NATALIE WOOD ////// 19

Natalie Wood and husband Robert Wagner were very much in love. Both enjoying life as living Hollywood success stories. Natalie a childhood star who had recently returned to the silver screen and Robert riding high on the wings of a highly rated television series. Their marriage was enhanced by another love: the sea. To celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday weekend the Wagners invited Natalie's "brainstorm" movie co-star Christopher Walken to join them on their yacht "Splendour" in Catalina. Drinking and bad weather we're all that was predicted for the fun holiday weekend. However Natalie's body was found floating face down in the ocean. Was Natalie killed or did she simply just drown? We'll try to figure that out tonight in the garage. 

Recommended Reading 

Coroner 
By Doctor Thomas Noguchi 
Dr. Noguchi recounts his colorful and stormy career, explains his innovative techniques and reveals the full story behind his most fascinating investigations including the deaths of Marilyn Monroe, Robert Kennedy, Sharon Tate, Janis Joplin, Natalie Wood, John Belushi and many more. 

Beer of the Week 

Russian Knight 
By Hollywood brewing company 
3-1/2 bottle caps 
A Smooth, sweet stout, medium dark color with coffee and chocolate malt. This stout is heavy, flavorful and really good tasting for a higher alcohol stout.

Check out www.truecrimegarage.com 
Cheers Nic & Captain 

17 comments

  • Dana

    Dana Ireland

    Really enjoyed your dissection of this incident. While it wouldn't take too much of a leap of the imagination to see signs of foul play--I reckon at the end of the day, it was actually just a series of unfortunate incidents and poor judgement that ended in a tragic loss of life. That being said, while I don't believe the husband nor the skipper were directly responsible for her death, I definitely feel they are at the very least share a culpability-- in that it would appear they did not do all that they could in a timely manner to assure her safety and well being. Thanks for yet another captivating episode...as always, really looking forward to the next one!

    Really enjoyed your dissection of this incident. While it wouldn't take too much of a leap of the imagination to see signs of foul play--I reckon at the end of the day, it was actually just a series of unfortunate incidents and poor judgement that ended in a tragic loss of life.
    That being said, while I don't believe the husband nor the skipper were directly responsible for her death, I definitely feel they are at the very least share a culpability-- in that it would appear they did not do all that they could in a timely manner to assure her safety and well being.
    Thanks for yet another captivating episode...as always, really looking forward to the next one!

  • Sakura ShinRa C.E.O

    Sakura ShinRa C.E.O ShinRa Towers, Midgard (New Zealand)

    Hi guys, thanks for another great episode, I really enjoyed it. I even decided to watch Brainstorm, the movie Wood was involved in when she died, it's available on Youtube if you haven't seen it. Anyway, I decided to check out the autopsy report for myself. Wow, after reading them I'm not the least bit surprised that she fell of the boat and drowned. In fact, I'm surprised she didn't fall in her soup and drown at dinner! I have some chronic health issues so I'm on a lot of medications, which has led to an interest in pharmacology, learning about different medications and what they're used for, how they work and why discontinued medications are discontinued. I'm a bit of a walking encyclopedia of information about drugs, which is geeky and weird, but useful sometimes too, like now. Natalie Wood was taking quite a few medications, and not run-of-the-mill stuff either. One of the drugs she was prescribed was discontinued in the 90s, and most of the rest are drugs that aren't often prescribed any more due to serious side effects and addiction issues. She was on two sedating antihistamines, one of them for sea sickness, which would have been one of the two medications found in the toxicology report. I take a very similar drug myself for sleep, these days doctors prescribe them for insomniacs like me because, unlike hypnotics or barbituate based sleeping pills, they're non-addictive. These drugs also come with big warnings on the label which recommend limiting your alchohol intake. For someone of Natalie Woods' weight/height, any more than a couple of glasses of wine or beer and the person would experience serious intoxication, including disorientation, blurred vision, memory loss. All the side effects of slamming vodka shots all night on an empty stomach basically. She was also taking several drugs from the addictive classes I mentioned before, hypnotics and barbituates, one of which was the other drug found in her system the night she drowned and I suspect the only reason she could walk at all was due to the fact that she'd probably built up a tolerance to some of the side effects of these drugs if she'd been on them for a long time. She would not have been thinking clearly at all, which may explain why she attempted to re-tie the dingy herself, and why she didn't try to remove her jacket after she fell in. Once she fell into the water, the drugs and alchohol she had on board would have sped up the process of hypothermia too, and since hypothermia makes the sufferer very drowsy, that combined with the sedating pills she'd taken, she probably just went to sleep and slipped into the water. I doubt very much that foul play was involved, just a tragic series of events that inevitably led to an untimely accidental death.

    Hi guys, thanks for another great episode, I really enjoyed it. I even decided to watch Brainstorm, the movie Wood was involved in when she died, it's available on Youtube if you haven't seen it. Anyway, I decided to check out the autopsy report for myself. Wow, after reading them I'm not the least bit surprised that she fell of the boat and drowned. In fact, I'm surprised she didn't fall in her soup and drown at dinner! I have some chronic health issues so I'm on a lot of medications, which has led to an interest in pharmacology, learning about different medications and what they're used for, how they work and why discontinued medications are discontinued. I'm a bit of a walking encyclopedia of information about drugs, which is geeky and weird, but useful sometimes too, like now. Natalie Wood was taking quite a few medications, and not run-of-the-mill stuff either. One of the drugs she was prescribed was discontinued in the 90s, and most of the rest are drugs that aren't often prescribed any more due to serious side effects and addiction issues. She was on two sedating antihistamines, one of them for sea sickness, which would have been one of the two medications found in the toxicology report. I take a very similar drug myself for sleep, these days doctors prescribe them for insomniacs like me because, unlike hypnotics or barbituate based sleeping pills, they're non-addictive. These drugs also come with big warnings on the label which recommend limiting your alchohol intake. For someone of Natalie Woods' weight/height, any more than a couple of glasses of wine or beer and the person would experience serious intoxication, including disorientation, blurred vision, memory loss. All the side effects of slamming vodka shots all night on an empty stomach basically. She was also taking several drugs from the addictive classes I mentioned before, hypnotics and barbituates, one of which was the other drug found in her system the night she drowned and I suspect the only reason she could walk at all was due to the fact that she'd probably built up a tolerance to some of the side effects of these drugs if she'd been on them for a long time. She would not have been thinking clearly at all, which may explain why she attempted to re-tie the dingy herself, and why she didn't try to remove her jacket after she fell in. Once she fell into the water, the drugs and alchohol she had on board would have sped up the process of hypothermia too, and since hypothermia makes the sufferer very drowsy, that combined with the sedating pills she'd taken, she probably just went to sleep and slipped into the water. I doubt very much that foul play was involved, just a tragic series of events that inevitably led to an untimely accidental death.

  • Shane

    Shane Perth WA

    Best podcast so far. Great detail. I'd rather they go longer so you can go through all the points of the case. I liked the cut of this podcasts jib

    Best podcast so far. Great detail. I'd rather they go longer so you can go through all the points of the case. I liked the cut of this podcasts jib

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    Shane nice jibbers! I think the long episodes help the rankings??? Not sure yet.

    Shane nice jibbers! I think the long episodes help the rankings??? Not sure yet.

  • Tim

    Tim Chino Hills, Ca

    I enjoyed your breakdown of the incident. However, I would be critical of one component you did not seems to mention. While this incident is "True Crime" the books written in relation to it are not. They would actually be targeted at the Current Affairs genre or Celebrity Scandal sub-genre. This means that by default every account has to have differences and those differences have to be magnified based on the teller and proximity to the center of the incident. While Dennis, the Skipper's, proximity to center was closer than mosts, the reality is how does he sell a book that tells the same story from 20 years ago without some excerpts the media can talk about. Hence, there has to be deviation and contradictions. So you take the guilt of not calling for help fast enough and change it to waiting too long to call for help. Add in a couple of opinions like she would never move the boat on her own and you have a seven minute segment on Oprah. If the case gets re-opened, you are sure to get a paperback re-printing. I would not apply this logic to most True Crime books, but it happens frequently in those that have become cottage industries like Jack the Ripper. That is why everyone has a relative that killed the Black Dahlia. Stay Golden.

    I enjoyed your breakdown of the incident. However, I would be critical of one component you did not seems to mention. While this incident is "True Crime" the books written in relation to it are not. They would actually be targeted at the Current Affairs genre or Celebrity Scandal sub-genre. This means that by default every account has to have differences and those differences have to be magnified based on the teller and proximity to the center of the incident.
    While Dennis, the Skipper's, proximity to center was closer than mosts, the reality is how does he sell a book that tells the same story from 20 years ago without some excerpts the media can talk about. Hence, there has to be deviation and contradictions. So you take the guilt of not calling for help fast enough and change it to waiting too long to call for help. Add in a couple of opinions like she would never move the boat on her own and you have a seven minute segment on Oprah. If the case gets re-opened, you are sure to get a paperback re-printing.
    I would not apply this logic to most True Crime books, but it happens frequently in those that have become cottage industries like Jack the Ripper. That is why everyone has a relative that killed the Black Dahlia.
    Stay Golden.


  • Vicki

    Vicki

    Loved this episode. I have heard Natalie had a drinking problem so she was pretty tolerant I would think to alcohol's effects. That doesn't mean she didn't have way too much. What I have trouble reconciling is that she has that down jacket on. So she got out of bed and put a jacket on to go to the top deck--she had the wherewithall to do that. Dennis said if the dinghy needed to be moved she would have woken him, and it sounds like she would have asked him to take her ashore if she was planning that. She didn't smoke did she? Trying to figure why she gets out of bed to go to the deck and knows she will be up there long enough to need a jacket. No shoes or pants so I don't think she was planning to go ashore. It seems like if she fell and that jacket was weighing her down she would have taken it off. I recall when this happened the news media was saying they thought that the jacket was so heavy it helped cause the drowning, but it's odd that she was found floating if they were putting forth the theory that the jacket caused her to sink. Very strange. She had to do a swimming in dark water scene in the movie "Splendor in the Grass" as well. Her character attempts suicide or does this because she has a nervous breakdown. She was a lovely woman and it's a shame this happened to her. I've heard allegations that she was assaulted by a certain popular actor who is still alive today. He has been accused of taking advantage of more than one starlet but the film industry of the time covered for him. He was also implicated as a suspect in the disappearance of Jean Spangler. Hollywood sometimes covers for it's stars, and it sounds like the incident was whitewashed to protect Wagner and Walken from scandal as well.

    Loved this episode. I have heard Natalie had a drinking problem so she was pretty tolerant I would think to alcohol's effects. That doesn't mean she didn't have way too much. What I have trouble reconciling is that she has that down jacket on. So she got out of bed and put a jacket on to go to the top deck--she had the wherewithall to do that. Dennis said if the dinghy needed to be moved she would have woken him, and it sounds like she would have asked him to take her ashore if she was planning that. She didn't smoke did she? Trying to figure why she gets out of bed to go to the deck and knows she will be up there long enough to need a jacket. No shoes or pants so I don't think she was planning to go ashore. It seems like if she fell and that jacket was weighing her down she would have taken it off. I recall when this happened the news media was saying they thought that the jacket was so heavy it helped cause the drowning, but it's odd that she was found floating if they were putting forth the theory that the jacket caused her to sink. Very strange.

    She had to do a swimming in dark water scene in the movie "Splendor in the Grass" as well. Her character attempts suicide or does this because she has a nervous breakdown. She was a lovely woman and it's a shame this happened to her. I've heard allegations that she was assaulted by a certain popular actor who is still alive today. He has been accused of taking advantage of more than one starlet but the film industry of the time covered for him. He was also implicated as a suspect in the disappearance of Jean Spangler. Hollywood sometimes covers for it's stars, and it sounds like the incident was whitewashed to protect Wagner and Walken from scandal as well.

  • Emma

    Emma

    Thank you for this episode, i really enjoy your long ones, they are the best! :)

    Thank you for this episode, i really enjoy your long ones, they are the best! smile

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    Emma that's what she said Captain

    Emma that's what she said
    Captain

  • Mailman

    Mailman Portland

    Nice job guys. Couple things. I totally back up the idea of drugs flowing and foggy recollections. Just consider the year this happened and I mean just look at walken! Screams coke. Other thing I thought was odd were the bruises. Sounded like hand or finger bruises from possibly picking up (and throwing overboard) or dragging someone who is out cold. People do really stupid shit when they are drunk and stoned. Finally I think Dennis had plenty to lose. He had his job on the line to back up his remaining employer and it fell play really had gone down possibly his freedom

    Nice job guys. Couple things. I totally back up the idea of drugs flowing and foggy recollections. Just consider the year this happened and I mean just look at walken! Screams coke. Other thing I thought was odd were the bruises. Sounded like hand or finger bruises from possibly picking up (and throwing overboard) or dragging someone who is out cold. People do really stupid shit when they are drunk and stoned. Finally I think Dennis had plenty to lose. He had his job on the line to back up his remaining employer and it fell play really had gone down possibly his freedom

  • True Crime Garage

    True Crime Garage

    Mailman that's a great name! Great ideas! Thanks Captain

    Mailman that's a great name! Great ideas! Thanks
    Captain

  • Mark

    Mark Toronto, Canada

    Dudes! You really need to brush up on your Classic Christmas viewing. Sheesh! You butchered Miracle on 34th Street, but had me laughing hysterically. I may not even have this right but I believe the correct synopsis is that Kris Kringle really believes that he is the real Santa, and goes on trial to that effect - and little Natalie Wood, initially in doubt is his staunchest defender. Or something like that. Fascinating case. And one that really hung around Walken like a bad smell. Agreed, don't think he was involved at all. You guys should do a remote in Canada. No garage, but my brother in law has a hell of a shed!! LOL Come up for the beer alone. Cheers Lads!

    Dudes! You really need to brush up on your Classic Christmas viewing. Sheesh! You butchered Miracle on 34th Street, but had me laughing hysterically.
    I may not even have this right but I believe the correct synopsis is that Kris Kringle really believes that he is the real Santa, and goes on trial to that effect - and little Natalie Wood, initially in doubt is his staunchest defender. Or something like that.
    Fascinating case. And one that really hung around Walken like a bad smell. Agreed, don't think he was involved at all.
    You guys should do a remote in Canada. No garage, but my brother in law has a hell of a shed!! LOL
    Come up for the beer alone.
    Cheers Lads!

  • Sarah

    Sarah

    Just started listening to your podcast. Love it. I can totally see how this could have been an accident. For whatever reason, Natalie is messing with the dinghy and falls into the water. Maybe there was an argument, she storms off. Robert thinks she's gone off to go to bed. Maybe she storms off and decides to leave in the dinghy. Maybe she is trying to tighten the lines of the dinghy. Wait, was that part assumed? That the dinghy woke her and she went to tighten the lines. How would anyone know? Ok, now I'm going to assume that it was related to an argument. With her history of being scared of "dark water" and being very intoxicated, Natalie probably panicked when she fell in the water. She may not have been thinking clearly enough to take off the jacket. Also, if she's scared of water does she know how to swim? So, she's hanging onto whatever she can on the side of the dinghy, maybe a line of some sort. She doesn't have the strength to pull herself into the dinghy, which explains why it doesn't show that it was in use. Currents are pushing the dinghy away from the yacht. Eventually, she dies from hypothermia and loses her grip on the dinghy. She's found floating in the water and currents eventually pushed the dinghy further south onto the beach. I wonder if it's possible that some of the "bruises" may have been lividity. Forensics come an exceptionally long way since 1981. If she's floating face down and there's the appearance of bruises on the front, lower portion of her legs, is it possible it was actually lividity? It may not be typical lividity like what's seen when a body is on a solid surface. The constant movement of the body and water could have created an unusual formation and appearance in the lividity also. Thanks so much for the show.

    Just started listening to your podcast. Love it. I can totally see how this could have been an accident. For whatever reason, Natalie is messing with the dinghy and falls into the water. Maybe there was an argument, she storms off. Robert thinks she's gone off to go to bed. Maybe she storms off and decides to leave in the dinghy. Maybe she is trying to tighten the lines of the dinghy. Wait, was that part assumed? That the dinghy woke her and she went to tighten the lines. How would anyone know? Ok, now I'm going to assume that it was related to an argument. With her history of being scared of "dark water" and being very intoxicated, Natalie probably panicked when she fell in the water. She may not have been thinking clearly enough to take off the jacket. Also, if she's scared of water does she know how to swim? So, she's hanging onto whatever she can on the side of the dinghy, maybe a line of some sort. She doesn't have the strength to pull herself into the dinghy, which explains why it doesn't show that it was in use. Currents are pushing the dinghy away from the yacht. Eventually, she dies from hypothermia and loses her grip on the dinghy. She's found floating in the water and currents eventually pushed the dinghy further south onto the beach. I wonder if it's possible that some of the "bruises" may have been lividity. Forensics come an exceptionally long way since 1981. If she's floating face down and there's the appearance of bruises on the front, lower portion of her legs, is it possible it was actually lividity? It may not be typical lividity like what's seen when a body is on a solid surface. The constant movement of the body and water could have created an unusual formation and appearance in the lividity also. Thanks so much for the show.

  • Melissa

    Melissa California desert

    I don't think Wagner had anything to do with it. I think i would've lied to the police about smashing a bottle too. Maybe Dennis knows more and that is why he continued to say she was missing for hours. Maybe it did take an hour to search the boat. Warner could have been off on the time he noticed his wife missing and I assume he went to look for her before he woke up everyone else and then they did a full search of the boat. It also makes sense that Dennis would have found Wagner calm after seeing the dinghy was missing. He likely realized his wife was fine and possibly stubborn and took the boat for a ride. Sounds like a group of friends partying, drinking and arguing. I think Dennis also said he heard Wagner and Wood arguing and they stopped. My first thought was one or the other walked off...likely Wagner... then Wood decided to get back at him for walking away by taking the boat in the middle of the night. Also, if he could hear them fighting and suddenly calm, wouldn't he have heard a struggle or her body falling into the ocean?

    I don't think Wagner had anything to do with it. I think i would've lied to the police about smashing a bottle too. Maybe Dennis knows more and that is why he continued to say she was missing for hours. Maybe it did take an hour to search the boat. Warner could have been off on the time he noticed his wife missing and I assume he went to look for her before he woke up everyone else and then they did a full search of the boat. It also makes sense that Dennis would have found Wagner calm after seeing the dinghy was missing. He likely realized his wife was fine and possibly stubborn and took the boat for a ride. Sounds like a group of friends partying, drinking and arguing. I think Dennis also said he heard Wagner and Wood arguing and they stopped. My first thought was one or the other walked off...likely Wagner... then Wood decided to get back at him for walking away by taking the boat in the middle of the night. Also, if he could hear them fighting and suddenly calm, wouldn't he have heard a struggle or her body falling into the ocean?

  • Melissa

    Melissa California desert

    ...one more thing. How does Walken play so little part in all this? Did he purposely stay asleep to avoid any confrontation? Did he avoid taking about it? If so, why? The others at least had a story to tell. Idk...weird it seems he kept a low profile through all this. ..it seems.

    ...one more thing. How does Walken play so little part in all this? Did he purposely stay asleep to avoid any confrontation? Did he avoid taking about it? If so, why? The others at least had a story to tell. Idk...weird it seems he kept a low profile through all this. ..it seems.

  • Joy

    Joy NJ

    As someone who's spent a good amount of time on both small and large boats, I can attest it's very hard to get yourself back onto both a dinghy/lifeboat or a yacht (even with stairs) if you don't have a lot of upper body strength, as your center of gravity is under the water, and it can be especially difficult for women as we have a lower center of gravity. A combination of alcohol, painkillers and motion sickness drugs (all of which are respiratory depressants by themselves, let alone combined) could have made her weak, drowsy, and struggling to breathe well, as you said. As for the captain saying "she wouldn't have messed with the dinghy, she would have had me do it because that was my job" I think that can be instantly discounted bc a) she was intoxicated and not thinking clearly b) she probably was embarrassed or still angry, having been involved in the argument and didn't want to talk to anyone. I'm 99% convinced her death was truly accidental, but if RJ truly delayed looking for/rescuing her to "teach her a lesson" he is truly culpable, and a scumbag. PS I enjoyed your Shatner reference with the "you say sabotage, I say sabo-taj" comment XD

    As someone who's spent a good amount of time on both small and large boats, I can attest it's very hard to get yourself back onto both a dinghy/lifeboat or a yacht (even with stairs) if you don't have a lot of upper body strength, as your center of gravity is under the water, and it can be especially difficult for women as we have a lower center of gravity. A combination of alcohol, painkillers and motion sickness drugs (all of which are respiratory depressants by themselves, let alone combined) could have made her weak, drowsy, and struggling to breathe well, as you said. As for the captain saying "she wouldn't have messed with the dinghy, she would have had me do it because that was my job" I think that can be instantly discounted bc a) she was intoxicated and not thinking clearly b) she probably was embarrassed or still angry, having been involved in the argument and didn't want to talk to anyone. I'm 99% convinced her death was truly accidental, but if RJ truly delayed looking for/rescuing her to "teach her a lesson" he is truly culpable, and a scumbag.

    PS I enjoyed your Shatner reference with the "you say sabotage, I say sabo-taj" comment XD

  • Seton

    Seton NC

    What does everyone think about the fact that the case has been reopened and Robert Wagner has been named a "person of interest"?

    What does everyone think about the fact that the case has been reopened and Robert Wagner has been named a "person of interest"?

  • Matriarch

    Matriarch Canada

    Seton (NC), read the actual report before you assume that RW has just now been named a person of interest. If you read the actual transcripts from the police, RW has ALWAYS been a person of interest, because he was (a) her husband and (b) quite likely the last person to see her alive. They have also said that he is not a suspect. People have been saying "he is refusing to give interviews to the investigators". Well, he is NOW refusing to do that, but he has given five or six over the last 30 years and, at 87 years of age, perhaps he doesn't have a lot left to say. At that age, it is possible he has some level of dementia or other memory issues. Having lived through two major traumatic events, including the sudden death of a spouse, I can personally confirm that a lot of the details fade with time -- things you think you will never forget, you forget. Experts agree that memory is fluid and changes...it isn't like a snapshot and memories can be coloured by things, including other people's statements, over time. I understand her sister's anger, but she hasn't always blamed RW...she started AFTER she talked to the captain, who has also changed his story five or more times. Every decade or so, he pops up with a new version, makes some money and vanishes again. Her sister isn't doing all that well, either. If RW was so cold-blooded to be able to successfully cover up a murder for over 30 years, I think it would be showing by now. Witnesses popping up after 30 years? Saying "well no one ever asked"? You think you know someone was murdered and you say nothing for 30 years? Ooookkkay. Natalie had been seen in the dinghy by herself, more than once, over the weekend. It is in the original investigation and the witness was an independent witness, not someone on the Splendour. Walken and RW were not friends -- it was Natalie and Walken that were -- so this ridiculous rumour about RW and CW "hooking up"....don't even go there. BTW, despite reports, he didn't remarry immediately after Natalie's death-- it was 9 years later and to someone who had been a friend of both of theirs for a number of years. Could RW be guilty? Yeah, sure. But I think that people are jumping to conclusions based on fairy dust and media spin. He could have pushed her over. More likely he (AND the captain) are guilty of negligence, although we don't know how things normally were between the two of them -- perhaps she often took off after an argument. Or maybe the combination of massive amounts of alcohol combined with depressant medications just blurred her judgement and she slipped and couldn't get back in. If there are questions, let the investigation handle it. But no one should be judging someone guilty and making all sorts of gossipy statements ... it doesn't honour the deceased and it doesn't help solve the mystery.

    Seton (NC), read the actual report before you assume that RW has just now been named a person of interest. If you read the actual transcripts from the police, RW has ALWAYS been a person of interest, because he was (a) her husband and (b) quite likely the last person to see her alive. They have also said that he is not a suspect. People have been saying "he is refusing to give interviews to the investigators". Well, he is NOW refusing to do that, but he has given five or six over the last 30 years and, at 87 years of age, perhaps he doesn't have a lot left to say. At that age, it is possible he has some level of dementia or other memory issues. Having lived through two major traumatic events, including the sudden death of a spouse, I can personally confirm that a lot of the details fade with time --
    things you think you will never forget, you forget. Experts agree that memory is fluid and changes...it isn't like a snapshot and memories can be coloured by things, including other people's statements, over time. I understand her sister's anger, but she hasn't always blamed RW...she started AFTER she talked to the captain, who has also changed his story five or more times. Every decade or so, he pops up with a new version, makes some money and vanishes again. Her sister isn't doing all that well, either. If RW was so cold-blooded to be able to successfully cover up a murder for over 30 years, I think it would be showing by now. Witnesses popping up after 30 years? Saying "well no one ever asked"? You think you know someone was murdered and you say nothing for 30 years? Ooookkkay. Natalie had been seen in the dinghy by herself, more than once, over the weekend. It is in the original investigation and the witness was an independent witness, not someone on the Splendour. Walken and RW were not friends -- it was Natalie and Walken that were -- so this ridiculous rumour about RW and CW "hooking up"....don't even go there. BTW, despite reports, he didn't remarry immediately after Natalie's death-- it was 9 years later and to someone who had been a friend of both of theirs for a number of years. Could RW be guilty? Yeah, sure. But I think that people are jumping to conclusions based on fairy dust and media spin. He could have pushed her over. More likely he (AND the captain) are guilty of negligence, although we don't know how things normally were between the two of them -- perhaps she often took off after an argument. Or maybe the combination of massive amounts of alcohol combined with depressant medications just blurred her judgement and she slipped and couldn't get back in. If there are questions, let the investigation handle it. But no one should be judging someone guilty and making all sorts of gossipy statements ... it doesn't honour the deceased and it doesn't help solve the mystery.

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