By Debbie Emery – Radar Reporter
Sunday marked the 50th anniversary of Marilyn Monroe‘s shocking death at age 36, and despite five decades of debate, the passing of the iconic Hollywood bombshell is still shrouded in mystery.
On August 5, 1962, the body of the legendary Some Like It Hot star was found by her housekeeper in the bedroom of her Brentwood, Calif., home lying face down on her bed, and although it was ruled a “probable suicide” by “acute barbiturate poisoning,” many still believe she was murdered.
Whether she took her own life or someone else had a hand in it has been the subject of heated debates and investigation for the past half century, with conspiracy theories covering the highest profile suspects including the president, the CIA and the Mafia.
One popular opinion is that Marilyn was murdered because of her associations with John and Robert Kennedy (with whom she is believed to have had separate affairs with at the same time), with speculation that JFK may have been the last person whom she called.
The ongoing rampant rumors prompted the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office to reexamine the case in 1982, which sparked new questions about the involvement of late actor Peter Lawford, who was married to Patricia Kennedy at the time.
According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, Marilyn allegedly called Lawford distraught on the night of her death and he told her, “My God, Marilyn, don’t leave any note behind!”
Deborah Gould, the third of Lawford’s four wives, went on to reveal that he went over to Monroe’s house and destroyed a note he had found. She said Lawford was to “cover up all the dirty work and take care of everything.” However, before his death, the actor denied the allegations and called it “fabrication.”
Ultimately, the new investigation still gave no assertive answers into what really happened that night, and the D.A.’s review concluded that “the cumulative evidence available to us fails to support any theory of criminal conduct relating to her death.”
Known to be drinking heavily and popping pills, Marilyn is said to have been depressed in the months leading up to her death, and she began seeing her psychiatrist, Dr. Ralph Greenson, on an almost daily basis in a relationship that became highly dependent.
During that time the FBI began compiling an ever-growing file on her activities. The Mafia was also keeping a watchful eye on her relationships after she was repeatedly seen in the company of either JFK or Bobby Kennedy. The president is even said to have given her a private number so she could call him at the justice department, reported TruTv.com, and she imagined that he would one day divorce Jackie and make her “First Lady.”
While it sounds far-fetched that the actress could have died by order of the president, biographer Donald Wolfe revealed: “Marilyn Monroe was in a position to bring down the presidency. She was cognizant of Jack Kennedy’s marital infidelities and other private matters.
“She had his notes and letters and was privy to Kennedy’s involvement with Sam Giancana. That the Kennedy brothers had discussed national security matters with the film star added to an astonishing array of indiscretions.”
Adding to the intrigue is the fact that FBI files, which were filed under “Foreign Counterintelligence,” are missing, according to CBS News. The Associated Press attempted to obtain a complete record of the FBI’s monitoring of the superstar under the Freedom of Information Act, but to no avail. The FBI no longer has them, nor does the National Archives.
The exact events surrounding Marilyn’s death will most likely never be known, but with best-selling books continuing to hit shelves and last year’s big screen biopic My Life With Marilyn capturing the attention of millions, it is clear that her legend will live on for years to come.