In the years after President John F. Kennedy's assassination, Jackie, his stunning widow, had many suitors and well-heeled escorts. These excerpts from "The Good Son" describe how Onassis cheated on Jackie O with opera star Maria Callas from the outset of their marriage and then, although the couple never divorced before his own death incommitted a final incredible act of betrayal.
Five minutes after Bobby's death was announced, Onassis called his closest friend, Costa Gratsos, in Athens. Just days after Bobby was laid to rest, Ari arrived at Hammersmith Farm with his daughter, Christina, in tow.
He was repulsive, of course, but it wasn't just the money. He was so alive, so vibrant, and so vigorous. He was this life force.
Nor did it help that everyone knew Onassis was still carrying on his affair with Callas. Doris Lilly was booed and heckled when she predicted on television's popular "The Merv Griffin Show" that Jackie was about to marry Onassis.
Leaving the show's Times Square studios, Lilly was then pushed, kicked, and cursed at as she walked down the street. The rest of the Kennedys were no less outraged. When Pierre Salinger, who had been let in early on Jackie's plans, confirmed to Kennedy family spokesman Stephen Smith that she was indeed going to marry Onassis, Smith could only manage a two-word response: During those first few weeks after the wedding, Jackie was left alone on Skorpios while her husband boomeranged from Athens to Paris and back again on business.
Feeling abandoned, at least temporarily, Jackie dashed off a heartfelt letter to Roswell Gilpatric. I saw somewhere what you had said and I was touched — dear Ros — I hope you know all you were and are and will ever be to me — With my love, Jackie. Onassis somehow got wind of Jackie's note to Ros and dashed back to his bride's side. He spent the next three weeks honeymooning with Jackie on Skorpios.
They swam, sunbathed, went for long walks across the island, snorkeled, and fed the miniature horses stabled on the island. They sailed the Christina to Rhodes, and when it was over, she joined John and Caroline in Manhattan.
With Jackie out of the picture, Ari began bombarding Callas with roses and phone calls.
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It was only when he showed up outside her Paris apartment at 36 Avenue Georges Mandel and threatened to crash his Mercedes through the front door that she finally relented. Starting with discreet dinners in out-of-the-way restaurants, the couple rekindled their romance.
From this point on Ari and Callas, who now bitterly referred to Jackie as "the False Lady," saw each other almost constantly, according to Onassis's longtime chauffeur Jacinto Rosa. She was his 'real wife' — even though they weren't officially married. Jackie often looked down from the window of her apartment and saw Ari and her son walking hand in hand, Onassis leaning down to say something to John, then tilting his head The hustler jackie kennedy nude photos hear the boy's response.
Later, she told Kiki Moutsatsos that she wondered exactly what her husband meant.
I wouldn't think twice about it. Jackie was not convinced.
Although cracks in the relationship had already begun to show, it was a single indiscretion that signaled the beginning of the end for the Onassis marriage. In Februaryfive of the highly personal letters Jackie had written to Roswell Gilpatric The hustler jackie kennedy nude photos four written while she was married to Jack as well as the note she dashed off during her honeymoon with Ari — fell into the hands of Manhattan autograph dealer Charles Hamilton. Ari didn't mind being portrayed as an uncouth cretin, a pirate, a dirty old man, or even a crook.
By way of retaliation, on May 21,Ari dined openly with Callas at Maxim's in Paris — and made certain photographers were there to capture the moment. But he also had a ringside seat for his mother's characteristically swift and inspired reaction.