Lucille Ball: Before and After "I Love Lucy".
Lucille Ball, known to all as Lucy, had a wide range of experience and talent that made her a big success and one of the most recognized and loved entertainers in the world (American Masters).
Born to Henry Durell and Desiree (DeDe) Ball on August 6,1911 in Jamestown, New York, was Lucille Desiree Ball. She was born in her grandmother's apartment although her parents were living in Butte, Montana just before her birth (Brady 7). When Lucy's mother was able to travel, they returned to Montana to be with her father. For almost four years she was the only child (Ball & Hoffman 3).
Lucy's parents showered her with affection. She was the center of attention and "life was a lark." Her mother dressed her in ribbons and bows, but she rebelled because she was never the prissy, doll type. Her father roughhoused with her as if she were a boy (Ball & Hoffman 3).
By the time Lucy turned three years old, her mother was tired of the forty below Montana winters and homesick for the gentle green hills of home, so the family decided to move to Wyandotte, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit. Here, her father became a foreman of a telephone line crew (Ball & Hoffman 4).
The following January her father fell ill. Her mother was five months pregnant at this time. To keep Lucy under control DeDe tied her to a dog leash, which was attached to the clothesline in the backyard. Every time someone would pass by on the sidewalk, Lucy would beg to be released. She must have been pretty convincing because she was set free most of the time. Then DeDe would have to search the neighborhood for her. Henry's condition never improved and eventually turned into typhoid fever. .
He died shortly after. He was twenty-eight, DeDe was twenty-three, and Lucy was not yet four years old (Brady 7). .
Lucy and her mother returned to Jamestown to hold a funeral for her father. Lucy had shown little emotion until the funeral service in which she screamed a bloodcurdling scream and did not stop screaming until DeDe carried her away.