The One and Only Lucille Ball

12 Jan

In middle school (7th or 8th grade) I had to do a biography on someone- didn’t matter who- so of course I picked the fabulous Ms. Ball. It was a long book; I forgot a good chunk of it. I’m not going to rewrite her bio. But I did want to shine a light on her life away from Lucy Ricardo.

Image result for lucille ball young

She was born Lucille Desiree Ball on Aug 6th 1911 in  (yes) Jamestown,NY. Her mother sent her off to the John Murray Anderson School for the Dramatic Arts as a way to split Ball up from her ne’er-do-well boyfriend! Ball turned that opportunity into a modelling career that was sidelined when she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis.

She eventually made the move to Hollywood to start her acting career, got bit parts and signed with MGM. She was “Queen of the B’s” for a while until she was cast as Liz Cooper in My Favorite Husband, which we alllll know became our favorite show ILL.

Ball met Desi in 1940 while working on a Broadway show Too Many Girls.  They’re first meeting was not love at first sight. Lucy was in costume, wearing raggamuffin clothes and had a black eye. It wasn’t until the next day that they started to click and they married on November 30th 1940. (As a gal that’s dated a couple guys younger than her- and always gets flack for it- I want to point out that Desi was 6 years younger than Lucy!)

It’s no secret that their marriage was a rocky one. Lucy first filed for divorce in 1944 but the couple reconciled. Their first child, Lucie Desiree Arnaz was borth July 17 1951. Only months before the first episode of ILL would air and thirty-six years to the day before yours truly was born. (July 17 is also the day Disneyland would open for the first time in 1955!)

Image result for lucille ball family

Second child, and widely anticipated-thanks to the show, Desiderio Alberto Arnaz IV was born on Jan 19th 1953. Just a couple months after the airing of the very last Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, the couple divorced on May 4th 1960. Lucy and Desi remained friends and worked together at their company Desilu productions until Desi resigned in 1962. Ball bought him out and became head of the studio and one of the most powerful women in Hollywood.

Ball remarried on November 19th 1961 to Gary Morton, to whom she was with until her death April 26th, 1989.

 

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