President John F. Kennedy’s grand-niece, granddaughter of Robert F. Kennedy, and her 8-year-old son drowned after rowing into the rough waters of the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.
Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean’s son, Gideon Joseph Kennedy McKean, was outside kicking a ball with other kids when the ball went into the water.
Maeve and her son got into a canoe on Thursday around 4 p.m. to retrieve the ball outside her mother’s home, according to the Washington Post.
Maeve’s husband told the publication that the pair went to retrieve the ball amid high winds. “They popped into a canoe to chase it down. They just got farther out than they could handle and couldn’t get back in,” David McKean said.
Rescuers searched for the mother and son Thursday night and continued their search early Friday morning.
A spokesman for the U.S. Coast Guard told the Washington Post, the wind reached about 30 mph Thursday afternoon, with waves 2 to 3 feet high.
Kathleen Kennedy Townsend said in a statement Friday night that the search for her daughter had turned “from rescue to recovery.”