WASHINGTON -- Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, whose personal life has been the stuff of both national myth and melodrama for most of his adult years, plans to get married, his office announced yesterday.
Mr. Kennedy, 60, will wed Victoria Reggie, 38, a Washington lawyer whom the senator said he has known for years and has been dating for nine months. It will be a second marriage for both.
"I love Vicki and her children very much," Mr. Kennedy said in a news release. "We began dating last June, and she has brought enormous happiness into my life. I look forward to our marriage and our life together."
Ms. Reggie is a partner in the Washington law firm of Keck, Mahin and Cate. She is a 1976 graduate of Newcomb College in New Orleans. In 1979, she graduated summa cum laude from Tulane Law School.
Ms. Reggie's children -- Curran, 9, and Caroline, 6 -- are from a marriage that ended in 1990, according to the senator's news release.
No date has been set for the wedding, but Mr. Kennedy's office said the couple expected the ceremony to occur later this year.
According to the senator's office, Ms. Reggie and her parents are longtime friends of the Kennedy family.
Mr. Kennedy has three grown children -- Edward Jr. and Patrick, a Rhode Island state legislator; and one daughter, Cara -- from his marriage to Joan Bennett Kennedy, which broke up shortly after his unsuccessful campaign for the presidency in 1980.
Greg Craig, a lawyer, friend and adviser to Mr. Kennedy, said yesterday, "I think he's really happy. When he called to tell me this morning, there was an unbelievable spirit in his voice."
Mr. Craig was Mr. Kennedy's attorney during the controversy surrounding the rape trial of his nephew William Kennedy Smith in Palm Beach, Fla., last year. He said Ms. Reggie played an active role as a lawyer and a confidante in crafting the senator's legal and political strategy.
"He was seeing her regularly. She had insights, ideas and opinions based on her training that had a lot to do with how he came out in the courtroom," Mr. Craig said.