"President Kennedy had just taken Caroline in to visit the Ambassador, and when we walked out of the elevator, on the ground floor, there was a gumball machine there. Caroline saw it and asked, 'Daddy, may I please have a gumball?'
The President looked at her and said, 'Oh, Buttons, I’m sorry, you need a penny for the gumball machine. I don’t have a penny.' I shook my head in amusement. It was so typical of JFK - he never carried money. Here he was the President of the United States and he didn’t have a penny for the gumball machine.
Paul continued, Poor Caroline looked like she was going to crumble. So the President turned to me and asked, 'Mr. Landis, do you happen to have a penny?' I pulled out the change in my pocket, and fortunately, I did have a penny. As a matter of fact I do, I said as I handed Caroline the penny. Her eyes got big and she said 'Oh, thank you, Mr. Landis!' You’d think I had given her a diamond ring. I could see little Caroline, just as excited as could be over such a simple thing as a gumball.
So she struggled a bit to get the penny into the machine, but she finally did it, and the President helped her turn the knob, and when the gumball rolled out, she just grabbed it and popped it in her mouth and began chewing away, a big smile on her face.
I turned to look at the President and he had a big grin on his face. Then he said, 'Thank you, Mr. Landis. I owe you a penny.'"❤