Petter Lindstrom, a neurosurgeon who was abandoned by his movie star wife Ingrid Bergman in a high-profile affair during the late 1940s, died May 24 in his Sonoma, Calif., home. He was 93.
Lindstrom, who was married to Bergman for 10 years, was deserted by the actress for Italian director Roberto Rossellini. Bergman left Lindstrom and their daughter, Pia (who later became a TV entertainment correspondent), to live in Italy with Rossellini and to have his illegitimate son, Roberto.
The love triangle shocked Bergman fans who were used to seeing the screen idol playing nuns and martyrs. The U.S. Senate even denounced the affair from the floor.
Bergman began her affair with Rossellini in 1948 and divorced Lindstrom in 1950 to marry Rossellini.
Lindstrom was a dentist and eight years older than Bergman when they married in Stockholm. He joined Bergman in Beverly Hills when her career prompted the move. Lindstrom also switched from dentistry to brain surgery and became a U.S. citizen.
He remained bitter about Bergman’s abandonment and helped biographer Laurence Leamer portray her as a promiscuous woman in the 1986 book “As Time Goes By — The Life of Ingrid Bergman.”
Lindstrom, a native of Stode, Sweden, later studied and taught neurosurgery at the U of California, Los Angeles. He held a practice in San Francisco from 1964 until 1978 before relocating to San Diego.
He is survived by his wife, Dr. Agnes Ronavec; daughter, Pia and four children with Ronavec and eight grandchildren.