Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean, 40, and her 8-year-old son, Gideon, were in a canoe near Annapolis when they disappeared on April 2, according to state officials and husband David McKean.
“It is clear that Maeve and Gideon have passed away,” McKean’s husband wrote on Facebook. “We were self-quarantining in an empty house owned by Maeve’s mother Kathleen on the Chesapeake Bay, hoping to give our kids more space than we have at home in DC to run around,” he added.
He said that Gideon and Maeve jumped in a canoe to retrieve a ball that went out into Chesapeake Bay.
“They got into a canoe, intending simply to retrieve the ball, and somehow got pushed by wind or tide into the open bay,” her husband wrote. “About 30 minutes later they were spotted by an onlooker from land, who saw them far out from shore, and called the police. After that last sighting, they were not seen again. The Coast Guard recovered their canoe, which was capsized and miles away, at approximately 6:30 [Thursday] evening.”
McKean was the daughter of former Maryland Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, who is the daughter of Robert F. Kennedy. She leaves behind her husband and two other children.
“At this time our family asks for privacy and that everyone keep Maeve and Gideon in their prayers,” the family said in a statement to news outlets on April 3.
The Kennedy family has a long history of tragic incidents, including the deaths of Robert F. Kennedy and former President John F. Kennedy. The president’s son, John F. Kennedy Jr., and his wife died in a plane crash in July 1999. Several of Robert Kennedy’s children and grandchildren have also died over the years.