Secretary Elaine Chao

 
 
 

With Love to Dear Ol' Dad

The Senate majority leader’s wife, Karyn McLaughlin Frist, was at the White House, at a small dinner for the king of Spain. President Bush’s daughter Jenna walked in late. At first, the president seemed irritated. But one look at Jenna as she hurried into her seat, and Bush “absolutely melted,” Frist recalled. “He broke into a big, proud smile.”

Fathers and daughters captivated Frist, in part because she missed her own father, who had died. Frist invited women—senators, heads of state, Olympic medalists and a soldier—to write about their fathers, in a book to be published next week, “Love You, Daddy Boy: Daughters Honor the Fathers They Love.”

Many of the essays peek into the foyers of political homes. President Lyndon B. Johnson’s daughter Lynda Johnson Robb writes that she sold Girl Scout cookies door to door in the Senate. H. Ross Perot’s daughter Nancy Perot Mulford recounts ski trips “with Dad always in the lead, racing ahead.” And Frist, whose father signed letters to her while she was away at college “Love U, Daddy Boy,” confesses: “On a starry evening I often walk to a dark spot on the lawn and look at the full moon and say, ‘I love YOU, Daddy Boy.’ “

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