The motorcade carrying the body of Sen. Ted Kennedy from Hyannis Port to the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston was struck by tragedy today, as it was forced to take a slight detour from its planned route due to unforeseen road construction. As the hearse bearing Sen. Kennedy crossed the old Chappaquiddick Bridge, the driver inexplicably lost control of the vehicle and it plunged into the water below.
The son of the late senator, Patrick Kennedy, who is now a congressman from Rhode Island, was sitting in the passenger seat of the hearse and was able to escape. He was last seen making his way through the marshy area beside the bridge. Officers of the Massachusetts State Highway Patrol shouted for him to stop, but he disappeared into a wooded area.
When asked why no search had been mounted for the younger Kennedy, a Massachusetts state trooper on the scene said, "Oh, he'll show up back home in a couple hours. He's Teddy's kid; like father, like son. We've been down this road before."
The driver of the hearse, unfortunately, could not be rescued in time and drowned, being pronounced dead at the scene. He was identified as one Martin Joseph Kopechne who had just starting driving for O Danny Boy's Limousine Service, the owner of the hearse.
In an incredibly ironic twist of fate, driver Martin Joseph Kopechne and Mary Jo Kopechne, who drowned while a passenger in a car driven by the late Sen. Kennedy that plunged off the exact same bridge nearly forty years earlier to the day, are not related.
While the hearse was being winched out of the water, the rear door popped open and, to the horror of everyone present, Sen. Kennedy's casket floated out and bobbed to the surface. Before anyone could retrieve it, the coffin began its inexorable journey to the sea.
"Just like I said, " intoned the state trooper, "old Teddy's done this before."
Funeral arrangements have been put on hold while the US Coast Guard continues its search for the wayward remains of the late senator.
Locals point to where they last saw the casket of Sen. Kennedy floating toward open water.