Back in 1962, on the night Marilyn died, to the left of the bed on which her body was discovered there sat a chest-of-drawers, and in that bureau was found a plain manila envelope, inside which there were some photographs of what might be called her children; in fact, these were pictures of her stepchildren. Images of Joe DiMaggio Jr, images of Jane and Bobby Miller, the children to whom Marilyn had been a stepmother during her lifetime. The only other image in that envelope was a picture of Jimmy Haspiel, ‘For the one and only Jimmy…Love you, Marilyn.’ I’ll just leave it there.
And while I will not say how this was accomplished, I can tell you that there is a snapshot of Marilyn and myself, a small message from me to her written on the back, now in the crypt with her remains.
Little more than a month after Marilyn died, on September 8th, 1962, I hosted a ‘Tribute to Marilyn’ night at my then home on West 73rd Street, an evening that was attended by, among others, the Monroe Six, and by Paula and Lee Strasberg. I showed those gathered together there my home movies of Marilyn, we all looked over the hundreds of candid snapshots that we had taken over the years, and we reminisced long into the night about our ‘Mazzie’. Throughout the evening, Lee remained totally silent, conspicuously so, and I was quietly dismayed by this. But later on, as the Strasbergs departed, at the door, Lee said to me about the evening now ending, ‘A lot of love went into that, Jim.’ What neither of us knew in that moment was that these decades later the love is yet there, firmly, securely in place, eternal.
‘I remember when you were seventeen, Jimmy.’ Well, dear Marilyn, I still remember that first night at the St. Regis, when you were twenty-eight, and for much of the world, you will always be that age, ever beautiful, ever wistful, ever the beacon of light so wonderfully realized out of the quiet dreams of a child known as Norma Jeane.