11 February 2014

Shirley Temple - R.I.P. (And Black History To Boot)

Readers may have heard that Shirley Temple Black died in her California home last night, surrounded by family. Curly-Top was staple fare for Saturday reruns when I was growing up in the 1960's and '70's. WTTG, Channel 5 out of Washington ran many of her old films on weekends and late nights. She was a classic and one of a kind. Fox News had this to say about her:
Shirley Temple Black, who as a dimpled, ringlet-haired moppet starred in a series of winsome films that lifted the spirits of millions during the hard days of the Depression, then retired from the screen at 22 and eventually went on to a diplomatic career, died surrounded by family at her home in Woodside, Calif. She was 85. Temple was the most famous child star of her time and arguably of all time, beginning her film career at age three and becoming the symbol of upbeat family entertainment during an era when many had little to smile about.
My own 4 daughters also grew up watching her films, as do my granddaughters today. I too love many of her films, one of my favorites being The Little Colonel. Rest in peace Curly Top.

I love this scene with Richmond Virginia's own Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. A true classic:

Bill Robinson was a legend in his own right and was known for his generosity. 
Despite earning millions during his lifetime, Robinson died poor in 1949, at the age of 71. Much of his wealth went to charities in Harlem and beyond before his death. Robinson's funeral, arranged by longtime friend and television host Ed Sullivan, was held at the 369th Infantry Regiment Armory and attended by thousands, including many stars from the entertainment industry. A eulogy by Adam Clayton Powell Sr. (father of Congressman Adam Clayton Powell Jr.) was broadcast over the radio. Robinson was buried in the Cemetery of the Evergreens in Brooklyn, New York. 
He even has a statue in Richmond.

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