Dorothy Lamour died in her North Hollywood home of a heart ailment on Sept. 22, 1996, after a more than half century career on radio, television, films and live perormance. Had she lived, she would be celebrating her 100th birthday tomorrow (Dec. 10).
So we express our advance birthday wishes, of a kind, with our Monday Quiz, which asks the question — how much do you know about Dottie Lamour?
Ok, let’s find out. Here today are the answers to our Monday Quiz. To review the questions, just scroll down one blog. Here we go:
1) Answer: b) False. Lamour began her career as a singer, not a dancer. She sang with Herbie Kay’s big band, and even at age 21 married the guy (it lasted four years). As her early radio appearances testify, she was a solid professional, performing with the likes of Rudy Vallee.
2) Answer: d) Dorothy initiated the sarong in 1936’s The Jungle Princess. It and she looked great in combination, and Lamour quickly became a popular pinup.
3) Answer: a) Dorothy wore the sarong in six of her some 55 movies, although the image of her in the garment stayed with her for much of her career.
4) Answer: a) The Moon of Manakoora, which Dorothy warbled to great success in director John Ford’s 1937 adventure drama, The Hurricane. The song and the movie marked a Lamour career breakthrough.
5) Answer: c) Dorothy, Esther Williams, Debbie Reynolds and Doris Day all were married at various times to husbands who left them much poorer. In Lamour’s case it was her second husband, William Ross Howard III. He handled all the money, and through a number of investment misfires, lost most of it. After their lengthy marriage ended with his death, Lamour was forced to return to show biz to pay the bills. The result was a refueled second career half on tv and the stage.
6) Answer: b) False. Lamour was very friendly with Bob Hope, her Road To… costar, throughout her career. But she found Crosby shyer and less engaging, and never became close friends with Der Bingle.
7) Answer: d) At one time in the early Forties, Lamour and FBI boss J. Edgar Hoover were an item. That did not sit well with Hoover’s longtime companion, Clyde Tolson.
8) Answer: a) Joan Collins. Dorothy wangled a cameo appearance in the final Road To… picture (1962’s The Road To Hong Kong), but the younger British actress took the female lead.
9) Answer: a) Dorothy sold an estimated $21 million in Word War II bonds, an amazing figure now and certainly in the early Forties.
10) Answer: Mary Leta Dorothy Slaton, Miss New Orleans of 1931.