Since today is Presidents' Day – a day to honor American Presidents – we’d like to acknowledge Dwight D. Eisenhower who served from 1953 to 1961. Here are nine things you might not know about the 34th President of the United States.
1. He was born on October 14, 1890 in Denison, Texas.
On the Texas Historical Commission it says that Eisenhower was the first U.S. President born in Texas, and he was the only one of David and Ida Eisenhower’s seven children born in Texas.
2. He had an appendectomy in 1923.
According to sources, after having several episodes of right lower quadrant pain beginning a year earlier, an examination showed that Eisenhower had "chronic catarrhal appendicitis.”
3. He was the first President who held a televised news conference.
The Baltimore Sun wrote that millions of American TV viewers tuned to watch 28 minutes and 25 seconds of footage from the history-making broadcast in 1955.
4. He was a U.S. Army Five-Star General.
Nine Americans have been promoted to five-star rank. On December 20, 1944, Dwight D. Eisenhower was one of them.
5. He was the first President to ride in a helicopter.
History.com says that on July 12, 1957, Eisenhower became the first President to ride in a two-passenger Bell H-13J helicopter to Camp David.
6. He had a sudden heart attack in September, 1955.
The White House facts state that during a vacation in Colorado, President Eisenhower suffered a heart attack and was rushed to Denver’s Fitzsimmons Army Hospital. He remained in the hospital for nearly seven weeks.
7. He signed the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956, creating what is now known as the interstate highway system.
President Eisenhower considered it one of the most important achievements of his two terms in office, and historians agree.
8. He was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease.
It was documented that President Eisenhower had episodic lower abdominal pain for 33 years after his appendectomy. UTHealth states on May 10, 1956, six months before the election, a small bowel series led to the diagnosis of Crohn’s.
9. He had ileostomy surgery in 1956.
HealthLeader magazine writes that President Eisenhower had ileostomy surgery on June 9, 1956 — less than a month after the Crohn’s diagnosis. He recovered remarkably well, and began conducting official business again five days after the surgery.
“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.
This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.
This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.”
– Dwight D. Eisenhower