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March 4, 2021

Ep. 25: The Kennedy Curse & the Chappaquiddick Incident

Is it possible for a whole family to be cursed?
Some people think so. In fact, there's one particular family in United States history many have asserted IS the victim of a curse - the Kennedys.
From political assassinations to plane crashes to tragic...

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Is it possible for a whole family to be cursed?

Some people think so. In fact, there's one particular family in United States history many have asserted IS the victim of a curse - the Kennedys.

From political assassinations to plane crashes to tragic accidents and even murder investigations, the Kennedys have lived under a dark cloud since the mid-20th century. Though blessed with wealth, power, privilege, good looks, and charm, death and calamity has never been far behind this American political dynasty. From the public killing of President John F. Kennedy Jr. to the plane crash death of his son JFK Jr., the Kennedys have seen enough darkness for some to claim they are "cursed". But is this true? And if so, where did the curse originate?

Carrie takes us through the events spanning the curse and dives particularly deeply into a very grey area in the Kennedy timeline - the Chappaquiddick Incident, a 1969 car accident that left one woman dead and the driver, Ted Kennedy, wondering "whether some awful curse did actually hang over all the Kennedys." 
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We’re here Sean, the big 2-5! 

For this milestone episode I decided to cover a milestone family in American history - the Kennedys. And, more specifically, the purported “curse” that surrounds them, along with a little extra coverage of the Chappaquiddick Incident.

I assume you’ve heard of the Kennedy Curse?

Right. The Kennedy family - the most famous member of which is, of course, President John F. Kennedy - has experienced what seems to be an unprecedented number of horrible tragedies since they became relevant in the American consciousness during the mid-20th century. When there’s a Wikipedia page for the supposed curse on your family that also states “Political assassinations and plane crashes have been the most common manifestations of the curse”, you know you’re in for a wild ride. Many of us know the big events...but the other strange coincidences and calamities really add up to make this a very eerie story. Though most accounts of the relevant “curse” events start with Joseph P. Kennedy Sr., I’m actually going to back up a big from him - to the land of your forefathers, Sean.

This story, recounted by a local to the journalist, comes from Ireland’s The Big Issue, which is a street newspaper that originated in the UK and is distributed in 9 different countries. Now, keep in mind the only source for this legend comes from this article, but I figured it was fun enough to include. It goes basically like this:

Ireland, the 1830s. Thomas “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald had long had a vision of gold buried in a place surrounded by mountains and lakes, or so he said. He traveled around the country searching for this particular place, and during his search he met a man in Galway City who pointed him toward the Maam Turks and the Twelve Bens mountain range, saying that the area Fitz was describing was the town of Ourid, and they had a local myth about buried gold, too. In Ourid, which was in County Galway, life for the once “golden village” had become grim. This didn’t deter Honey Fitz however - in fact, he moved to Ourid and befriended people for miles around, trying to get any information he could on his quest for the treasure. One night Fitz and a group of neighbors came upon a dying woman in the road, and brought her inside for the night in a local herdsman’s house. When the woman woke the next morning, she examined a big black pot hanging in the hearth that had writing in the Ogham language on it - an early Medieval language that was used primarily to write the early Irish language. She told them the writing on the pot read “The other side of the tree is just as good.” Apparently this pot was found by Fitzgerald under a certain hawthorn tree (I think), so he returned to where he found the pot and dug on the other side. This is when he finally found the gold he had been dreaming of, buried under the tree. He shared his hoard of gold coins with the O’Malleys and some other neighbors. 

However, according to the legend, the gold was supposed to be very unlucky, and people were afraid to touch them. It’s said that the gold coins brought down terrible luck onto the entire village, starting soon after with O’Malley’s wife, who poisoned herself and died. The village was wiped out by famine and “the Big Wind” in 1839, and was wiped out from 40 houses to just 1. This didn’t stop Honey Fitz, though. He and others who benefited from the discovery used the gold to journey to America, supposedly taking the bad luck out of Ourid and with him. They say the bad luck that follows the Kennedys is originally from that gold. 

As for Honey Fitz, he immigrated to Boston, married, and became a successful businessman. His son, John Fitzgerald, became a Congressman for Massachusetts and Mayor of Boston. And his granddaughter, Rose, was JFK’s mother. Which brings us to…

Rose’s husband, Joseph P. Kennedy Sr., was a prominent American businessman, investor, and politician. The Kennedy legacy begins with him - and joins the perhaps cursed, perhaps blessed legacy of the Fitzgeralds. Joe Kennedy Sr. was...a personality. He was born to an already political Boston family, the Kennedys, and his father Patrick Joseph Kennedy served in the Massachusetts legislature. Joe amassed a fortune in banking and trading which he grew even larger with investments, and served in various political roles including as US Ambassador to the UK during the lead-up to WW2. Kennedy was pessimistic about Britain’s ability to survive attacks from Nazi Germany and supported Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s policy of appeasement, seeking out meetings with Adolf Hilter multiple times. Controversy about Kennedy began here, with him telling a British reporter in late 1939 that he was confident that Roosevelt would fall in 1940, and publicly stating during the Battle of Britain in November 1940 that “Democracy is finished in England. It may be here [in the United States].”  After this, Kennedy resigned from his ambassadorship, his hopes dashed for succeeding Franklin Roosevelt in the White House in 1940.

Here is where the curse takes hold.

Joe and Rose had 9 children - gotta love those Irish Catholics! - Joe Jr, John, Rosemary, Kathleen, Eunice, Patricia, Robert, Jean, and Ted. Rosemary was institutionalized in 1941, as Joe Sr. was worried her “mood swings” would tarnish the family reputation. By all accounts Rosemary was perhaps a little slow, with some emotional problems and seizures, but the scope of her disabilities has been questioned, as despite her being intellectually stunted she still enjoyed a fairly normal social life and had her own interests. However, this wasn’t good enough for demanding Joe, and he was humiliated by his daughter’s mental and emotional setbacks. Joe decided Rosemary should have a lobotomy - a decision he didn’t inform his wife of until after the procedure was completed. Unfortunately the procedure was not only unsuccessful, but tragically damaging: Rosemary’s mental capacity diminished to that of a 2 year old child, and she was now unable to walk or speak intelligibly. She lived in institutions for the rest of her life, hidden away from the public at large. Her mother didn’t visit her again for 20 years, and Joe himself never visited her once she was institutionalized. Her siblings only learned of her lobotomy and location in 1961, and the whole story didn’t become public knowledge until 1987.

Joseph Kennedy Jr. was Joe’s great hope for the family, the oldest son, the one who bore his name, and the one groomed for great things. Joe Sr. hoped he would be the first Roman Catholic president, and was a Massachusetts delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1940. Jr had some, uh, questionable views, including that Hitler’s sterilization policy was”a great thing” that “will do away with many of the disgusting specimens of men.” He also wrote to his father, after visiting Nazi Germany in 1934, that “Hitler is building a spirit in his men that could be envied in any country,” which, yikes.

Joe Jr. was killed in action during World War 2 in 1944 while serving as a land-based patrol bomber pilot, when his BQ-8 aircraft accidently exploded over East Suffolk, England. Tragically by this time Kennedy had completed 25 combat missions and was eligible to return home, but he had chosen instead to volunteer for another mission under Operation Aphrodite. 

Kathleen Kennedy, the 2nd oldest Kennedy daughter, had married an Englishman named William Cavendish, Marquess of Hartington, eldest son and heir apparent of the 10th Duke of Devonshire in 1944. Her husband died only four months later during active service in Belgium, and Kathleen herself died in yet another plane crash in 1948 during a flight to the south of France while on vacation with her new partner, the 8th Earl Fitzwilliam. This would be the second plane-related death in the Kennedy family, and not the last.

But, hey! The curse laid off for awhile after this, with John Fitzgerald Kennedy - the next oldest brother and the one tapped by Joe Sr. to replace golden boy Joe Jr. as his great hope - becoming the president of the United States in 1960. We did it, you guys! 

The good fortune wouldn’t last for long, though. Joe Sr. suffered a severe stroke in 1961, leaving him paralyzed on his right side and severely affecting his ability to speak. I won’t comment on the irony here, considering what he had done to Rosemary, buuuut...

Usually included in the list of “curse” related deaths is that of Patrick Bouvier Kennedy, the second son of JFK and his wife, Jackie. Patrick, born prematurely, lived only 39 hours before dying from complications of hyaline membrane disease, sending the nation into mourning. John and Jackie had already had a stillborn baby girl, Arabella, in 1956, and though they’d had 2 healthy children after that - Caroline and John Jr. - this second loss was understandably horrific for both. Patrick’s birth on August 7th marked 20 years to the day that John had been rescued by the US Navy after spending 5 days marooned on an island in the Pacific after the sinking of torpedo boat PT-109 during World War 2.  

Next comes the tragedy that needs no introduction - JFK’s assassination on November 22nd, 1963. I’m not going to go too deep into this, because it deserves multiple episodes all its own, but we all know the jist: President Kennedy, during a motorcade in Dallas Texas, was shot and killed by - supposedly - lone nut Lee Harvey Oswald. Oswald himself was killed by Jack Ruby 2 days later. This assassination ended what had been hoped to be a Kennedy presidential dynasty, and the hope of “Camelot” in the White House. 

Never fear! Robert F. Kennedy, now the oldest son and Attorney General of the US under his brother John, decided to take up the mantle of Kennedy politico and run for president himself in 1968. RFK was an advocate for the civil rights movement and fought against organized crime and the Mafia and was much beloved in the Democratic party. Most folks thought he would be the Democratic presidential nominee...but shortly after winning the California primary on June 5th, 1968, he was assassinated by Sirhan Sirhan, a 24-year-old Palenstinian man reportedly angered by his support for Israel following the 6-Day War in 1967. This assassination is also the subject of many conspiracy theories that I won’t get into today, but it was yet another shock for the Kennedys and the nation, and dramatically recalibrated the hopes of the family yet AGAIN mere years after his brother’s public death. These weren’t the only tragedies in RFK’s immediate family to that point, however - both of his wife Ethel’s parents died in October 1955 in...a plane crash.

Speaking of, in 1964 Ted Kennedy, the youngest child and at this point at US Senator, survived a plane crash that killed one of his aides as well as the pilot. Ted spent the next 5 months in a hospital recovering from a broken back, punctured lung, broken ribs, and internal bleeding. Following the crash, RFK had remarked to an aide: “Somebody up there doesn’t like us.”

Speaking of THAT…

We arrive at the story I will spend the most time on this episode. The Chappaquiddick incident...AFTER THE BREAK.


So, the Chappaquiddick Incident, or as it’s sometimes known, simply Chappaquiddick. What is this strangely-named event, you may ask? 

We’re back to Ted Kennedy, here. As I mentioned before the break, Ted survived a plane crash in 1964 and by July 1969 had also survived all 3 of his older brothers to become the only Kennedy son left in the family and a United States Senator for the state of Massachusetts. At the time of the incident, he was planning a run at the White House in 1972. Ted and his cousin, Joseph Gargan, traditionally would race Kennedy’s sailboat in the annual Edgartown Yacht Club Regatta each summer off of Martha’s Vineyard, but had missed the event the year earlier due to the assassination of RFK in June 1968. So summer 1969 was supposed to be the return to some sort of normalcy for the men - aged 37 and 39 - and their compatriots. Gargan rented a place called Lawrence Cottage for the weekend on nearby Chappaquiddick Island, which was accessible by ferry from Edgartown on Martha’s Vineyard. They also hosted a cookout party the first night of the Regatta, Friday July 18th, and invited a group of women called the “Boiler Room Girls”. The Boiler Room Girls were 6 women who had served on RFK’s 1968 presidential campaign and had become very close to the family; Kennedy and Gargan wanted to reunite the group presumably to create some positive new memories to replace the tragic previous summer. Oh, and also? Going on at this exact time? Apollo 11 had launched that week, and was due to make its historic landing on the moon that very Sunday. The moon landing mission was John F. Kennedy’s dream, and happened because of him. It finally occurring in 1969 was a massive reminder to all the Kennedys and their associates of the power and promise the family had once held, and how long the shadow of JFK still loomed over them. 

So, the Boiler Room Girls. These were Mary Jo Kopechne, Rosemary Keough, Esther Newberg, Nance and Mary Ellen Lyons, and Susan Tannenbaum. Perhaps conveniently for the men - who were both married at this point - all the girls were in their 20s and single. Other attendees of the cookout party included Paul Markham, a school friend of Gargan’s and former US Attorney for Massachusetts, John B Crimmins, a longtime political associate of Kennedy’s, attorney Charles Tretter, and Raymond La Rosa, who had worked on Ted’s Senate campaigns. Wives were not invited to the weekend. Most of the men had rooms for the weekend at the Shiretown Inn near the Edgartown ferry slip, and the women had rooms at the Katama Shores motor inn about 2 miles away from there.

As the cookout went on, what we know about the truth of what happened that night becomes fuzzier, especially since much of the retelling comes from Ted Kennedy himself. But pieced together it goes somewhat like this: According to Kennedy, Mary Jo Kopechne - Boiler Room Girl and vital data tracker and campaign aide to RFK - asked him to give her a ride back to the girls’ hotel in Katama, Martha’s Vineyard. Kennedy requested the keys to his own car, which he didn’t usually drive, from John Crimmins, who was acting that weekend as the group’s go-to chauffeur. Though he wasn’t wearing a watch, Kennedy puts the time they left Lawrence Cabin at about 11:15 PM. Kennedy was intending to make the last ferry to Edgartown, which would be leaving Chappaquiddick Island around midnight. Strangely, Kopechne told no one else she was leaving for the night with Kennedy, and actually left her purse and hotel room key at the party, which is probably not something you’d do if you weren’t coming back before the next day. Unless, maybe, you were super drunk. I just don’t know.

The film about the incident, Chappaquiddick, which came out in 2018, hints at some sexual tension between Ted and Mary Jo, with him trying to convince her to come join his office and eventual presidential campaign. This was conjecture, but the filmmakers behind the movie 
In the film, it seems more like they left the party together to talk or flirt or whatever, but were planning on going back when Ted decided to bring them down to the beach. Ted later claimed that as soon as he left the party with Mary Jo, he headed a half mile north on Chappaquiddick Road, and mistakenly made an incorrect right turn onto a dirt road, named Dike Road, instead of bearing left on the paved Chappaquiddick Road toward the ferry landing. However, Deputy Sherriff Christopher Look left work by 12:30 AM that night, and around 12:30 AM saw a dark four-dour sedan driven by a man with a woman in the front seat approaching and passing slowly in front of him. The car then drove off the pavement onto another dirt road, Cemetery Road, and stopped. Look called out to the car offering help for who he assumed was a lost driver, but it quickly reversed and veered eastward onto Dike Road. Look stated the license plate began with an L and contained 2 7’s, which Kennedy’s at the time did. If the Deputy’s version of events is true, it leaves more than an hour of Kennedy’s time with Mary Jo unaccounted for before the crash. And, of course, directly contradicts Kennedy’s assertion that they went directly toward the ferry once they left Lawrence Cottage.

Whenever it happened, Ted and Mary Jo continued down Dike Road to Dike Bridge, a very thin angular wooden bridge connecting to an area of sand dunes. The bridge had no guardrails. A moment before he reached the bridge, Ted hit the brakes but lost control of the car, flipping it over into the channel of water under the bridge. The car sunk until it came to a stop resting on its roof. 

Here’s where the only account we have for what happened is Ted’s, and so we can’t be sure of the truth - but he stated that he was able to swim free of the sinking car, but Mary Jo was not. He said he called her name several times from shore and tried to swim down to reach her 7 or 8 times, but was not able. He then rested on the bank for around 15 minutes until he returned to Lawrence Cottage on foot. During this 15 minute walk, he said he didn’t see any houses with lights on, and though his walk took him past 4 houses from which he could have telephone for help with rescuing Mary Joe, he did not knock on any of the doors or attempt this. The first of these houses was occupied by Sylvia Malm and her family, and Malm later stated that she was home, with a phone, and had left a light on at the residence when she went to bed that evening, so he should’ve seen it.

Ted arrived back at the cabin, drenched and in shock. He called for Joe Gargan and Paul Markham to come out to speak with him. At this point, the film asserts that Ted told Joe something to the effect of, “I’m not going to be president.” He then led them to the crash site. Joe and Paul dove repeatedly into the pond to try and rescue Mary Jo but weren’t able to due to a strong tidal current and the incredible darkness underwater. The men also insisted multiple times to Ted that the crash had to be reported to the authorities, and all 3 debated what to do once they arrived at the ferry landing after their rescue efforts were a bust. 

At this point, while they were still trying to figure out what to do, Ted suddenly dove into the channel at the ferry landing and began to swim back to Edgartown, a distance of about 500 feet. Instead, AGAIN, of going to the police once he reached land, Ted returned to his hotel room, removed his clothes, and collapsed on his bed. The film asserts that Joe and Paul actually rowed him back to Edgartown, and Ted told them he would be reporting it - ostensibly why the 2 men did not at that point.

After Ted got back to land, Joe Gargan and Paul Markham drove their rental car back to Lawrence Cottage, arriving back around 2AM. They told no one what happened, and when questioned by other guests said that Kennedy had swum back to Edgartown and Mary Jo was probably back at her hotel. Around this time, the film has Ted calling Joe Kennedy Sr. to tell him something bad had happened, and that he needed his help. The best help Joe Sr. gives Ted at this point is one word: “alibi”. Again, we don’t know this really happened, but the filmmakers seem to think something similar might have. Because, after being at the hotel room for some time, Ted put on dry clothes, left his room, and asked someone nearby what the time was, which was around 2:30 AM. Some think he did this to place himself at the hotel at that time in case he did want to use it as an alibi.

At 7:30 AM the next morning, Saturday, Kennedy was seen talking casually to the winner of the previous day’s sailing race, giving no indication that something was wrong. A half hour after that, Joe and Paul crossed back to Edgartown on the ferry and met up with Ted.

Around this time over on Chappaquiddick, a man and his son fishing off of the Dike Bridge area spotted the submerged car in the pond and summoned the authorities. Police Chief Dominick Arena arrived around 8:30 AM, then summoned a trained rescue scuba diver and other equipment with the Edgartown Fire Rescue unit. John Farrar, the captain, arrived around 8:45 AM and dove down to the wreck, discovering Kopechne’s body in the back seat and retrieving it within 10 minutes. At this point, the police also realized the sunken car belonged to Kennedy.

Kennedy, Gargan, and Markham at this time crossed back to Chappaquiddick Island on the ferry, where Kennedy made several phone calls from the pay phone at the Island side ferry landing. He was calling different friends and lawyers for advice on what to do, STILL not notifying authorities about the accident. Among the people he called were his brother in law Stephen Edward Smith and congressman John V Turney. He was still making calls when he heard the car and Kopechne had been discovered. At this point, him and Markham crossed BACK to Edgartown yet again to go to the police station, with Gargan going to the Katama Shores in where the girls were staying to tell them what had happened. Then, finally, Ted Kennedy gave his statement on the accident to Chief Arena. An autopsy was not done, and Mary Jo’s body was released to her family for burial. 

The real horrific thing about this story is this: most assumed Mary Jo died of drowning, but the coroner and the police diver both thought that she had survived the crash and was down there for possibly hours, with the diver stating that when he found her body she was holding herself up, as if trying to breathe in the air pocket in the back seat. The diver said that, if he had been called, she would’ve been rescued within a half hour - and, considering there was enough air to have lasted her 3 to 4 hours, this means she could’ve survived if Ted had reported the accident immediately, or at the very least once he got back to Lawrence Cottage. But he didn’t, and this means she could’ve been slowly suffocating in the sunken car for up to four hours. Foam and blood around Mary Jo’s mouth pointed to this to the coroner, and very little water was in her lungs, which led them to feel that she had not breathed any in while she was alive - aka, drowning. So Mary Jo likely suffocated, with diver John Farrar stating she probably lived for at least two hours this way. A truly horrifying death.

The aftermath of the accident was pretty terrible. Kennedy went straight to the family compound in Hyannis Port to try and figure out what to do next. He was arraigned a week after the incident and plead guilty to a charge of leaving the scene of an accident causing bodily injury. His attorneys argued that any jail time should be suspended and the prosecutors agreed, citing his age - 37 - character, and prior reputation. He was sentenced to 2 months in prison, suspended sentence. The judge stated at the time, “he has already been, and will continue to be punished far beyond anything this court can impose.”

Kennedy gave a speech on television the same evening, and I’ll play a little of that for you now. Here he’s talking about his scrambled state of mind in the immediate aftermath of the accident and, I guess, vaguely trying to understand his own inexplicable actions.

[SPEECH - curse quote 4:50-5:30]

An inquest followed, with exhumation of Mary Jo’s body being opposed by her parents. A grand jury investigation followed as well. No indictments were issued, but after the motor vehicles investigation, Ted’s license was suspended for at least 6 months. So, uh, I guess there’s that. 

There are a couple of fringe theories about what happened in this case. Journalist Jack Olsen’s investigative book on the case, The Bridge at Chappaquiddick, claims that according to Bernie Flynn, a state police detective assigned to the Cape Cod district attorney’s office, Kennedy got out of the car and Kopechne drove the car off the bridge herself, being too short to see it coming up in the dark. In yet another book, the more recent Chappaquiddick Speaks, author Bill Pinney presented a theory that Mary Jo had actually been seriously injured in an earlier crash, and the bridge accident was faked. I assume this could’ve been corroborated by injuries to Mary Jo’s body, but this seems to be the only place where this theory is found.

Ted Kennedy was re-elected to his senate seat in 1970, but did not run for president from 1972-1976. In 1979, Ted challenged President Jimmy Carter for the Democratic nomination in the 1980 election. He lost, and never attempted to run for president again. However, Ted won seven re-elections to the US Senate and remained a senator until his death in 2009, gaining a reputation as the “Lion of the Senate”. 

Sadly, the Chappaquiddick Incident would not be the last tragedy to haunt the Kennedy family. Joseph P Kennedy II, eldest son of RFK, was the driver of a Jeep during an accident in 1973 that caused his passenger, Pam Kelley, to become permanently paralyzed. Also in 1973 Edward M Kennedy Jr, son of Ted and only 12 years old at the time, lost a leg to amputation as a result of bone cancer. David Kennedy, another child of RFK’s, died of a drug overdose in a Palm Beach Florida hotel room in 1984. Also in Palm Beach, this time in 1991, William Kennedy Smith, son of Jean Kennedy, was arrested and charged with the rape of a young woman at the Kennedy estate. He was later acquitted, but this case brought up a rumor that he had been present at the Skakel home in Greenwich Connecticut on the night of the murder of 15 year old Martha Moxley, who was last seen alive with the Skakels. 

To this point, Moxley’s murder had been unsolved. It had occurred on October 30th, 1975, and her body had been discovered beneath a tree in her family’s backyard. She had been beaten and stabbed with a broken six-iron golf club that was found by the body - a golf club that was traced back to the Skakel home. Though Thomas and Michael Skakel were only teenagers, because they were the last ones to see Martha alive and significantly changed their alibis in the following years, suspicion followed them. However, they weren’t arrested...at least, until Michael Skakel finally was arrested in January of 2000. Now, we might go into this murder another time on the podcast, because it’s local for us and has a lot of fascinating twists and turns...but as in remains now, neither Skakel brother nor anyone else is in jail for the murder of Martha Moxley. 

Past this long, strange case…

Michael Lemoyne Kennedy, sixth child of RFK and wife Ethel Skakel - yeah, RFK had like 11 kids, so there were a bunch - died in a tragic skiing accident in Aspen, Colorado in 1997. 

The most major recent entry into the Kennedy Curse collective came in 1999, and I remember very well when this happened, though I was only about 8 years old. John F Kennedy Jr, at this time an incredibly beloved public icon and the current great hope of the Kennedy family, died incredibly tragically and unexpectedly when the plane he was piloting to Martha’s Vineyard crashed off the coast of Massachusetts, also killing his wife Carolyn and sister in law Lauren Bessette. JFK Jr was handsome, charismatic, and seen as the perfect melding of his two beloved parents: John F Kennedy and Jaqueline Bouvier. A lawyer, journalist, and magazine publisher, JFK Jr was at the height of his fame at the time of his death, and the entire nation mourned as the search for the plane’s wreckage was carried out. Eerily, piloting was something his mother Jackie had always asked him NOT to do, making him promise before her death that he would not take flying lessons because of her fear he’d die in a plane crash. He waited until her passing in 1994 to start learning to fly. We could only wish he had heeded her warnings. Now, of course, if you listened to our “Real Candy Man” episode a little while ago, you would’ve heard our news segment on the conspiracy theory that most recently surrounded JFK Jr...that he’d faked his death and was actually both the head of QAnon and going to reveal himself in time for Donald Trump’s re-election. As we know on the other side of election day, in March 2021 now, that...didn’t happen. But it just proves the lost potential of his life, and what people STILL hope for it. 

Since JFK Jr’s passing, more tragedy has plagued the family - Kara Kennedy, daughter of Ted, died of a heart attack in 2011 while exercising in  Washington DC health club. Mary Richardson Kennedy, ex wife of RFK Jr, committed suicide in 2012. Saoirse Kennedy Hill, granddaughter of RFK, died of an accidental drug overdose at the Kennedy Compound in Hyannis Port, Massachusetts in 2019. And, most recently, Maeve Kennedy McKean, another granddaughter of RFK, went missing with her 8 year old son Gideon in April 2020 during a canoe trip in the Chesapeake Bay. Sadly, their bodies were found days later. 

It seems the darkness still haunts the Kennedy family even to this day.

Some very fringe conspiracies for the cause of the supposed Kennedy Curse include that the family was cursed by a - and I’m sorry for the slur, here, I wasn’t sure what other word to use - a Gypsy curse, put on Kennedy family back in Ireland or Joe Kennedy Sr. himself in America when they were ordered to move out of land or a building that they owned. There’s also the original myth that I recalled at the beginning of our episode, which very interestingly doesn’t start with the Kennedy family at all but with that of Rose Fitzgerald. There’s also yet another theory that it goes back to the Kennedys originally making their money on the bootlegging business and other dark dealings, and that this has left its mark on the family’s luck forever.

So the question is, Sean, do you think there’s something more nefarious at play here? And, going back to Chappaquiddick, what do you think really happened?



Back at it again with Cryin’ Saucers!

Last weekend American Airlines flight 2292 from Cincinnati to Phoenix reported over radio that a long, cylindrical object looking almost like a cruise missile shot quickly over the plane at 1:19 PM on Sunday.

This radio transmission was accidentally intercepted by blogger Steve Douglass, who pinpointed the plane’s location - 37,000 feet in the air over the northeast corner of New Mexico.

On Monday, the Federal Aviation Administration, or FAA, released a statement saying “a pilot reported seeing an object over New Mexico shortly after noon local time on Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021. FAA air traffic controllers did not see any object in the area on their radarscopes.”

The FBI also released a statement of their own, saying "While our policy is to neither confirm nor deny investigations, the FBI works continuously with our federal, state, local, and tribal partners to share intelligence and protect the public."

For the record, New Mexico is both the home of the White Sands Missile Range, a US military testing site, and of course Roswell, location of the famous Roswell UFO incident. For what it’s worth, White Sands is around 400 miles away from the area the plane was when it encountered this unidentified object.

We’ll be sure to keep you posted on any updates! 



That’s it for this episode of Ain’t It Scary with Sean and Carrie! Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @aintitscary, and check out our website at aintitscary.com. You can support the show by supporting our sponsors, and becoming a patron at www.patreon.com/aintitscary. And please, subscribe to the show and throw us a 5-star review on Apple Podcasts...we’ll be forever grateful.

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See you next Thursday! 

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