Bud Barnum was one of the pallbearers for President John F. Kennedy

As America marks the 55th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, one former Coast Guard member recounts his time carrying the casket during Kennedy’s funeral proceedings.

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Speaking with KARE11, retired Coast Guard member Bud Barnum recalled how he helped bring President Kennedy’s casket to the White House, Capitol, church and Arlington National Cemetery.

President Kennedy's funeral (Getty)

President Kennedy's funeral (Getty)

Barnum explained how he was chosen to represent his branch of the military, and that he was essentially waiting on a call about the ailing former President Hoover when he was summoned to Andrews Air Base. There, instead, he met the body of the recently assassinated JFK.

“We stayed with the casket all the time,” Barnum said, except for when the team of himself and seven other pallbearers broke away to practice with a different casket.

“We put a person on top of the casket, filled the casket with sandbags and practiced carrying up, keep it level,” Barnum said.

Speaking of the emotional toll of such a duty, Barnum said: “It didn't hit us until it was over.”

“You do your duty, that's it.”

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Following the funeral proceedings, Barnum said his military base received a number of thank you cards, including one from widow Jackie Kennedy.

Jackie Kennedy with children Caroline and John Jr (Getty)

Jackie Kennedy with children Caroline and John Jr (Getty)

He also received numerous requests for autographs, all of which he responded to.

Barnum now hopes that upon his own death, he too will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery where President Kennedy now lies.

President Kennedy's casket at Arlington National Cemetery (Getty)

President Kennedy's casket at Arlington National Cemetery (Getty)

“There's not a better place,” says Barnum.

President John F. Kennedy received an honor guard during his funeralGetty