Although we often don't understand what led to the obsession, this particular case is one that we know the cause.
An Obsession Turned Dangerous
Photo credit: Harris & Ewing
Stalkers and deranged fans are another concern that celebrities have to deal with. John Lennon, Selena, and Dimebag Darrell are just a few entertainers who were killed by people obsessed with them. Many others were put in physical danger. And, as it turns out, this happened in the Golden Age of Hollywood as well.
We go back to Shirley Temple, who had a very close call when she was just ten years old. It was 1939, and Shirley was performing Silent Night on a live radio show when a woman tried to assassinate her. Fortunately, the would-be assassin was subdued in time.
Tragically, the woman’s daughter had passed away on the same day (allegedly the same hour) that Shirley Temple was born. Since then, she became obsessed with the idea that her daughter’s soul was trapped in the child star’s body and that she would be setting it free by killing the actress.
As far as Temple was concerned, she sympathized with her would-be killer. In her autobiography, she said that “the tale seemed understandable to me.”
We too often think that mental illness can affect the young and old, rich or poor, famous and not-so-famous equally. I feel that we often don't do enough, but what do I know?
Coffee inside today. Just too hot do do the patio thing.