View Full Version : Sen. Ted Kennedy dies at the age of 77.

August 26th, 2009, 02:16 AM
Sen. Ted Kennedy dies at age 77 after year-long battle with brain cancer

By Larry Mcshane (http://www.nydailynews.com/authors/Larry%20Mcshane)
Updated Wednesday, August 26th 2009, 1:44 AM
Somodevilla/Getty Sen. Ted Kennedy has passed away at the age of 77.

"Edward M. Kennedy, the husband, father, grandfather, brother and uncle we loved so deeply, died late Tuesday night at home in Hyannis Port (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Hyannis+Port) (Massachusetts (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Massachusetts))," the Kennedy family said in a statement.
Kennedy was diagnosed in May 2008 with a malignant brain tumor, discovered after he suffered a seizure at his family's famous compound in Hyannis (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Hyannis), Mass.

Doctors initially said the cancer could kill Kennedy within a year. But the tough old Democrat fought bravely to outlast the grim prognosis.
His large family took advantage of the extra time.
"It let us have the chance to tell him how much we love him," said his son, Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.) (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Patrick+J.+Kennedy). "And him to be there to hear it."
Kennedy was largely absent from Washington (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Washington%2c+DC) after the diagnosis.
Rumors of his deteriorating condition heated up when Kennedy missed three big August events: His sister Eunice's funeral, the confirmation vote for Sonia Sotomayor (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Sonia+Sotomayor), and the ceremony where he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Kennedy's low-profile over his last month was a dramatic contrast with his tumultuous life.
Thrust into the role of family patriarch by the assassinations of his two brothers, the star-crossed Kennedy endured a heart-rending series of tragedies - several of them self-inflicted.
The Massachusetts Democrat never fully escaped the taint of Mary Jo Kopechne (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Mary+Jo+Kopechne) and Chappaquiddick (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Chappaquiddick). He struggled with alcohol, and suffered through the untimely deaths of nephews David by drug overdose, Michael in a skiing accident and JFK Jr. in a plane crash.
He never reached the White House (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/The+White+House), absorbing a stinging defeat in his 1980 challenge to incumbent Jimmy Carter (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Jimmy+Carter). Critics said he lacked his brother John's intellect and his brother Bobby's passion.

The white-haired Kennedy, with his well-worn visage and thick New England (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/New+England+States) accent, amassed a staggering legacy of legislation that made him one of the nation's most respected senators.
His extraordinary reach covered issues from health care to immigration to gun control; his strident opposition helped doom the 1986 Supreme Court (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/U.S.+Supreme+Court) nomination of Judge Robert Bork (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Robert+Bork).

His "titanic record of legislation," Time Magazine (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Time+Inc.) once wrote, impacted "the lives of virtually every man, woman and child in the country."
His personal demons, which rendered Kennedy equally alluring to gossip columnists and political pundits, receded after his 1992 marriage to second wife Victoria Reggie (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Victoria+Reggie). The aging senator embraced life in the slow lane - along with two new stepchildren.

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Through it all, for four decades after brother Bobby was gunned down during the 1968 presidential race, Ted Kennedy became the compelling public face of the family known worldwide as American royalty.
Edward Moore Kennedy, the grandson of Irish immigrants, was born in Boston (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Boston) in 1932. The boy known as Ted was the ninth and last child of one of Massachusetts' original power couples, multi-millionaire Joseph Kennedy and Rose Fitzgerald (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Rose+Fitzgerald), whose father was once mayor of Boston.
The brood's father was a politically-wired Democrat determined to put a son in the White House. He served as ambassador to England under President Franklin Roosevelt (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Franklin+D.+Roosevelt), and political talk was a staple at the family dinner table.

Tragedy, later a recurring theme, struck early in young Teddy's life: he was just 12 when eldest brother Joe Jr. died in a plane crash during a World War II mission.
Kennedy's first public embarrassment, another recurring theme, came at Harvard (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Harvard+University). He followed brothers John and Bobby to the Ivy League (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Ivy+League) - but was booted in a freshman year cheating scandal.

Kennedy did a two-year Army stint during the Korean War, spending his time - perhaps through paternal influence - in Paris (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Paris).
He returned to graduate from Harvard in 1956; two years later, he was working on brother John's 1958 Senate campaign and marrying Joan Bennett (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Joan+Bennett), a college classmate of his sister Jean.
He helped again in JFK's run for the White House in 1960. Two years later, he virtually inherited his brother's Senate seat, kept warm by JFK's college roommate until Kennedy turned 30 - the required age for a senator.
His opponent for the Democratic nomination, Massachusetts Attorney General Edward J. McCormick Jr. (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Edward+McCormick), delivered a riposte that lingered long after the election: "If your name was simply Edward Moore instead of Edward Moore Kennedy, your candidacy would be a joke."

Kennedy enjoyed the last laugh, winning his first term. He was reelected seven times.
On Nov. 22, 1963, the Kennedy's "Camelot" crashed when JFK was shot to death in Dallas (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Dallas). Kennedy then nearly perished in a 1964 plane crash that killed the pilot and an aide. The senator was pulled from the wreckage with a punctured lung, broken ribs and internal bleeding.
His recovery was followed by more devastation: the Los Angeles (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Los+Angeles) assassination of brother Bobby during the 1968 presidential campaign.
The baby of the four Kennedy brothers was now the last Irishman standing, a ill-fitting mantle he wore uneasily. He was the only one of the brothers to make his 50th birthday.

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On June 8, 1968, he delivered Bobby's eulogy inside St. Patrick's Cathedral (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/St.+Patrick's+Cathedral). Choking back tears, Kennedy asked that his brother "be remembered simply as a good and decent man, who saw suffering and tried to right it, saw war and tried to stop it."
It was a reunion for campaign workers one year later that sent Kennedy's career to its nadir.

Mary Jo Kopechne, 28, had come to Chappaquiddick on July 18, 1969. Kennedy claimed he was driving her to catch the ferry back to Martha's Vineyard (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Martha's+Vineyard) when his car went off a bridge.
He swam to safety and fled the scene, leaving Kopechne to die and taking nine hours to notify authorities. Kennedy eventually pleaded to leaving the scene of an accident, and received a two-month suspended sentence.
The tragedy, with its murky circumstances, submarined Kennedy's presidential for a decade. In 1979, the reluctant heir to Camelot finally mounted his own White House quest against incumbent Carter.
But a decade after Chappaquiddick, while campaigning in Louisville (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Louisville), Ky., Kennedy was greeted by the effigy of a female corpse and a sign reading "KILLER."

Kennedy acknowledged his behavior that summer night remained "irrational and indefensible and inexcusable and inexplicable."
The senator suffered another self-inflicted wound during an interview with television reporter Roger Mudd (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Roger+Mudd), who posed a simple question: "Why do you want to be president?"

Kennedy offered a baffling, meandering reply. "I would basically feel," he concluded, "that it's imperative for this country either move forward, but it can't stand still or otherwise it moves backward."
Kennedy failed to unseat Carter, who lost to Republican Ronald Reagan (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Ronald+Reagan) - although the Massachusetts senator found his voice at the Democratic convention (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Democratic+National+Convention).

"It is the glory and greatness of our tradition to speak for those who have no voice, to remember those who are forgotten, to respond to the frustrations and fulfill the aspirations of all Americans seeking a better life in a better land," he said.
For the next dozen years, Kennedy remained the loudest liberal voice in a conservative GOP (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/U.S.+Republican+Party) federal government, galvanizing his troops for a variety of causes through the decades.

He helped block Reagan Supreme Court nominee Bork in one of his greatest political triumphs, but Kennedy also championed lowering the voting age to 18; the first bipartisan campaign finance bill; increases in the minimum wage; Title XI legislation, requiring colleges to equally fund men's and women's athletics; and the Voting Rights Act (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Voting+Rights+Act) amendments, which increased minority representation in Congress.

His marriage to Joan, who waged a long battle with alcoholism, ended in divorce in 1982. The couple had three children, including future Rhode Island Congressman Patrick. Their eldest son, Edward Jr., lost a leg to cancer in 1973.

He also served as surrogate father to his brother's children, remaining close to Bobby's large family and John's two kids, Caroline and John Jr.
Kennedy's involvement with scandal stretched into the '90s, when he roused nephew William Kennedy Smith (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/William+Kennedy+Smith) to grab a drink on Good Friday 1991.

Smith was subsequently arrested for raping a woman he'd picked up while drinking with Kennedy. The nephew was subsequently acquitted, but the senator was once again tarred.

Kennedy - held up as a national bogeyman by liberal-bashing Republicans - settled in as a senior statesman during the Clinton administration.
His personal life settled down as well, with a subdued Kennedy doting on his new wife and stepchildren.

When the Republicans returned to power in 2000, he remained an outspoken voice for his convictions - most notably voting against the Iraq (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Iraq) war in 2004. "Iraq is George Bush (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/George+W.+Bush)'s Vietnam (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Vietnam)," he said in one particularly prescient comment.

Kennedy, to the end, maintained his sense of humor. Asked in 2006 about his long Senate career, Kennedy replied, "I sort of laugh and say, `I'm going to stay in the Senate until I get the hang of it.'"

August 26th, 2009, 02:26 AM
We all knew it was coming but...
RIP Teddy...
Now who will replace him in the senate?!

August 26th, 2009, 04:26 AM
This leaves daughter Jean as last surviving member of that generation.

By The Associated Press The Associated Press – Wed Aug 26, 5:49 am ET
Joseph Kennedy, the millionaire businessman and one-time ambassador to Great Britain, and his wife, Rose, had nine children. Three became senators and one a president.
Joseph Kennedy died in 1969 at age 81 and Rose died in 1995 at 104.
Their children:
JOSEPH P. KENNEDY JR., 1915-1944
A Navy pilot, died when an explosives-laden bomber he was piloting on a secret World War II mission exploded. Awarded the Navy Cross and the Air Medal.
JOHN F. KENNEDY, 1917-1963
A U.S. senator from Massachusetts before he was elected the 35th president of the United States in 1960. Assassinated in Dallas, 1963. Married Jacqueline Bouvier in 1953.
Institutionalized through most of her life because of mental disability and a failed lobotomy.
Married to William John Robert Cavendish, the Marquess of Hartington. Died in a plane crash; her husband had been killed in World War II.
Founder of the Special Olympics. Married to R. Sargent Shriver Jr., former Peace Corps director and unsuccessful candidate for president in 1976 and vice president in 1972.
Married and divorced from actor Peter Lawford.
ROBERT F. KENNEDY, 1925-1968
Former U.S. attorney general, a U.S. senator from New York and a presidential candidate in 1968. Assassinated in Los Angeles, 1968. Married in 1950 to Ethel Skakel. They had 11 children.
Served five years as ambassador to Ireland in the Clinton administration. Married Stephen Edward Smith in 1956; he died in 1990.
U.S. senator from Massachusetts since 1962. Married Virginia Joan Bennett 1958; divorced 1983. Married Victoria Reggie in 1992.

August 26th, 2009, 07:30 AM
Yeah, when he was unable to attend his sister, Eunice Kennedy's funeral, just about everyone had feared the worst.

A very powerful figure in the political world, he will be missed by all! :(

August 26th, 2009, 10:53 AM
Not meaning any ill will, but I always thought it would be Cirrhosis that got him, not Brain Cancer... :(

One is by ones own choice, the other no one deserves.

User Name
August 26th, 2009, 04:30 PM
Now who will replace him in the senate?!
Maybe Bill Clinton will move to Massachusetts... :rolleyes:

August 26th, 2009, 04:31 PM
Senator Ted, I'm so sorry you're dead.

August 27th, 2009, 03:20 PM
His memorial services is being held now. :(

September 2nd, 2009, 08:54 PM
The Kennedys were part of my life since from forever.
My bookshelves hold 5 linear feet of Kennedy-related material, stuff I've collected over 45 years.
I even met Bobby and had dealings with him before and when he was New York's Senator.

My first memories of Kennedys are from JFK's time as Senator. My Dad, who was VERY political and who maintained a distaste for the Family, would berate anything that "The Damn Democrat" would do, so as a naturally curious New Frontiersman I learned as much about him as I could and I found that I admired him, then I took his side and got into some wonderful political shouting matches with Dad.
I followed his carreer,closely. He represents my political awakening, my personal political puberty.
I remember being busted in the dorm at my prep school after "lights out"-- that also meant no radios-- while listening to the Nixon/Kennedy debates on my transistor radio under the pillow, and I got busted again listening to election results a few months later, at 1 AM.
A note was sent home that I was "insolent". My radio was confiscated.

His Presidency was a wonderful time. Despite my admiration for him, there were some very serious problems--Vietnam, Lyndon Johnson, Civil Rights, Bay of Pigs, Marilyn Monroe, etc--that drifted in and out of his Administration and caused him trouble, LOTS of trouble, like Khruschev and his ICBMs and his Wall....
Still, I love the way he spoke and his laid-back manner, and the ideas that flowed from him were brilliant and would shape the generation to come, passing the torch to a pesky "...New Generation of Americans, born in this Century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace...".
He was gone too soon.

I was home from college for Thanksgiving and was taking a nap in my old bedroom over a rainy noontime when JFK got shot. It's a touchstone of my generation--: "Where were you when Kennedy got shot???", and that's where I was when I heard it, laying around at home, my Dad running up the stairs shouting the news. It was a true "Holy Shit!!!" moment and something that has a BC/AD of it's own. Lots of stuff came before, everything else came after...the first live televised murder, when Ruby shot Oswald, then-- Vietnam, hippies, drugs,anarchy, riots, The Beatles, Charles Manson, more political murder, inflation, and ultimately, Nixon.

Ted was the klutz of the brothers. He was intimately involved in accidental death and drunkenness and seemed to be the Clown Prince, compared to his brothers. He freaking CHEATED at Harvard. He was THERE, he was just kept hidden, like Ringo. The only time you'd see him was at funerals. Even after he got into the Senate, he kept his head down and played Junior Senator.

Well, there was always Bobby to admire. He straightened out Civil Rights and killed off The Mafia, then got thrust into false oblivia by LBJ, only to re-appear as a New Yorker and get within a volley of the Presidency; I really liked him and was planning already to vote for him. I had shaken his hand and had a long conversation with him in Rochester. To this day I have no doubt that Bobby would have lived in the White House, if only he would have survived the election process.
I was in my car when I heard about the murder of Robert Kennedy for the first time. I had to pull over to the side of the road. I had just left a place that was showing his "...Now it's on to Chicago and let's win there" speech, live. It couldn't have happened two minutes after I left, and he was gone and I was on the side of the road, weeping for another Lost Kennedy...

Then, and foreverafter, was Ted. He gave an elegant eulogy at Bobby's funeral that I adapted and used at my Mother's graveside--"...My Brother need not be idealized or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life...".
Klutz no more, I studied him as intently as I did his brothers and I forgave him his excesses. I watched him somehow get re-elected Senator, then saw him never get un-elected.
He remained out there for 45 years, passing landmark legislation and winning the admiration of his Senatorial peers and millions of citizens, even though he balooned up to Jabba The Hut proportions from his excessive alcohol intake and got as liberal as a right- handed amputee.

I guess that's the end. The Kennedy Dynasty is finally gone and won't come back. The younger ones don't seem to have the penchant for the Family Business, so, after nearly 50 years of All Things Kennedy, those stirring chords of Camelot, the orchestra that once played strongly to a generation of Boomers, have faded to background and are to become mere political Muzak.

Goodby Ted, and all you other Kennedys. It's been fun.

September 3rd, 2009, 11:23 PM
Former Red Sox ace Curt Schilling won't rule out making run at Ted Kennedy's Senate seat

By Julian Garcia (http://www.nydailynews.com/authors/Julian%20Garcia)
Updated Thursday, September 3rd 2009, 5:00 PM

Ex-Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling testifies in 2005 before a House Committee hearing investigating steroid use in baseball.

Though the chances of him running are "slim to none," former Red Sox (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Boston+Red+Sox) ace Curt Schilling (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Curt+Schilling) said Thursday that he will not rule out making a bid for the Senate seat that was vacated when Ted Kennedy (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Edward+M.+Kennedy) died last week.
During one of his regular appearances on Boston radio station WEEI-AM, the 42-year-old outspoken conservative said that Massachusetts (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Massachusetts) is in "desperate" need of new political blood.

"This state, next to Illinois (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Illinois), is probably looked on as one of the most corrupt, laughable political scenes in the nation, and it should be just the opposite," said Schilling, who since retiring from baseball last March has spent time with his family and worked on his fledgling video game company, 38 Studios.

"I think there's so much broke here ... I don't think you'd have to look very hard to pick up the pieces of debris and start to reform and fix it," he added.
Schilling won three World Series during his baseball career but has no political experience. However, he hinted that he'd be the perfect candidate for the job, noting that, "My credentials are that I have no baggage."

Reaction to the possibility of a Schilling senate run has been mostly positive in Boston. In a Boston.com (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Boston.com) poll asking readers to name who should succeed Kennedy, Schilling took a commanding lead, nearly seven percentage points ahead of Joe Kennedy II.

Kennedy died from a brain tumor last week at the age of 77. A primary is scheduled for Dec. 8, with a general election to be held on Jan. 19.
Schilling said he would have to make a decision "in relatively short order." He has campaigned for the Republican party but would have to run as an independent because of his "unenrolled" voter status.

"If he runs, good luck," Boston first baseman Kevin Youkilis (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Kevin+Youkilis) said Wednesday. "I don't know if I'd want to do that job."
Red Sox manager Terry Francona (http://www.nydailynews.com/topics/Terry+Francona) gave Schilling his blessing but added that, "I don't think he'd want me as his campaign manager."
Schilling, who has never shied away from controversy, told the radio station that, "The status quo sucks. The status quo is not working."
"The person that works 9-to-5 for crap dollars gets spat on, and it's becoming a state that's next to impossible to live and prosper in, and I think it was anything but when it was founded," Schilling said.

With News Wire Services

September 4th, 2009, 12:56 AM
In Massachusetts? It's a sure strike out. Save your time + money, Curt.