Goldwater Blues: Barry Jr. Gets Divorced as Brother, Michael, Struggles After Bankruptcy
Life is off to a fresh start for the 70-something sons of Arizona legend Barry Goldwater, with Barry Jr.'s divorce and Michael's bankruptcy wrapping up last month.
Image: Gage Skidmore, via Flickr Barry Goldwater Jr. (above) ended his second marriage as of July -- the same month his brother, Michael, finalized a bankruptcy.
The Chapter 7 bankruptcy of Michael Prescott Goldwater and wife, Constance, was discharged on July 1, leaving credit-card companies, department stores, and other creditors -- including Michael's sister Joanne -- hanging for tens of thousands of dollars.
Meanwhile, a consent decree was filed on July 30 in the divorce proceeding of Barry Goldwater Jr. and his second wife, Sylvia DeLucia, ending a seven-year marriage that had seen its first divorce filing six years ago.
- Goldwater Uncut
Goldwater Jr., a former Republican Congressman from California who lives in Scottsdale, has lived in the public eye in recent months due to his support of solar firms in their high-profile battle with Arizona Public Service. (Click here to read "Flare-up," our comprehensive July 11 article on the fight over "net metering.") But his personal life hasn't always been full of sunshine.
The 75-year-old once had been pretty cool for a congressman, tooling around on a skateboard in congressional buildings and smoking pot inside his office. A right-winger who was soft on social-conservative issues, it appeared Goldwater Jr. was on track to rival the political achievements of his iconic father.
Then came the devastating loss of a primary election in 1982 for a seat in the U.S. Senate, followed by an investigation into allegations that several members of Congress had been using drugs.
Goldwater Jr. escaped criminal charges and denied publicly that he'd used cocaine or pot. But was encouraged by his family a few years later to enter a drug-rehab clinic, reportedly due to his affection for coke.
Goldwater Jr.'s political career was over, but he'd made a fortune early on as a stockbroker and, like his siblings, apparently had access to the family's once-sizable trust fund. Though financially secure, Goldwater Jr. fretted about his decaying reputation in a lengthy 1983 People article, lamenting the pressures of having been born into a family in which extreme success was expected.
Finding the right woman also has been a challenge for him.
Goldwater Jr.'s first marriage broke up in the mid-'70s. One of his girlfriends met with misfortune: Loretta Clarke Guinan, a young married woman he'd taken as a lover in the summer of 1984, disappeared a few months later after agreeing to testify against her husband, a lawyer and accused thief. The woman's husband, Michael Guinan, was suspected in the disappearance; Goldwater Jr. was the last person to speak with her.