The autopsy report on Mary Richardson Kennedy revealed the estranged wife of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. had traces of three antidepressant medications in her system when she died. Kennedy, whose body was found after she hanged herself in May, struggled with alcohol addiction in the years before her suicide, according to the New York Times.
The news she had trazodone, venlafaxine, and desmthylvenafaxine in her system was not a revelation to anyone familiar with Mary Kennedy's story, as noted by ABC News. Born Mary Richardson, she not only had an alcohol problem but was arrested in August 2010 for driving under the influence of prescription drugs, charges her lawyer said were later dismissed.
She struggled so hard, for so long, with mental illness, which so many Americans suffer with, Kerry Kennedy, her sister-in-law and friend, told ABC. She fought with dignity, and, in the end, the demons won.
It was widely reported at the time of the 52-year-old's death that she had been drinking before committing suicide, a rumor the New York Times dispelled Friday, when it reported: While Ms. Kennedy struggled in the past with alchol addiction, there were no signs that she had been drinking before she hanged herself with a rope in a barn behind her home in Bedford, N.Y., according to a report by the Westchester County medical examiner.
Mary Kennedy's troubles began entering the news media in 2010, the same year she and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. wound up filing for divorce. Along with the prescription drug arrest, she also found herself in trouble for driving over a curb near a school, after which she was charged with driving while intoxicated.
RFK Jr. filed for divorce from his wife the day after police came to the couple's home to investigate a domestic dispute, when Mary Kennedy was reportedly intoxicated. At the time of her suicide two years later, the divorce was still pending and Mary was asked to not be around the couple's children while under the influence and to avoid threatening suicide in their presence.
In May, the International Business Times ran an article that shed a bit more light on who Mary Kennedy was and why her suicide went deeper than the infamous Kennedy Curse.
Mary Kennedy was a skilled architect and designer, the IBTimes reported. [S]he oversaw the renovation of the family's sprawling, environmentally friendly mansion. Kennedy Jr. is an avid environmentalist who has been fighting to save and maintain rivers around the country. ... Despite this seemingly perfect life, Mary Kennedy had a bad marriage, problems with drugs and alcohol, and suffered deep inner turmoil. Her death has raised questions about her children, her divorce from Robert F. Kennedy, and his relationship with new girlfriend, Cheryl Hines.
The last bit of that sentence is particularly salacious for gossipers. Hines, the actress probably best known for her work on HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm, was rumored to have been taking over the life that Mary Kennedy once had. Hines was often photographed with Kennedy Jr. and tweeted her joy in becoming closer to Mary and Robert's children.
This latest news is another sad reminder that life in Camelot has its dark side.