American Tragedies: Why the Kennedys Still Fascinate

"The humanity of their story is what keeps us engaged," one Kennedy expert said

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The death of Saoirse Kennedy Hill this week was a reminder that America's preeminent dynasty, for all of its glamour and political might, has faced heartbreaks and struggles familiar to families across the country, NBC News reports.

"The humanity of their story is what keeps us engaged," said J. Randy Taraborrelli, the author of four books about the Kennedy family. "They have the mystique of the British royal family, but they're at one with the public and, in some ways, quite relatable."

Hill, one of Robert and Ethel Kennedy's 35 grandchildren, wrote of her depression and mental illness, describing "deep bouts of sadness that felt like a heavy boulder on my chest." The New York Times reported that she died of an apparent overdose, which NBC News has not confirmed.

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