A lovely story about Donald Keough, the former head of Coca Cola and supporter of all things Irish, reached us yesterday via Jim Dwyer's column in the New York Times.
The year was 1995, the venue was New York's storied Tavern on the Green, and Keough was all set to present then U.S. Ambassador to Ireland Jean Kennedy Smith with a giant piece of Waterford Crystal when disaster struck.
Kennedy Smith was being honored by our sister publication Irish America for her work on the cease-fire in the North and the magazine had specially commissioned a crystal creation in the shape of the American flag complete with eagles.
But just before the presentation another (un-named?!) speaker bumped into the crystal as he approached the podium and, you guessed it, the crystal crashed to the ground.
"Mr. Keough looked down at the remains and took a deep breath.
“Madam Ambassador,” he announced, “you’re going to receive more pieces of Irish crystal than anyone in history.”
What a class act.
(And who was the 'un-named' speaker?!)