Gazing at the Pacific Ocean near Fort Stevens State Park, Robert F. Kennedy’s nostalgia was apparent.
“I can’t believe this is so much like home,” the Massachusetts native said. Soon after, he kicked off his shoes and socks, rolled up his dress pants and ran out toward the ocean.
“You could tell he was like, ‘Oh my God. I needed this,'” said Rita Hankel Lerwick, a teenage volunteer for Kennedy’s Clatsop County campaign team. “I was just shocked.”
On May 24, 1968, Kennedy visited Astoria and other places along the coast during his bid for the Democratic presidential nomination in the Oregon primary.