I'm sure that most of the late Natalie Wood's fans (PEOPLE, Oct. 10) realized that she, like the rest of us, was not perfect or infallible. And I'm sure most of us realized that sooner or later someone would come along to expose the cracks in Natalie's halo. But how many of us expected that the first person to toss us skeletons from Natalie's closet would be her loving, grieving sister Lana?
I cannot wait until Lana Wood's book comes out in the spring. Natalie Wood was my favorite actress, and I'm glad that Lana is writing the book instead of some inside Hollywood guy. Natalie loved Lana, and by writing this book and presenting an honest portrait instead of a bunch of misleading lies, Lana will prove that she loved Natalie very much too.
What kind of sister would plant rumors of infidelity in the minds of fans who want to think only the best of Natalie? Being someone's sister doesn't give you the right to expose her private life. In fact, I think it gives you a responsibility to do the exact opposite. I don't blame Mr. Wagner for keeping his family away from this woman, who has shown herself to be inconsiderate of their feelings. In the same situation Natalie would have shown more class.
While you were ostensibly telling us about Christina Onassis' detention in Greece because of a government tax claim, you used the opportunity to make smirking remarks about her weight. Miss Onassis' body size and shape are no different from that of many women in this world, and they are her own business. Far from telling us anything important about her, you have instead told us a great deal about yourselves and your attitudes toward women.
Bainbridge Island, Wash.
I could hardly contain myself while reading your article on Christina Onassis. I only wish that when emotional, financial and romantic problems beset me, I could island-hop on my yacht in the Ionian Sea with a horde of friends. I'm content to cry in my beer, when I can afford it.
Carole A. O'Brien
There is no disputing the fact that when it comes to the superbands from Down Under, Men at Work are rapidly rising to the top—but for PEOPLE not to mention the likes of the Little River Band, Air Supply or Rick Springfield was a serious oversight.
Mission Hills, Calif.
When John Sweeney was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in the death of Dominique Dunne, a family friend said, "The verdict almost says it's okay to kill the one you love." That's nothing new. For centuries, lovers have been killing their partners in the heat of passion. When will the American judicial system realize that the true definition of these senseless acts is still murder?
Sugar Land, Texas
Picks & Pans
Your review of Kenny Rogers' new album Eyes That See in the Dark made me laugh. The very reasons that you gave for not liking the record—that it was "Rogers co-produced by a Bee Gee, singing Bee Gee songs"—was the very reason I ran out and bought it. It's the only Kenny Rogers LP I own. So Kenny departed a little from his usual ballads; I say hallelujah! And as for the Gibb brothers, why don't you swallow your jealousy and accept the talent of these brilliant men?
Linda L. Cummings
Your article on Dirk Benedict does a great disservice to the many cancer patients in need of effective anticancer therapy. While your cover blurb and headline imply that Mr. Benedict cured himself of cancer by rejecting medical advice and following a macrobiotic diet, a careful reading of the article strongly suggests that he never had cancer at all. Without a biopsy, it is virtually impossible to be certain if a tumor is malignant or benign. Contrary to what is claimed by his physician, prostate cancer is a disease of the elderly and is, in fact, extremely rare in men of Mr. Benedict's age. It is much more likely that Mr. Benedict was suffering from some form of an infection or inflammation of the prostate, conditions that may improve with dietary changes. It is exactly this type of fallacy that leads many people to attribute miraculous cures to "alternative" treatment.
Lewis J. Kampel, M.D.
In the recent article concerning Dirk Benedict's prostate, my statement was somehow misconstrued so as to distort my observation. It should have read, "From a conventional medical perspective, his recovery is remarkable. Considering his condition [not his age] at the time of diagnosis, it's very unlikely his tumor was benign." My knowledge of his personal history and the extent of his previous clinical condition and my discussion with others who had consulted with his diagnosing physician indicates that malignancy was probable. Because Mr. Benedict refused the biopsy, irrefutable proof is not available. The real issue is his tumor no longer exists. As a medical doctor utilizing macrobiotic medicine, I have documented several patients of mine who have experienced remission and dramatic improvement in their conditions. Dirk Benedict's case and other cases (for whom pathological diagnosis exists) observed and treated macrobiotically show similar results in that their tumors are now gone.
Keith I. Block, M.D.