What comes to mind when you think of Robert Wagner? Many think about the tragic 1981 death of his wife, actress Natalie Wood, but it’s quite the opposite for the Hart to Hart star. Even though he misses her dearly, he’s put all that behind him. What he’s focused on now is his upcoming 90th birthday on February 10.
“He’s low-key, so he will probably have a small dinner with family and friends,” an insider exclusively tells Closer Weekly in the magazine’s latest issue, on newsstands now. But just because he’s turning the big 9-0 doesn’t mean Robert feels his age.
“He’s always been physically fit,” the insider explained. “He still skis, rides horses, loves to play golf and has a trainer who comes three times a week.”
Robert will no doubt have a great time for his special day. However, the one thing he’s never been able to escape is Natalie’s death. She drowned in the waters off Catalina Island at age 43 and, at the time, she was boating with her husband and Brainstorm costar Christopher Walken.
Before she fell overboard, it’s believed Natalie went on the deck to tie up a loose dinghy. “She slipped and rolled into the water,” Robert explained in a 2008 interview with the L.A. Times. “I have gone over it so many millions of times with people. Nobody heard anything.”
Although the actor was seen as a person of interest in her death, Robert claims he’s loved Natalie until the very end. “We were such a romantic couple,” he said. “She was such a big part of my life.”
Robert’s stepdaughter, Natasha Wagner, who he raised as his own, even recalls how hard it was for the A-lister to move on. “When I would look at him from my bedroom window, walking into the house, there was a heaviness and a sadness to him that hadn’t been there before,” she explained, according to ABC News. “My relationship with my stepdad is way deeper than it would have been if my mom had lived, because he had to be my mom and dad.”
Robert later remarried actress Jill St. John in 1990 and he feels grateful to have overcome so much hardship in his life. “I am very content,” he has said. “I have had a wonderful run, and I’ve had a lot of fun doing it.”
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