Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean and her son went missing after entering the water in a canoe.

A search is underway for two members of the prominent Kennedy family in an area of the Chesapeake Bay called Herring Bay. According to family members, Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean, 40, and her son Gideon, 8, entered the water in a canoe around 5 p.m. on Thursday, April 3, 2020. A bystander that saw the pair struggling called 9-1-1. Around 7 p.m. representatives from Anne Arundel Fire and Rescue were said to have found an empty canoe and paddle. Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean is the daughter of Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland and the granddaughter of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy. 

With darkness setting in, the search was called off at 7:30 p.m. and resumed the next morning. Air and boat crews from the U.S. Coast Guard, Air Station Atlantic City are searching the waters with help from Maryland State Police, Maryland Natural Resource Police, Queen Anne Police Department, and Anne Arundel Police and Fire Departments.

Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean, her husband David McKean, and three children were at her mother’s home in Shade Side, Maryland, on Thursday afternoon. In an interview with the Washington Post on Friday, David McKean said his wife and 8-year-old son ventured into the water in a canoe to chase after a ball. He said the canoe took them out too far and they struggled to come back in. The National Weather Service recorded wind speeds of 26 mph and gusts at 39 mph.

The couple lives in Washington, D.C., where Kennedy Townsend McKean is the Executive Director of the Georgetown University Global Health Initiative. The disappearance follows a string of deaths and accidents in the Kennedy family that many call the “Kennedy Family Curse.”

If anyone has any information in the disappearances, they are asked to call the Coast Guard or the Maryland State Police.