In 1927 Roger C. Peterson obtained the position of custodian in the Cathedral Mausoleum, where silent star Rudolph Valentino lay buried. he'soon realized he was witnessing something never seen before in Hollywood, and began to keep a diary of the endless parade of characters that found their way to the crypt of Valentino. The first two years after Valentino?s burial, 100,000 people had made a pilgrimage to his grave. Many confided in Peterson that Valentino had appeared to them in a dream, feeling he compelled them to visit his crypt. Some women were with child, claiming it to be Valentino?s 18 months after his death. Everyone had a story. Peterson parlayed his diary into a book called Valentino The Unforgotten which was published in 1938. After the first shI'ment of books was sent out, the warehouse caught on fire and all remaining copies were destroyed. It was never republished, and until now remained one of the most difficult books on Valentino to obtain. Valentino The Unforgotten is a historically significant first-hand account of the earliest days of the cult-like Valentino followers and the Lady In Black. it's holds a truly unique place in Hollywood history in that it is the only book ever written about visitors to the grave of a Hollywood star. Tracy Ryan Terhune author of Valentino Forever - The History of the Valentino Memorial Service, has brought this rare book back into print. He added information to explain how Peterson came to get his position at the Cemetery, what transpired behind the'scenes while he was there and what became of him after he left in 1940. Filled with rare photos not only of Valentino, but also beautiful vintage photographs of Hollywood Memorial Park Cemetery as it looked when Roger Peterson worked here. Now 70 years after its original release, Valentino The Unforgotten returns as a joint tribute to Valentino, Peterson, and the numerous fans throughout the generations that keep Valentino truly the Unforgotten.
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April 18, 2007
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