This marked the beginning of her “Jackie O.” period, where—no longer compelled to wear mainly American designers—she made oversized François Pinton sunglasses, Gucci bags, the Cartier tank watch and Joy by Jean Patou into major status symbols.
The Onassises had all the money in the world, but Ari is rumored to have taken up with Maria Callas again one month into their marriage. Still, they outwardly enjoyed the jet-set lifestyle—sunbathing on their yacht, dropping in at the hottest nightclubs—until 1973, when Ari’s 24-year-old son, Alexander Onassis, was killed in a plane crash. Then his first wife and mother of his children, Tina, died of a barbiturate overdose in October 1974. Onassis was consumed by depression and his health started to decline; he died of respiratory disease in 1975.
There were reports that Onassis had started divorce proceedings before he died, and that he had hired a private investigator to dig up dirt on his wife, but his daughter Christina formally denied it. She’s said to have settled on a multimillion-dollar payout for her former stepmother from her father’s estate, provided Jackie not pursue any further legal action.
Christina Onassis, who married and divorced four times and was left in charge of the Onassis Group when her father passed away, died suddenly of a heart attack at the age of 37 in 1988.