President John F. Kennedy was beloved by many, but his numerous affairs stand as proof that he was no saint. But even his critics likely didn't expect the name of the former President and disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein would be uttered in the same sentence.
An alleged 83-year-old mistress of JFK named Diana de Vegh has finally decided to tell her story after nearly 60 years of keeping the sordid details of the relationship in the closet.
According to de Vegh, the affair with the President began in 1958 when he was a charismatic up and coming Mass. Senator and she was just 21 years old. Vegh claims the affair lingered on and off for four years, even as Kennedy moved into the White House, until a year before he was assassinated.
It's been 6 decades since the alleged affair. However, de Vegh had no trouble recalling in her own words the details to the online weekly digital outlet Air Mail News, claiming the former President approached her at a political event in Boston while she was a student at Radcliffe College.
The former mistress, who now lives in New York City, claims that JFK spotted her in the crowd and asked if he could sit down at her table. “Give me your seat, so a tired old man can sit next to a pretty girl,” she alleges Kennedy said.
The grandmother also compared him to Harvey Weinstein and Roger Ailes. She spoke to the New York Post saying, “The whole idea of conferred specialness – 'You go to bed with me, I'll make you special' – we've seen a lot of that with Harvey Weinstein, Roger Ailes, show business.”
While this is the first time de Vegh has spoken on the record about the alleged affair, in 2004 she offered her account of the relationship in Sally Bedell Smith's 2004 book, Grace and Power: The Private World of the Kennedy White House. She told the Post that she did indeed speak to Smith, but it was under the promise of anonymity which she claims Smith broke.
“Young woman, great man,” She recounted for Air Mail News. “Predictable outcome: heartbreak for her, no consequences for him.”
She goes on to write, “But here, now, in this ballroom, adrenaline poured through me. A star galvanizing a crowd... here he was. Center dais. Easy in the spotlight.”
“Finally, a place to land. A place to belong. I just had to become part of this: glamour, drama, suspense. How would it turn out? Then, suddenly, the senator was at our table.”
de Vegh remembers wanting Kennedy to take notice of her: “I wanted to be one of the favorites. Actually, I wanted to be the favorite.”
For the weeks and years that followed, Kennedy never worried about the affair going public as the media would never out him. Thus, he would personally invite de Vegh to other events without a fear in the world.
Kennedy would even have his driver pick her up from her dorm room while his staff would offer her coffee. She says to Smith of the casualness of it all, “What could I have been thinking? Obviously, I wasn't thinking. I was feeling, in full movie-star-infatuation-mode.”
“Only this movie star was a worldly actor who was going to make everything different. And I would be part of it, carried along in the wake of his power. I didn't realize then that I'd simply been netted.”
The affair almost ended when the then Harvard dean Mac Bundy heard about de Vegh. Apparently, Kennedy served on Harvard's Board of Overseers and de Vegh's father Imrie de Vegh sat on visiting committees at the university according to Smith's book.
Bundy insisted Kennedy stop the affair and all contact with de Vegh including dorm room pickups. But the President continued. “This was love for sure. And...now, it was sex for sure,” de Vegh writes in Air Mail News.
When de Vegh graduated, Kennedy got her a gig on Bundy's staff as a dig for trying to end the affair. When he moved into the White House, de Vegh was hired on Capitol Hill in a job the President had allegedly set up for her. She would eventually end up working in the Executive Office Building of the White House.
Once President, Kennedy slowly began to lose interest in de Vegh, possibly because of his obsessive interest in Marilyn Monroe. She would eventually move to Paris.
Once asked what was the attraction to the former President. She replied, “Power.”