Welcome To My Book Blog

A place to update and discuss facts surrounding the controversial, tragic death of legendary Hollywood film actress, wife and mother, Natalie Wood who drowned mysteriously Nov. 29, 1981 off Catalina Island. Thank you for visiting.

Monday, October 17, 2011

A vent

Horace and Concetta Carter, parents of Marti Carter (Rulli)

This is a photo of my parents. My mother passed away (ruptured ulcer) on Oct. 17 when I was just a few days away from turning 12 years old. She was only 52. In this photo is also my father who passed away (Cancer) when I was four. For the eight years my mother was a widow, she worked like crazy but also really enjoyed her life. She was adventurous, liked to travel with her sisters, and she threw the best parties ever, especially in the summer when the entire field on our small farm would be covered with friends and family and every type of food "station" you can imagine. 

On my 12th birthday I attended my mother's funeral. I've been able to enjoy birthdays since, as I know it would only anger my mom if I didn't celebrate her life instead of mourning her death. I remember little about my father, but clearly recall the day he taught me how to properly put on socks. I was not exactly "fatherless" because my Uncle Jim lived with us and he was an awesome father figure. He graduated Girard College and instilled in me the will to learn and to be a decent person. He taught me the importance of morals. He also taught me to never back down from what I believe is meaningful. My mom taught me how to enjoy the simple things in life, and to never forget that the simple things are usually the most gratifying in the entire scheme of things.   

Anniversaries of losing loved ones are sometimes difficult. I rarely talk about those anniversaries, but today was different. It was the exact weather today of the morning I awakened and went to school to my 6th grade classroom and told a fellow student that my mom was home and in pain. I worried about her all day. After school, walking down the street from the bus stop with my twin brother, I was hoping my mom would be feeling better by the time I'd walk in the door. Then I saw the ambulance in the driveway. My mom was already inside of it so I didn't get to see her or to say anything to her. My last recall was of her lying on the sofa in the living room in the morning, and she was moaning. She died that night at 11:10 pm. After her funeral, I hoped to be able to live in the home I'd grown up in, and that we'd go on as best we could without her, but just two weeks later, my Uncle Jim also passed away. My twin, Jimmy, and I were truly orphaned. My oldest half brother took us in.

Life did go on, but I've always been aware of Oct. 17 being a day that was so damn hard. Losing a mother is the hardest thing at ANY age, and sometimes even harder on adults who lose parents because there is so much more to remember, so much more time to miss. But losing a mother at a tender age makes you cling to the short time you did have, and you try harder to remember every morsel you can.

My father was a carpenter, and my mother was a waitress who bought into owning a restaurant shortly before she died. They were not stars or celebrities. They were Mom and Dad.

We, as fans of Natalie Wood, miss her celebrity and talent. She was so much fun to watch -- she was an interesting, shining star. And most of us who "talk" here also have the capability to transcend fanhood. We see Natalie as a woman, a person, a mother of two birth daughters she never got to see grow up and become women. They missed having their mother for all those special and important events and pinnacles in life.

This is a public blog all of my personal friends and family as well as strangers can see (hard to not be truthful when you face people daily), but for people who do not know me, there may exist doubt of how I feel about Natalie's daughters. I was in their position. I know how they felt losing their mother at such young ages. I know how painful moments in life must have been for them. I also strongly feel that had a proper investigation been conducted into Natalie's death, they possibly would feel more free to celebrate their mother's life. I know they miss her. I know it must be hell to have their mother's final hours talked about to this day, but I'm not the only one who has talked about it. Sam Kashner, who broke the stateroom argument in the news was not condemned. Suzanne Finstad, who established a valid timeline and brought so many questions to light was not condemned, but I take more heat. It's okay. I realize it's probably that way because the truth is sometimes unbearable, but the truth is also the only thing that will ease pain in the long run. I've embarrassed the authorities. They deserve it. They could admit they made mistakes: who doesn't make mistakes in a job?

I have not hurt Natalie's family. The tragic happenings on Thanksgiving weekend of 1981 is what hurt them, and I feel complete sympathy for them. The controversy, the lies, and the "mystery" are what cause added turmoil. After the way I was brought up, those lies are something I could never ignore. I posted this at 11:10 exactly because, well, I really felt my mother's presence all day today. RIP, Mom.


  1. Hi Marti, thank you for sharing this story, it brought tears to my eye's, I lost my father at 6mos old 52yrs ago and my Mom who is 88yrs old today kept all 9 of her kids together worked 2 to 3 jobs a day until I was 19yrs old and out on my own, I love my Mom with all my heart and I'm so grateful to her and God for letting me have her. She had a hard life having to work all the time and take care of all those kids, she had 3 heart attacks the first at the age 44. To this day it is Gods wish she is here because they gave her 5 yrs to live after taking 50% of her heart out in 1978. Thank you again. Pam

  2. Marti, you are being attacked by people who don't want to see the truth. Many of your readers have never read the VF article by Kashner nor have they read Finstad's book nor have they read Lambert's book. I recall back in the day when Finstad's book came out Wagner's fans went wild. They hated her, they made childish jokes about her hair. This is par for the course for the Wagner supporters.
    I recall when Dennis first revealed the bottle incident. Wagner's fans called Dennis a liar, they said that RJ would never do such a thing, that RJ is not a violent man. Many years later their boy admitted that he broke the bottle in anger. Dennis was telling the truth. With Wagner's supporters everything is a lie unless it comes from Wagner's mouth and then they make excuses for him. You are a liar, Dennis is a liar, Marilyn Wayne is a liar, Bill Coleman is a liar, Curt Craig is a liar and the list goes on and on. Wagner has lied through the media, in his book and to the police and his lies are PROVEN LIES but that's OK.
    Marti, don't let the put downs get to you, just consider the source, a group of deluded fanbots who won't see the truth because they don't want to see it.

  3. Pam,
    I'm glad you still have your mom. She sounds like a woman who lived up to her responsibilities with little complaint, and a drive to survive for all of you. No matter how hard my mom worked, she always had a smile for us, and I grew up with such laughter in our home. That's something, if you have by the time you can walk, that stays with you for a lifetime!

  4. Roz,

    I thought a lot about Natalie yesterday, maybe because of the poignant anniversary approaching and because it was the anniversary of my own mother's death, someone I rarely talk about. I called my brother yesterday and mentioned I was feeling nostalgic, and he had forgotten it was the anniversary. He said, "Well I was feeling really up today, until you called." We laughed so hard. Some things can remain unspoken... and basically, in our family, we aren't all sentimental and talk about sensitive things much, but let one thing go wrong and the family is right there together, solid as a rock. And we all laugh a lot together. I love my family.

    In the Wagner home, it was much different after Natalie died. The family separated. Natalie's daughters were taken to Europe for holidays, to hide from media. Dennis was brought into the home to be kept close to Wagner. Natalie's mother fell apart and eventually went to live with Lana, but Olga resented Lana and Mud for wanting to know more. Wagner blasted Lana constantly. I know these things. Dennis was RIGHT THERE. It's not like Dennis identified Natalie and then went his separate way. He LIVED in the Wagner home for a year and then aboard Splendour for another.

    I stand behind my every word in GNGS and at this blog, and I stand by it PROUDLY. No naysayer will get to me emotionally, ever. I DO feel sorry for Natasha and Courtney. I know what they've suffered. We all do, but I also know at a young age it's easy to be influenced after such a compelling loss. Wagner influenced them.

    Even Natasha has been quoted as saying her mom was a 'flirt' -- in the particular quote, if you "listen" closely enough, it's almost as if you can sense her defense for her mom "flirting with Walken" -- well THAT didn't happen! Natalie was being nice and having a nice time with her BOAT GUEST.

    For that, she got a bottle smashed IN HER FACE and endured an argument that carried over to the back deck, and then she was left with NO RESCUE EFFORT to float and die in the ocean she so feared. Only ONE PERSON knew her situation.

    It disgusts me, and thank you for reminding me to not allow the naysayers to get to me. They are closed-minded and wouldn't know or accept the truth no matter who tells it, just as you said...even when Wagner tells it. They make excuses for his bottle smashing such as "Oh, that's as far as it would've gone." Well, it went A LOT further.

    I will always sympathize for Natalie's survivors. They never deserved such a fate. Nor did Lana, Marilyn, Roger, or Dennis, and everyone will hear from those four this Nov. 26th. I wanted ALL of their voices included, no matter what they have to say, they ALL believe Natalie's case should be reopened. Any sensible person should want that.

  5. Hi, Marti:

    Your post on your parents was beautiful and moving. It really shows why you have the drive and the integrity that you do. What you have endured personally has obviously led you to your mission.

    There will always be people who don't want to see a truth, whatever the truth might be. It is easier and safer to identify a scapegoat, of course. In this case, yes, Wagner himself could admit that he had more to do with Natalie's death, and his little brigade would still likely protest and make defenses for him. That is THEIR mission--very sad and misguided.

    Your mission will not be undone by these pathetic people. That is why the farther it has progressed, the louder and angrier they've become. I am sure that some of them know, deep down, that there is truth here, and that makes them all the more rageful and accusatory. They are powerless, and they are afraid.