The Falling

My apologies for not posting in so long–it’s been a busy past few months.

Here is a passage I wrote for my upcoming book, “Human Wreckage” about my life as Lucille Ricksen. I will not be using this chapter–I wrote this about a year ago and have since changed the way I’ll be writing my book thus making this chapter useless. Thought I’d share it since it is very personal to me & I feel it’s beneficial to those who are searching for the truth of some things.

This has not been edited much and is a very rough cut of my writing–there will be errors but should still be an interesting read.

This is all in the point of view of Lucille Ricksen.

Hope you enjoy.

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The Falling

“I’ve never known anyone so full of joy”
Lois would sob as news of my death became public. Other co stars would say,
“She was a sweet natured girl who gave happiness to everyone she met”
Newspapers published that I had died from a broken heart–a victim of the worlds cruelty. In reality, I was a victim of Hollywood.
I was laid to rest the day before Sydney’s [Sydney Chaplin] birthday, March 15th.
Jack and Mary Pickford, the Chaplin brothers, Lois and others decorated my coffin with beautiful flowers. Many celebrities attended; it seemed only like a Hollywood gathering. A big party. Definitely not an event where they laid a little girl to rest.
There were also some anonymous grievers surrounding the venue of the tightley woven famous crowd. Those who wanted to send their wishes and respect.
Like I had wished in the last weeks of my life, I was cremated. My mothers ashes were mixed among mine and we were interred in Forest Lawn Memorial Park. I was one of the earliest stars to be locked in the stone shelf.
Many stars will join me in the years to come.

Grief wrapped its arms around Paul Bern so heavily that he decided to leave Hollywood for two weeks – the first vacation he had ever taken from work. He chose to travel to Arizona.

Unfortunately, I was not the only leading lady Paul had to watch pass from destruction, I was only the first. In 1926, he helped struggling beauty, Barbara La Marr, who was suffering from drug and alcohol abuse. Just like he had with me, he paid for her nurses and any other bills that she had. And like me, she was diagnosed with tuberculosis along with nephritis.
He gave Barbara one last script, one last chance to say goodbye to the screen. The Girl From Montmartre is the name, which she completed but never lived to see. Barbara passed away January 30th, 1926 at the age of 29, just before the film was due for release.
In 1930, Paul supported his good friend Mabel Normand, when she was dying of tuberculosis. Just like he had with Barbara and I, he sat with Mabel, held her hand and gently spoke kind words with her.
He had a special power to calm before the eyes of death. He held life and death in his hands. Though he certainly would not intentionally cause death among us ladies; it was as if with his touch, we knew we could make it to the other side – the light, safely. The afterlife. We arrived in perfect harmony with spirits, to the afterlife, because of him.
The same delicate hands of his that guided us held a gun up to his own head and shot away the life left inside of him. He had just married his first wife, the glamourous blonde bombshell, Jean Harlow, only two months before. He was 42 years old.
I still and will continue to miss him. Every girl he graced with his presence remains deeply touched. Despite what some may speak of him, he was an angel to the falling ladies of Hollywood.

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The Photo Album

I love all pictures of anyone who was associated with Lucille. Weekly I am going to try to share my favorite pics!!

Here’s some to start off.

Pictured is Conrad Nagel and his daughter Ruth, Jack and Mary Pickford, Paul Bern and Jean Harlow, Robert Agnew and Lucille.

Conrad and his daughter Ruth.
Conrad and his daughter Ruth.
Jack  Pickford with his sister Mary.
Jack Pickford with his sister Mary.
Paul Bern and Jean Harlow
Paul with his first wife Jean Harlow.

 

Lucille in her final film role, The Denial (1925)
Lucille in her final film role, The Denial (1925)

 

Until next post, Best wishes! – AmyXo

Story/Excerpt From My Book

I am working on a book about my life as Lucille Ricksen. I am writing it as a memoir. It will contain memories I have and the events that molded and shaped my life and untimely death.

I am almost fully completed with the first draft and I could not be more happy with the result! It’s not perfect but I am happy with the work I have done so far.

I’m going to share some of the stories that I remember. This is not what will be written in the book, they are just fragments of memories as they come to me. I’m working now on filling in the pieces for my book. There will be a ton of mistakes so please don’t be to harsh.

This story consists of Jack & Mary Pickford on set of the film The Hill Billy, and stories that Syd Chaplin had told me. It’s a short, sad story. But it is one that I remember well.

Hope you enjoy!!

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One thing I remember specifically about Jack — he loved Coca Cola. I would see him walk around set with the glass bottle, sipping it down like it was his last drink. Knowing him, he probably spiked it with liquor.
Mary would often visit the set. All I can say about Mary is that she was stunning. Her golden hair bounced at her shoulders and her smile was darling. She is very small. She was wearing a white, casual lace gown with a sun hat when I first saw her. Mary is simply as cute as a button.
I would always observe Mary and Jack very closely from afar. Jack is only a few inches, if that, taller than Mary. She has such confidence about her; you know that she knows she is powerful. Jack, however, exceeds almost little to no confidence at all. Especially when he’s by Mary.
The more I worked with Jack, the more I felt sorry for him.
He often got himself into a lot of trouble, which explains why Mary and his mother would check up on him on set. I never saw the “bad” or “evil” side of Jack, and my guess is that almost none of his other co stars did.
He drank a lot. But only in his own privacy. Sometimes, if he drank enough, he would call out for a girl who had been dead for 4 years:
Olive.
He would call out for her into the lonesome night, with only his echoes returning back to him.
Syd had told me stories of Jack. Painful stories that Mary had apparently blabbed to Charlie, among other people.
Stories of how Olive would plead to Jack,
“Don’t let me die! I don’t want to die!” She would beg him.
Olive died in his arms and he had been living with her voices in his head ever since.
He drank to silence the voices.

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*Olive is Jack’s first wife who was poisoned on their second honeymoon in Paris of 1920. He was 24 years old when this happened.

Lucille & Friends.

One thing that “Ghost Inside My Child” did not have time to share is how much support and friends Lucille Ricksen had! I thought I’d share  who all took care of her and who Lucille’s closest friends were.

Conrad Nagel & Rupert Hughes.

Conrad and Lucille starred in The Rendezvous together, Lucille’s first leading lady role in 1923. They remained very close up until her death. He and Rupert Hughes adopted Lucille and her brother Marshall after their mothers untimely death. After Lucille passed, they still took care of Marshall. The three of them always remained close.

Conrad Nagel in a promo for The Rendezvous
Conrad Nagel in a promo for The Rendezvous
Rupert Hughes
Rupert Hughes
Conrad and Lucille in The Rendezvous
Conrad and Lucille in The Rendezvous. Lucille is 12 years old here.

 

Syd Chaplin and Marshall Neilan.

Marshall directed many of Lucille’s films and Syd starred alongside her in many films. They all were great friends. However, when Lucille became ill, all ties were cut between them. Marshall and Syd never visited Lucille on her death bed or attended the funeral.

They were the best of friends while Lucille was alive and well.

Lucille and Marshall Neilan on set of The Rendezvous
Lucille and Marshall Neilan on set of The Rendezvous
Lucille, Syd, Marshall and Conrad on set of The Rendezvous.
Lucille, Syd, Marshall and Conrad on set of The Rendezvous.

Lois Wilson.

Lucille and Lois met through Conrad. They became close instantly. They were like sisters to each other, Lucille even called her, “her big sister”.

Lois was by her bedside every single say, even being there when Lucille passed away. Lois was devastated by her death.

Lois Wilson
Lois Wilson

 

Paul Bern.

Paul paid for all of Lucille’s medical bills and made sure nurses were present to take care of her. He bought Lucille magazines and presents while she was sick. He was there also when she passed.

Paul Bern.
Paul Bern.

 

Jack Pickford.

Jack and Lucille met at the WAMPA Baby Stars party in early 1924 and soon became very close friends. They starred in The Hill Billy together.

After Lucille’s death Jack and his sister Mary decorated her memorial with flowers.

Lucille and Jack in The Hill Billy
Lucille and Jack in The Hill Billy

 

Marshal Ricksen and mother Ingeborg.

Marshall in 1929, 4 years after the death of his mother and sister.
Marshall in 1929, 4 years after the death of his mother and sister.
Lucille Ricksen and brother Marshall. Shortly before Lucille's bedridden illness.
Lucille Ricksen and brother Marshall. Shortly before Lucille’s bedridden illness. Courtesy of Michael Ankerich and the Ricksen family.

 

Lucille with mother Ingeborg and brother Marshall. Courtesy of Michael Ankerich and the Ricksen family.
Lucille with mother Ingeborg and brother Marshall. Courtesy of Michael Ankerich and the Ricksen family.