|What a beauty. Click to enlarge|
I saw Dendridge was born in Okinawa in 1975 and I thought, huh, I’ll bet she’s the product of an American military person and a local. Sure enough. “Her mother was a Korean woman who lived in Okinawa at the time, while her father was an African-American airman from Memphis, Tennessee.”
So in 1975 while I was making my way across Asia in an old jalopy with three friends, Merle was busy being born 2,000 miles east.
She is surely lovely and a great talent. Sings, dances and acts, stage and screen.
The only other “Merle” comes immediately to mind is Merle Haggard, and he’s a man (and dead). I’m guessing Daddy Dandridge liked Haggard’s country music, being Tennessee born ‘n all.
ADDED: But then there’s Merle Oberon…
And, btw, am I being sexist to assume it was the father who chose the name and not the Korean mother? I’d say I’m just playing the odds. I’m guessing very few “Merles” in Japan or Korea. Then again, perhaps the mother was a fan of American country music or Indian-American actresses. I hope they are still alive. And if so they must be very proud of their daughter.
ADDED: It’s worth checking out Merle Oberon’s backstory. Born in India, she claimed, for most of her life and for complex reasons, to have been born inTasmania, Australia