In an announcement Saturday, Mr. Kennedy mentioned the occasion was supposed “to honor Cesar Chavez and his shut friendship with my father, my household and me, and his influence on our nation.” In an interview Sunday, he mentioned he had repeatedly reached out to family members within the weeks earlier than the occasion, however heard nothing till reporters known as on Friday in regards to the letter, which he mentioned the marketing campaign by no means truly obtained. (The letter was emailed on Friday to the marketing campaign’s press workplace handle, a household spokesman mentioned.)

“After all, if they’d requested me, we’d have carried out one thing else, very, very simply,” Mr. Kennedy mentioned. “If folks within the household had wished us to cancel the occasion, it could have been fairly simple for them to select up the telephone.”

Mr. Kennedy’s father fashioned a bond with Chavez within the mid-Nineteen Sixties, when he was a senator, and have become the primary nationwide political determine to embrace Chavez and the farm labor motion he was working to construct. In March 1968, Robert F. Kennedy famously sat with Chavez as he ended a 25-day quick he undertook to make penance, he mentioned, for the violent rhetoric of some strikers.

In 1980, when Mr. Kennedy’s uncle, Ted Kennedy, was searching for the Democratic nomination for president, Chavez and his household — together with Fernando Chavez — labored with the Kennedy household, together with Robert F. Kennedy Jr., on Latino voter mobilization, Fernando Chavez and the youthful Mr. Kennedy each recalled.

At Cesar Chavez’s 1993 funeral, the youthful Mr. Kennedy was among the many individuals who took turns carrying the coffin. The Chavez household letter expressed gratitude for these pallbearers, however famous that whereas different elected officers and future political candidates had been amongst them, “To our information, none of them have featured pictures carrying the casket of their political marketing campaign supplies and promotions. We take offense at the usage of such sacred moments purely for political functions.”

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