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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Top 20 MEXILE's Best Posts Ever ((11-20))
(Rock Hudson True Love)


Fue considerado por Rock Hudson, la leyenda del cine que murió de SIDA hace 30 años, como su "verdadero amor". Se trata de Lee Garlington, extra de cine y corredor de bolsa jubilado, que a los 77 años rompió su silencio y decidió contar cómo él y el famoso actor mantuvieron en secreto su relación gay en la prejuiciosa década de 1960. "Nadie en su sano juicio habría pensado en salir del clóset. Era un suicidio profesional así que todos simulábamos ser heterosexuales", contó Garlington a la revista "People". Por ello, durante los tres años que duró su relación, ambos hicieron todo lo posible para que nadie se enterara que eran pareja. "Él era un amor. Yo lo adoraba", recuerda Garlington, quien siendo un anónimo extra conoció a Hudson en 1962.

Así recuerda el flechazo: "Él era la mayor estrella de cine en el mundo, y los rumores decían que era gay. Así que pensé: 'a ver si logro poner un ojo sobre él’. Me puse de pie fuera de su casa, fingiendo leer un número de la revista Variety. Pero pasó todo al revés. Cuando salió por la calle, miró hacia atrás una vez, donde estaba yo, y eso fue todo". "La primera vez que salimos yo estaba muerto de miedo. Él era gigante, medía 1,95 y me ofreció una cerveza, pero no pasó nada, yo estaba demasiado nervioso y me dijo que nos juntáramos de nuevo. Y así lo hicimos".

Ya con la relación consolidada, para no despertar sospechas, Garlington recuerda que cuando se quedaba en casa de Hudson, trataban de que no se notara. Así, por ejemplo, no encendía el motor del auto cuando dejaba su mansión, utilizando la pendiente para que la máquina bajara sola. "También fuimos a estrenos de cine juntos, pero cada uno con una acompañante mujer", agrega. ¿La razón? "Nadie en su sano juicio iba a salir del clóset. Era un suicidio profesional Todos fingíamos ser heterosexuales. Una vez que nos conocimos a Paul Newman y su esposa (Joanne Woodward), en un estreno, él me miró y sonrió. Acababa de leer en su rostro - que tal vez él- sabía que Rock y yo, estábamos juntos. Como que nos reímos de ello", relata.

La relación terminó en 1965. "Una de las razones de fin, era porque de alguna manera yo quería una figura paterna y él no era lo suficientemente fuerte", explica Garlington. "Rock no era una verdadera personalidad fuerte. Era un gigante amable".

El contacto entre ambos se perdió gradualmente luego que el actor revelara que tenía sida en 1985, siendo la primera celebridad conocida en sucumbir a la enfermedad en medio de un clima de miedo y de histeria que rodeaba a la "epidemia". "Me sorprendió", dice Garlington al saber noticia. "El SIDA mató a todo el mundo en estos días. Llamé a las personas que cuidaban de él, pero me dijeron que estaba tan enfermo que no sabría quién era yo y que lo mejor era que lo recordara cómo había sido antes". Garlington dice que al leer en la biografía de Hudson, publicado después de su muerte, en qué el actor le había llamado su "amor verdadero”, simplemente "rompí a llorar".

At the height of his fame in the early '60s, few people were closer to Rock Hudson than Lee Garlington, who dated the actor from 1962 to 1965.


"He was a sweetheart," says Garlington, 77, a retired stockbroker. "I adored him."


Garlington was a young film extra when he first met Hudson in 1962.


"He was the biggest movie star in the world, and the rumors were that he was gay," he says. "So I thought, 'Let me get an eye on him.' I stood outside his cottage on the Universal lot, pretending to read Variety, which was probably upside down at the time. He walked out and down the street. He looked back once. That was it."


A year later, after Garlington had broken up with his boyfriend, he got a call from one of Hudson's friends, asking if he'd like to meet the actor. "I think he had me checked out," he says.


"I was scared to death," Garlington says of their first meeting at Hudson's mansion on Beverly Crest Drive in Beverly Hills. "Of course, he was 6-foot-4, a monster. He offered me a beer, but nothing happened. Literally. I was too scared. He said, 'Well, let's get together,' and we did."


"I'd come over after work, spend the night and leave the next morning," Garlington says. "I'd sneak out at 6 a.m. in my Chevy Nova and coast down the street without turning on the engine so the neighbors wouldn't hear. We thought we were being so clever."

The two went to move premieres together, but each brought a female date.


"Nobody in their right mind came out," Garlington says. "It was career suicide. We all pretended to be straight. Once we met Paul Newman and his wife [Joanne Woodward] at a premiere. He looked at me and smiled. I just read in his face – that maybe he knew Rock and I were together. We kind of laughed about it."


Hudson never had to ask him to keep their relationship a secret. "He assumed I would and I did," Garlington says. "He wasn't paranoid."


"Rock had no pretense," he says. "He was always casual. He liked to wear chinos and moccasins around the house and hang around and watch television. We'd go on road trips and sometimes he wouldn’t tell the studio where he was going."


"Rock was always himself," he adds. "He would plant a kiss on a leading lady and I would say, 'Geez, he does that to me the same way.' That was always a giggle on my part."


One of his favorite memories?


"I remember we were getting ready to go somewhere and he said, 'Let me show you how to shave properly," Garlington says. "He showed me how to take the razor and go down your face at an angle so it cuts better."

The two broke up in 1965.


"One of the reasons we went our own way was because in a way I wanted a father figure and he was not strong enough," he says. "Rock wasn't a real strong personality. He was a gentle giant."


They gradually lost contact by the time the screen icon revealed he had AIDS in 1985, the first well-known celebrity to succumb to the disease amid a mounting climate of fear and hysteria surrounding the epidemic.


"I was shocked," Garlington says of the news. "AIDS killed everybody in those days. I called up the people taking care of him, but they said he was so sick that he wouldn't know who I was and it was best to remember him how he had been before."


Garlington read in Hudson's biography, published after his death, that the actor had called him his "true love."


"I broke down and cried," he recalls. "I just lost it. He said his mother and I were the only people he ever loved. I had no idea I meant that much to him."


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