THE ICONIC RING OF CAROLYN BESSETTE-KENNEDY
Born in 1966, Carolyn Jeanne Bessette-Kennedy was mainly known for three things: she was the wife of John F. Kennedy Jr., she was a highly-successful publicist for Calvin Klein, and almost two decades after her death – she is still considered a style icon. Carolyn died in a plane crash off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard in July 1999, along with her husband and her older sister Lauren.
After college, Bessette worked for Calvin Klein – starting as a saleswoman in Boston to become the director of publicity for the company’s flagship store in Manhattan. Known for her understated style in both dress and jewelry, one of Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy’s most prized possessions was a Van Cleef & Arpels Emerald Ring, given to her by Jackie Kennedy.
The ring was originally given to Jackie by her husband, President John F. Kennedy, for their tenth year wedding anniversary in 1963. It was designed as an “eternity ring” and featured ten emeralds representing each year of their marriage. Several years after the death of JFK, his widow had two of the emeralds removed to make two solitaire rings for her children. One was made for Caroline and the other for John Jr., who gave it to his bride, Carolyn, on the night before their wedding. After the death of her brother, the ring was given back and now Caroline Schlossberg, JFK’s daughter, owns it.