October of 1963. After the show ended, the O’Neal Funeral Home bought the hearse. Just one month later, JFK was assassinated. After JFK was pronounced dead at Parkland Memorial Hospital, the O’Neal Funeral Home was contacted to provide the finest casket available as well as appropriate transportation for the president’s body.
The ‘64 Cadillac Hearse was chosen for the duty. In turn it transported the president’s casket and the First Lady from the hospital to Love Field where Air Force One was waiting to take the casket back to Washington, DC. “The eyes of the world were on this car on that unforgettable day in American history,” said Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson in a recent press release about the sale of the ambulance. “It’s one of the most significant and historical vehicles ever offered for sale.”
The ambulance is listed under Lot #1293 and will cross the auction block in Scottsdale, Arizona on Friday January 20th. The hearse will be sold with no reserve, so the highest bidder of this historically significant vehicle will be able to add it to their collection. If you’re interested in bidding on this vehicle, Barrett-Jackson is currently accepting bidder applications.