Natalie Wood's Daughter Remembers Late Star On 80th Birthday: She Had 'So Much to Live For'
Natalie Wood‘s daughter Natasha Gregson Wagner is celebrating her late mom’s 80th birthday by giving fans a touching look into the star’s last birthday.
Wood, who would’ve turned 80 on Friday, loved birthdays, according to her eldest daughter Natasha, the daughter of Wood and British producer Richard Gregson. The star celebrated what would be her last birthday on July 20 1981, her last before she died that November at age 43 in a tragic boat accident off of Catalina Island.
In an exclusive picture from that night, Natasha, then 11, stands next to her sister Courtney Wagner, then 7, as Wood holds her cake and makes a funny face at the camera.
“My mother very much understood and appreciated the significance of birthdays—I can’t believe this year she would be turning 80 years old,” Natasha tells PEOPLE. “The other day, I asked my Daddy [Robert] Wagner how he thought she would have felt turning 80 years old. He said that he thinks she would have loved it. She would have loved being a grandma to Clover and watching us all grow up. She wanted to direct and produce a one day write a book. She had a lot of plans and so much to live for.”
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Natasha says that Wood didn’t like to make a big fuss for her birthdays, but would go all out for her loved ones.
“I remember that my mom loved all celebrations, big and small,” Natasha says. “Usually her birthday parties were more intimate affairs at our house with close family and friends, but when it came to others, she loved to throw big birthday parties for them—she threw my dad a huge surprise 50th birthday.”
Almost 27 years after Wood’s death, Natasha is one again honoring her mom with a new fragrance, La Rose. “My goal is to keep her memory alive,” she says.
“La Rose is a tribute to the beautiful garden roses that grew in our backyard during the summertime,” Natasha adds. “She would pick up the rose blossoms and put them in beautiful ceramic or silver vases throughout our house, so that my sister and I were always surrounded by the scent. The fragrance is a very natural smelling rose. We added heliotrope which is delicate and a favorite flower of butterflies.”