NEWBURYPORT — In the scope of a few short weeks, C. Bruce Brown of Newburyport has seen his son Scott Brown's political ambitions grow from a long-shot campaign to the most-watched political event in the nation.
As a youth, Scott Brown spent summers at his father's home on Plum Island, worked on his steamship, Sabino, and played basketball at the Elks Club on Low Street.
Now he's in the political fight of his life — battling with Democrat Martha Coakley for the U.S. Senate seat once held by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy.
C. Bruce Brown, who served as a Newburyport city councilor for 18 years, has fond memories of his son's days in Newburyport. Brown and his first wife were divorced when Scott Brown was very young, and his son split his time between Newburyport and Wakefield. C. Bruce Brown later married Peggy Kennedy Brown.
"He used to come down with Gail (Scott Brown's wife, Gail Huff, of Channel 5 News) and his then-only daughter, Ayla, when I had the Shingle House Company on Plum Island," C. Bruce Brown said. "He has a beautiful family, and he will bring political prestige to this area."
Scott Brown currently has a summer home on Rye Beach in Rye, N.H.
His father said his son's political dreams started early. Taking after his father and grandfather, Scott Brown quickly took to Republican politics. After graduating from Tufts University on a scholarship and winning a national public speaking award, Brown moved into local government, serving as a town selectman in Wrentham, located in the southeastern part of Massachusetts.
"I served on Newburyport City Council, then my job transferred me to the Berkshires in the mid-'60s," C. Bruce Brown said. "I was running for state office, and Scott came with me. That's when he really got a taste of it."