|A Right Royal Conundrum.|
Photograph (c) Marko Todorović, Tanjug/Tanja Valič, Wikipedia/White House Press Office
Over the past week, Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia (b.1936) and her youngest daughter Christina Oxenberg have been going back and forth through Balkan media outlets over a rather personal issue: who was Christina's *real* father? Christina has stated that when she was a teenager, her mother Elizabeth told Christina that Christina's biological dad was actually John Fitzgerald Kennedy (1917 - 1963), the 35th President of the United States of America. Elizabeth has stated that she never told her daughter any such thing. Christina insists that her mum did, indeed! So, let us look at the facts...
|Mr. Howard Oxenberg in 1960.|
|The Oxenberg/Karageorgevich marriage license: riddled with errors.|
|Baby Oxenberg/Karageorgevich # 1 arrives in September 1961.|
This article appeared in The Kansas City Times of Kansas City, Missouri, on 23 September 1961.
Early in the following year, 1962, the following blurbs started appearing in the American press:
|The Oxenbergs and the Kennedys hanging out in Palm Beach in early 1962.|
This article appeared in the Daily Press of Newport News, Virginia, on 18 February 1962.
|The Oxenbergs dance the night away at White House dinner with Jackie and JFK.|
This article appeared in the Pittsburgh Press of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on 18 February 1962.
|Baby Oxenberg/Karageorgevich # 2 is on the way!|
This article appeared in The Salt Lake Tribune of Salt Lake City, Utah, on 29 May 1962.
|Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia arrives back in N.Y.C. from Milan to prepare (again) for impending motherhood.|
|Howard and Elizabeth Oxenberg|
|Christina Oxenberg is born.|
This article appeared in The Philadelphia Inquirer of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 9 January 1963.
|Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia with daughters Catherine and Christina.|
|Marriage on the rocks: Howard Oxenberg and Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia divorce.|
This article appeared in The Philadelphia Inquirer of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 29 May 1966.
|Elizabeth Balfour (née Yugoslavia; formerly Oxenberg) with daughters Catherine and Christina in 1969.|
By 1966, the Oxenberg/Yugoslavia marriage had run its course. Over the years, gossip had it that the couple was frequently on the verge of divorce. Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia and Mr. Howard Oxenberg went their separate ways: she moved to Chelsea with her daughters, and he remained in New York. Both Elizabeth and Howard remarried and divorced...several times.
Now, we will fast forward to the present day. Christina Oxenberg is an author who lives in the United States. She has written several books: Taxi (1986), the novel Royal Blue (1998; republished in 2014), a compilation of short stories entitled When In Doubt...Double The Dosage (2014; after its publication, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. remarked: "A laugh on every page, Christina Oxenberg is one of the most lethal wits of the western world."), Princess Margaret's Coat (2017), and a history of her royal Serbian relations titled Dynasty: A True Story (2018). Her mother Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia resides in Belgrade; the princess was able to get the Serbian government to retain to her the ownership of a small villa that belonged to her mother Princess Olga. The princess has worked successfully to rehabilitate the reputation and legal status in Serbia of her father Prince Regent Paul, who had been declared an enemy of the state during the long Communist rule in the country. Both women are accomplished in their own right.
The crux of the issue between the two now is the issue of Christina's paternity. Last year, Christina wrote that Princess Elizabeth had told her daughter that Christina's actual father was U.S. President John F. Kennedy...not Howard Oxenberg, to whom Elizabeth was married at the time. Last week, Princess Elizabeth gave a statement that was picked up by several Balkan news organisations saying that her daughter is a liar and that she [Elizabeth] never told her daughter that J.F.K. was her biological dad. In response, via a statement given to other news organisations, Christina responded to her mother's statement by affirming that her mum did, indeed, tell her that John F. Kennedy was her biological father. Obviously, mother and daughter are not on speaking terms...unless you count communicating with one another through interviews in the press. Further, the final answer to this question of paternity can only be definitively answered by a DNA test. In the meantime, if one wonders whether Christina Oxenberg is the daughter of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, it will depend on how one looks at it. If you ask Christina, she will tell you that she is J.F.K.'s daughter because her mother told her so. Yet, if you ask Elizabeth, she will tell you that she never said anything of the sort. Regardless, one thing is a fact: Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia did meet President John Kennedy several times in the early months of 1962.
Princess Elizabeth's daughter exclusively for Telegraf: My mom told me I was Kennedy's daughter
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