Ted Sorensen Hit by Stroke


sorensen kennedy.jpg
Just a week away from the 50th anniversary of the election of John F. Kennedy, Kennedy adviser, speechwriter, and close confidante Ted Sorensen has been struck by another stroke.
I don’t know the prognosis as of yet — but close associates of Ted’s are keeping TWN informed.
Sorensen has been a guest blogger at The Washington Note and has become a personal friend over the years. Despite impairments after a massive stroke some years ago, Sorensen continued to think, write, spoke at and attended conferences. One of his impressive proteges, among many, is White House speechwriter Adam Frankel.
Our sincerest wishes for recovery go to Ted who has done so much to constantly remind Americans of what leadership should look like and what the responsibilities of our elected leaders to the nation are.
— Steve Clemons


6 comments on “Ted Sorensen Hit by Stroke

  1. nadine says:

    The NYT News Alert is reporting that Ted Sorensen has passed away at 82. My condolences, Steve.


  2. Elvis Dingeldein says:

    I was devastated to learn of Ted’s recent stroke, as he and I have been working closely together on a project and I had just heard from him, via email, mere hours before this second stroke.I’m praying for his full and speedy recovery.
    I’ve known Ted since I had the honor of being his personal assistant and body-man at the 2008 Nebraska State Democratic Convention, where he was the keynote speaker and I a simple delegate from my small Nebraska town. He was doing a book-signing for COUNSELOR: A LIFE AT THE EDGE OF HISTORY, which had just come out, and because I had 10 years in retail book sales in my past, I volunteered to assist. What I got was 8 full hours of tending to Ted’s every need, walking him around the convention, listening to him talk to friends and admirers, and spending quiet moments, just the two of us, talking about John F. Kennedy and Ted’s days in the White House. He signed my book, and a photograph of the EXCOMM meeting during the Cuban Missile Crisis that I had brought along. It was one of the most memorable days of my life, and the most honored I’ve ever felt.
    I’ve since kept in touch with Ted by phone and email, and last saw him at his apartment in Central Park this past February, where we met to discuss this project I’ve been working on. I sat in his office as he waited to have dinner with the ex-Prime Minister of Italy (!!), beneath a large painting of he and JFK in the Roosevelt Room, discussing the letter Ted helped draft to Nikita Khrushchev during the Cuban Missile Crisis. It isn’t hyperbole to say that Ted Sorensen helped save the world that week in October, 1962; his genius with words, his cool head, his fear of global nuclear war and his dedication to peace helped him steer Jack Kennedy, and the nation, towards diplomacy that night, and seeing this painting above his couch, depicting that terrible time so poignantly, nearly moved me to tears.
    Ted has always been extremely kind to me, and generous with his time. He’s a dear, kind and gentle man and truly one of my political heroes. I can’t tell you how much I’m praying he pulls out of this. I’d like to tell him, one last time, how much he has meant to me.


  3. John says:

    Thank you very much for valuable information


  4. DakotabornKansan says:

    President John F. Kennedy called Ted Sorensen his


  5. natthedem says:

    Thanks for the information, Steve. Sorensen is one of my heroes
    and I’ll be praying for his recovery.


  6. Don Bacon says:

    It’s fascinating that a man from Nebraska, the son of a Unitarian father and a Jewish Russian mother, could become an effective influential inside contributor to the Kennedy Irish mafia.
    Steve selects his friends well, and perhaps he’ll tell us more about Sorenson.
    Meanwhile we have this from an Amazon book reviewer, Pranay Gupte: “As a friend [of Ted Sorenson], I can say that Ted speaks truth to power; as an admirer, I can say that he speaks truth forcefully and candidly. He was arguably John Kennedy’s alter ego. At the very least, Ted was the man who shaped JFK’s lyrical, intellectually vigorous speeches. But Ted was also a canny adviser, the lawyer who marshaled his facts well, made the connections between random thoughts and workable ideas, and produced a consistent body of work for the president he loved and trusted.”


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