The Kennedys: Wrong Turn at the Bridge

Driving down a deserted beach road at midnight on the island resort of Martha's Vineyard, Mass., Senator Edward Kennedy lost control of his car. The black 1967 Oldsmobile 88 careened off a 10-ft.-wide wooden bridge leading to the dunes, and overturned in a salt pond. Somehow, Ted Kennedy escaped. His passenger, Mary Jo Kopechne, 28, a pretty, witty blonde who had worked as a secretary for Robert Kennedy, was not so fortunate. Trapped in the car, she drowned.

After the accident, Kennedy returned to look for his friends, who were dining nearby. He climbed into the back of a car...

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