Strid­ing Through His­tory: When two Ty­d­ings cam­paigned in Dun­dalk


Sadly, for­mer Demo­cratic United States Sen­a­tor from Mary­land Joseph Davies Ty­d­ings, 90 (1928-2018) died of can­cer — ac­cord­ing to daugh­ter Mary Ty­d­ings Smith — on Oct, 8, 2018.

Ear­lier this year in this space, I gen­er­ally fa­vor­ably re­viewed the late Sen­a­tor’s au­to­bi­og­ra­phy, en­ti­tled, “My Life in Pro­gres­sive Pol­i­tics: Against the Grain.”

My con­nec­tion to the late JDT be­gan on the night be­fore the Gen­eral Elec­tion of 1964, when — as a bus­boy at the then-renowned Thomp­son’s Sea­girt House seafood restau­rant on York Road in Go­vans, Md. — I cleaned away the din­ner dishes of the then-GOP U.S. Sen­a­tor from Mary­land, James Glenn Beall Sr., who was then 71, the age I am now.

In do­ing so, I no­ticed that one of his hands was crip­pled. The next day, he was de­feated for re-elec­tion by JDT.

In June 1969, Joyce Lynn Gas­ton Tay­lor and I dropped in at Sen. Ty­d­ings’ Wash­ing­ton, D.C., of­fice on Capi­tol Hill, re­quest­ing a per­sonal pho­to­graph with him that he gra­ciously ac­ceded to.

In 1970, we went door-to-door to­gether for him on Mid­wood Av­enue, the street where we then lived, also in Go­vans. One lady on whose door we knocked liked us, but in­sisted at the end of our talk as she had at the be­gin­ning, “He’s too close to those Kennedys!”

She turned out to be right, too, as even he later ad­mit­ted was part of the rea­son he wasn’t re-elected that year. By then, Camelot — as the late Jackie Kennedy so fa­mously termed the JFK Pres­i­den­tial years of 1961-63 to LIFE mag­a­zine in ‘64 — was over.

Both Jack and Bobby Kennedy had been mur­dered by as­sas­sins’ bul­lets, and their younger brother Ted had for­ever com­pro­mised his own pos­si­ble Pres­i­den­tial elec­tion chances with the ac­ci­den­tal death of a young woman not his wife in July 1969.

In ad­di­tion to cam­paign­ing for JDT in 1970, I cov­ered his ap­pear­ance at then Tow­son State Col­lege’s stu­dent cen­ter White Room for the school news­pa­per, Tow­erlight, that still ex­ists to­day.

I did the same, too, of his GOP chal­lenger same year, Con­gress­man John Glenn Beall, Jr., who de­feated Ty­d­ings in the 1970 Gen­eral Elec­tion.

He was the son of the very same man whom JDT had beaten six years ear­lier in an ironic re­ver­sal of fate.

In 1978, I in­ter­viewed the sec­ond JGB for the then Mary­land State Med­i­cal Jour­nal when he was the Repub­li­can nom­i­nee for Gover­nor of Mary­land. He lost the No­vem­ber Gen­eral Elec­tion to Demo­cratic nom­i­nee Harry R. Hughes.

In 1976, then US Sen. Beall Jr. was — like JDT be­fore him — run­ning for re-elec­tion, but lost that year’s Gen­eral to the Demo­cratic nom­i­nee, then-Con­gress­man Paul S. Sar­banes, for whom I’d also cam­paigned door-todoor in ‘70, si­mul­ta­ne­ously as I did for JDT.

The Con­gress­man had cam­paigned for JDT in 1964, and 11 years later — in 1975 — was told by the for­mer Sen. Ty­d­ings that he would not run back again for his for­mer seat. Sar­banes took him at his word and an­nounced his can­di­dacy, but then Ty­d­ings changed his mind and an­nounced any­way, on Jan. 10, 1976.

I was then dread­ing that both of them would ask me si­mul­ta­ne­ously to cam­paign for them again.

What would I do? For­tu­nately, nei­ther one did, so I was spared hav­ing to make that choice.:)

In the event, Rep. Sar­banes de­feated JDT badly — by over 100,000 votes — 61 to 39 per­cent. He also beat Beall Jr. in the Gen­eral, serv­ing in the USS un­til he re­tired un­de­feated in 2007, and is still liv­ing.

So, the ques­tion arises: how and why did Ty­d­ings change his mind about run­ning against his for­mer cam­paigner that year of 1976?

If you think that the above has been twisted and com­pli­cated, we now turn to the an­swer, partly via the sec­ond of the late Sen­a­tor’s four wives.

Ac­cord­ing to JDT’s obit­u­ary of Oct. 9, 2018 by re­porter Bart Barnes in The Wash­ing­ton Post, “His mar­riages to Vir­ginia Reynolds Camp­bell, Terry Lynn Hunt­ing­ton, Rose­mary Kayser, and Kate Clark ended in di­vorce.”

Next, there is this seg­ment from JDT’s au­to­bi­og­ra­phy pre­vi­ously men­tioned, con­cern­ing a then ex­pected, forth­com­ing 1970 ex­pose in LIFE mag­a­zine — topic un­known — that the then in­cum­bent Sen­a­tor was dread­ing:

“By this time, my mar­riage to Ginny was fail­ing, and I had fallen in love with a beau­ti­ful Cal­i­for­nia woman, whom I would later marry...OK, OK, what the pub­lic would’ve seen is that a mar­ried US Sen­a­tor with four young chil­dren was hav­ing an af­fair. Ob­vi­ously, such a story would be po­lit­i­cally dam­ag­ing...”

As it de­vel­oped, how­ever, the LIFE ex­pose was about some­thing both en­tirely dif­fer­ent and un­re­lated; he lost any­way.

Next came prac­tic­ing lawyer JDT’s dis­claimer to Con­gress­man Sar­banes that he wouldn’t run against him,

Back to the au­to­bi­og­ra­phy: “But my new wife” — Terry Lynn Hunt­ing­ton Ty­d­ings — ”re­ally wanted me to run for the Se­nate. Although I was re­luc­tant at first, she fi­nally per­suaded me to join the race .... A part of me wanted an­other crack at it.”

And so it came to pass that they both came to Dun­dalk in that 1976 Pri­mary sea­son to a Del. Pat Welsh fundraiser, where I duly got to meet the sec­ond Mrs. Ty­d­ings. We said hello, shook hands, I thought that she was at­trac­tive, and a nice per­son.

I never gave her an­other thought, though, un­til ear­lier this year, 2018 — 42 years later! — when I no­ticed what I took to be a rather un­even treat­ment of her in the Sen­a­tor’s book. I was in­trigued. Who was she, any­way, or---rather---who had she once been? Who was she now?

I de­cided to find out, first read­ing on the in­ter­net about what had been a nasty di­vorce bat­tle be­tween them — enough said about that as­pect. I was in­ter­ested in the per­son. Here’s what I dis­cov­ered.

Terry Lynn Hunt­ing­ton Ty­d­ings, 72, was born on May 8, 1940 at Mt. Shasta, CA, where she grad­u­ated from high school as a ma­jorette in the band, then ma­jored in dance af­ter that at the Univer­sity of Cal­i­for­nia at Los An­ge­les, aka UCLA.

Dur­ing 1954-55, she’d won her first beauty pageant ti­tles as Miss Mt. Shas­tra. In 1959, then Miss Hunt­ing­ton won the crown of Miss Cal­i­for­nia USA, go­ing on that same year “To be­come Cal­i­for­nia’s first rep­re­sen­ta­tive to achieve the ti­tle of Miss USA...She is also the first Miss USA in her home state,” ac­cord­ing to Wikipedia.

“She was then sec­ond run­ner up in the Miss Uni­verse 1959 pageant.” That same year, Miss Hunt­ing­ton be­gan ap­pear­ing on na­tional tele­vi­sion shows as an ac­tress or guest, among them be­ing Perry Ma­son, The Un­touch­ables, The Ad­ven­tures of Ozzie & Har­riet, and Grou­cho Marx’s game show, You Bet Your Life.

She starred as well in the Hol­ly­wood movie as He­cuba in The Three Stooges Meet Her­cules.

Fol­low­ing her act­ing ca­reer, Miss Hunt­ing­ton was a women’s cloth­ing busi­ness pro­duc­tion man­ager, a model, an of­fice worker for US Sen. Alan Cranston, and — one re­port has it — was in the 1984 aborted Pres­i­den­tial cam­paign of then Colorado Demo­cratic US Sen. Gary Hart.

She mar­ried JDT on Apr. 19, 1975, “with whom she had a daugh­ter, ac­tress Alexan­dra Ty­d­ings,” and in 1980 was named to the Board of Women’s Na­tional Bank.

Since then, the for­mer sec­ond Mrs. Ty­d­ings has pub­lished her own au­to­bi­og­ra­phy, en­ti­tled, Cal­i­for­nia Girl: Miss USA 1959. And there you have it!

I have a say­ing: “If I haven’t done it, I know some­one who has!”


Blaine Tay­lor is the au­thor of the forth­com­ing po­lit­i­cal bi­og­ra­phy, Bobby! From Robert F. Kennedy to RFK/A Life on the Way to Death,

1925-68. In 2013, he pub­lished his first of sev­eral pro­jected Kennedy works, Dal­las Fifty

Years On: The Mur­der of John F. Kennedy.


When all of them were much younger, dur­ing the run-up to the 1976 Mary­land Demo­cratic Pri­mary Elec­tion for the United States Se­nate, as seen here at a lo­cal fundraiser in Dun­dalk that I at­tended. From left to right are seen for­mer MD U.S. Sen. Joseph D. Ty­d­ings (1928-2018), then-MD State Demo­cratic Del. Pa­trick T. Welsh of Dun­dalk (1950-2007) and Mrs. Terry Lynn Hunt­ing­ton Ty­d­ings (born 1940). When JDT lost to Sar­banes, she is seen cry­ing in be­tween the two at rear in the Ty­d­ings au­to­bi­og­ra­phy, her pres­ence un­men­tioned in the cap­tion. I rec­og­nized her there, and now, here.

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