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Mary Kennedy's Home, an Eco-Friendly Inspiration

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Mary Richardson Kennedy, a passionate and committed environmentalist, passed away on Wednesday. Known for her philanthropic and environmental work, Kennedy was active with the Boys & Girls Club in Mount Kisco and was also an inspiration and role model for living a green lifestyle.

Kennedy’s Bedford, NY, home was a leading example of eco-friendly architecture. The home was made from reclaimed building materials and had solar roof shingles as well as a geothermal heating and cooling system. A mix of LED and fiber-optic lights were used throughout the house. Some of the interior hardware as well as several doors were upcycled from the former Wassaic Mental Institution. According to a feature written on the ecofabulous blog, the home recycled pieces of wood from trees that had fallen on the property as floor tiles.

The Kennedy home was such an inspiration that there is also an entire website dedicated to it. The “Green Resources Guide” is there to help others live a greener life. The Kennedy’s commitment to the environment goes beyond the home as Robert F. Kennedy Jr. served as the vice chair and chief prosecuting attorney for the environmental organization Riverkeeper and is the chair of the Waterkeeper Alliance.

The newly remodeled, eco-friendly home was filled with Kennedy and other presidential memorabilia and was set up to maximize energy and water efficiency. The home was a place where Mary and Robert F. Kennedy Jr. set a premier example of green living.

Mary Kennedy suffered from depression throughout her life, and is said to have died from asphyxiation, a result of hanging.

Sister-in-law Kerry Kennedy remembers her by saying, “She was brilliant and she was beautiful and she cared so very very deeply about everybody around her. She loved her children more than anything else.”

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  • mextexican

    Um, am I alone in thinking it’s a little UN eco friendly to have a house as big as a medium sized hotel? That’s what came thru loud and clear when I saw the first images of Kennedy’s house. How wonderful that she recycled a lot of what she used in building her rather unimaginative, prosaic house. But did it ever occur to either one of the Kennedys that less is more, especially when you are talking about saving resources??

    • Guesty72648464342

      Sure. Maybe. But not necessarily. We build green skyscrapers. Like the new WTC.

  • wndrdog

    100% agree w/ mextexican: A personal hotel is an egregious environmental offense, no matter how their obvious wealth allowed them to adorn it with ‘green’ features. I LOVE what Mary Kennedy was trying to do, and I am a HUGE FAN of what RFK Jr has done for the environment. But for me, the worst part is that every time someone prominently “green” is unwittingly hypocritical in their own lifestyle (ahem … Al Gore’s huge home(s) & frequent flyer miles … ) they COMPLETELY UNDERMINE the validity of their eco-message. Worse than that, they feed ridicule-ready talking points directly to Fox News, the Fossil Fuel Industry, and climate deniers of all walks.

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