November 30, 2011
Lucy Gets Married Three Times
Today is the Anniversary of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. They married for the first time on November 30, 1940 at the Byram River Beagle Club in Greenwich, Connecticut. They met in 1940 while filming the Rodgers and Hart stage hit Too Many Girls. At first, Arnaz was not fond of Lucy. When they met again later that day, the two connected immediately and eloped the same year. She was a 28-year-old contract player with a string of forgettable films, he, at 23, a dashing, Cuban-horn nightclub bandleader. They married six months later. While she tended a soaring Hollywood career, he toured the country with his rumba band.
They filed for a divorce in 1944 but shortly after Ball obtained an interlocutory decree of divorce, she reconciled with Arnaz.
They were finally divorced on May 4, 1960, just two months after filming the final episode of The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour.
Until his death in 1986, however, Arnaz and Ball remained friends and often spoke very fondly of each other. It was said that Desi was Lucy's one true love.
After her divorce from Desi, Lucy married Gary Morton on November 19, 1961 and was with him until her death. On April 26, 1989, after recovering from surgery to correct cardiopulmonary problems, Lucy died unexpectedly at Cedars-Sinai Hospital of a ruptured aorta.
Desi later married Edith Mack Hirsh on March 2, 1963, who died in 1985. After struggling with alcohol problems, Desi only returned briefly in 1982 in a starring role in "The Escape Artist". He later wrote an autobiography entitled "A Book." In 1986, Desi was diagnosed with lung cancer, and died on December 2, 1986 in the arms of his daughter, Lucie.
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