Fallen Hero JFK: “Once Upon a Secret” by Mimi Alford: Review


John F. Kennedy thanking Marilyn Monroe

John F. Kennedy thanking Marilyn Monroe (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I just completed a book written by yet another one of the late John F. Kennedy’s  alleged mistresses, Once Upon A Secret by Mimi Alford.

Her involvement with Kennedy became public knowledge in 2003 with an article by a Kennedy biographer.  He mentioned Alford by name, and pretty soon the reporters were on her trail. She decided to come out with the information on her own.

Alford had been living with the “secret” for 41 years and wanted to give her side of the story. She was especially interested in letting her two daughters know what happened and why.

Alford’s White House Internship
Ironically, Alford won an internship to the White House by writing an article about Jackie Kennedy for her school newspaper, “ Salmugundy”. Since Jackie  was an alumnus of the school, Miss Porter’s a boarding school in Farmington, Connecticut, Jackie’s private secretary, Miss Baldridge, granted her an interview at the White House. Baldridge told her all about Jackie for the article.

Alford assumes the article won her an unsolicited offer to work in The White House.  (She didn’t apply for it.) She took it although her father wasn’t happy about it. He’d already gotten her a job with a fancy law firm. Her family was well-connected and wealthy.

Kennedy was a Womanizer
There are too many women who profess to being his mistresses:Jackie’s press secretary, two white house secretaries nicknamed Fiddle and Faddle, Judith Exner, and Marilyn Monroe.

Alford Was Part of a Team
After you get into this book, you learn there were several graduates of Jackie’s previous alma mater, entertaining JFK throughout the day.  According to Alford, these young women were a tension relievers for the embattled president. On one occasion, JFK suggested she help out his closest aide, Dave Powers relieve his tension too. She complied. But she drew the line at helping out Teddy.

Aftermath of Alford’s affair with Kennedy
After the day of his assassination she confessed the sin to her fiance whom she was later married to for 26 years.  He made her promise to never speak of it again, and she didn’t. She even got rid of the few mementoes JFK  bought her. One was a signed picture, he’d autographed in front of her.
Alford doesn’t regret her affair with Kennedy. Maybe she loved him in her own way.  I think she regretted the fact that she had to hide it, and that it affected her life.

After 26 years, she and her husband got divorced. She does contend that for 13 years they could put the past aside, and were happy. But the last years of their marriage were extremely unhappy. She blames part of it on ” the secret.”

A Happy Ending
One of the reasons Alford doesn’t regret being exposed is because she met her present husband after she became a little famous. She figures if it hadn’t happened, they wouldn’t have ever gotten involved.

Who is Really at Fault?

It seems like the power brokers like Kennedy and more recently Clinton, are too selfish to think about lives they may be corrupting. especially young women.

The book is more well-written that you would expect. It’s an easy read, but it is disturbing. It is a look into the life of President Kennedy from his young mistress’s point of view.

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4 thoughts on “Fallen Hero JFK: “Once Upon a Secret” by Mimi Alford: Review

    • I can’t find a man a hero who seduces young girls. This is what JFK did. She didn’t stop him, but I think it’s pretty bad. He also shared her with one of the people he worked with. She also tried to tell herself she was in love with him. It pretty much ruined her life. The Kennedy’s obviously learned their morals from their father, Joe, who was married and carried on affairs right under his wife’s nose. Specifically, Gloria Swanson.

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