Rarely has a public figure addressed such difficult, intimate issues with such courage and bravery. In a moving, passionate memoir, former Senator George McGovern recalls the events leading up to his daughter Terry's death as a result of alcoholism. What McGovern learned from Terry is an unforgettable, poignant tale certain to engender controversy ...
Rarely has a public figure addressed such difficult, intimate issues with such courage and bravery. In a moving, passionate memoir, former Senator George McGovern recalls the events leading up to his daughter Terry's death as a result of alcoholism. What McGovern learned from Terry is an unforgettable, poignant tale certain to engender controversy and compassion. of photos.
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Publishers Weekly, 1996-03-25 The former Democratic senator from South Dakota here presents a memorial service for his alcoholic daughter, Terry, who froze to death on the streets of Madison, Wisc., one pre-Christmas night in 1994. Other such books have been more felicitously written but few as heart-wrenchingly, as we hear about Terry's troubled life from her family (three sisters and a brother who is a recovering alcoholic), friends, doctors and police. The onetime presidential candidate's daughter began drinking at 13; at 15 she had an abortion, arranged by her father although the procedure was then illegal. Terry, who continued drinking, was arrested for possessing pot in 1968, a charge carrying a mandatory five-year sentence she beat (thanks to her father's lawyers) on a technicality involving the search warrant. She left college to spend more than four years in daily psychoanalysis following six months in a locked psychiatric ward. Although as one doctor noted, Terry was "an awfully tough case,'' in 1980, when she was 31, her life seemed salvageable; at that time she embarked on what proved to be eight years of sobriety, during which she and her lover had two daughters. But her drinking, despite countless treatment programs, at private facilities and AA, would ultimately kill her. Her father, who discusses the high incidence of alcoholism among his forbears and has now dedicated himself to the cause, considers Terry's a possible genetic condition. His anguish is potent. Author tour. (June)
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