But the veteran broadcaster didn’t bother to warn Edward W. Brooke that the details of their clandestine relationship are about to be very public.
“Isn’t that interesting. I don’t know a thing about it, to tell you the truth,” Brooke told popgoesthenews.com when contacted at his Miami home and told of the revelations in Audition. “I have not read the book.”
Walters, now 78, wrote that she fell hard for Brooke – the first black person elected by popular vote to the U.S. Senate – when she met him three decades ago.
“Ed Brooke was simply the most attractive, funniest, charming and impossible man,” Walters wrote. “I was excited, fascinated, intrigued, and infatuated.”
Brooke, now 88, said he does not want to comment on Walters’ decision to go public. He made no mention of their two-year affair in his 2004 memoir, Bridging the Divide: My Life. “I have a policy of never discussing my personal life nor the personal lives of others,” he said.
The former senator from Massachusetts – he served from 1966 to 1978 – was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 by George W. Bush. When he left political life he went to his home in St. Martin and within six months married Anne Fleming, the daughter of one of the island’s former mayors and most prosperous developers – and 29 years Brooke’s junior. Together, they have one son.
Brooke was married to Remigia Ferrari-Scacco – his Italian war bride – when he met Walters at a New York City restaurant in 1973. Walters recalled how they reconnected several months later in Washington and Brooke invited her for lunch at the Senate Dining Room.
“He told me that he had never stopped thinking of me since the night we met,” she wrote.
Soon they were having a physical relationship, staying at his friends’ Virginia home and at his Watergate apartment. There were summer getaways to Martha’s Vineyard. “We never ran out of things to talk about, and of course there was the fascination of our having to be so secretive,” Walters recalled. “But I was beginning to resent the sneaking around, and I slowly began asking myself if we could ever be married.”
In her memoir, she wrote: “Things had to change. I told Brooke that I could no longer live like this. He was married. It had to end.” Brooke sought a divorce from his wife but Walters was told by close friends that she was risking her career. “We decided wisely but very sadly that we had to stop seeing each other. That was that. We stopped.
“I missed him terribly at first. He had been so much a part of my life and my fantasies. However, the truth is that after the years of hiding, it was also a relief.”
Walters wrote that she has not had contact with Brooke since their relationship ended. She admitted that she thought about contacting him in 2003 when she learned that he was diagnosed with cancer. “I thought of writing to him to say how courageous he was, but I decided not to. Our relationship seemed so long ago,” she admitted in Audition. “For a time, however, it was a very important one in my life.”
More book news - EXCLUSIVE: It's money in the bank for Canadian authors