President Nixon arrived at Shannon airport on Saturday (October 3) to start his two-day visit to Eire.
President Nixon arrived at Shannon airport on Saturday (October 3) to start his two-day visit to Eire. The Irish Prime Minister, Mr. Jack Lynch was there to welcomed President Nixon. Shortly afterwards the President drove to nearby Limerick.
A crowd of about 2,000 turned out to welcome President nixon on this, the last stop of his five-nation European tour, Mr. and Mrs. Nixon were greeted by Mr. Jack Lynch, the Prime Minister of Eire, External Affairs Minister Patrick Hillery and the American Ambassador John Moore. At the airport, Mr. Nixon made a brief speech in which he said the visit was both official and yet personal.
The security precautions mounted for the arrival were the largest seen in Irish history. Plain-clothes policemen were everywhere, but President Nixon continued his now familiar patter of shaking hands with anyone who was within each.
From Shannon Airport, the President drove the 14-miles (22 Kilometres) to Limerick where, amid more scenes of enthusiastic hand-shaking, he was welcomed by the Mayor. Several thousand flag-waving people lined the streets to give the American President a rousing welcome.
The Limerick Mayor, Councillor Patrick Liddy presented Mr. Nixon with a traditional Blackthorn walking stick. The President responded by climbing on to the boot of his official car to hold the stick above his head and give a typical boxer's salute to the crowd. Mr. Nixon was joined on the car by the Mayor, Mr. Liddy.