Joel Fluellen (pictured above) was a social arbiter, master chef, gossip, snob and fearless fighter for the rights of black performers and he was also dazzled by actress Dorothy Dandridge (top photo) whom he first saw in the lobby of the Dunbar Hotel. That day, she was wearing ballet shoes, and at first, he thought she was a ballerina. “Dorothy was the loveliest, the most delicate woman he had ever seen. Awestruck, Fluellen did everything conceivable to be near her. If her husband Harold was out of town, Fluelloen made it a point to get to the Nicholas' home to keep Dandridge company, to shop with her, to cook for her, sometimes to massage her and always to flatter her endlessly. Fluellen would know many famous people but none ever affected him as Dandridge did. He was obsessed with her and he never got over her death. Fluellen was part of the Black Hollywood scene for years and he appeared in “The Learning Tree.” At the time of his death in 1990, when, old and frail, he put a gun to his head and pulled the trigger. Source: “Bright Boulevards, Bright Dreams,” by Donald Bogel

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