Early Boomer Sex Siren: Who Am I?

Posted on May 4th, 2017 in 1950s,1960s,Celebrities,Pop Culture,Sexual Revolution by Terry Hamburg

 
 
I was never a baby boomer household name, but Madonna, Rihanna, and the Pussycat Dolls were all imitating me.

I was one of the earliest Playboy Playmates. Hugh Hefner called me “an iconic figure in pop culture.” Not bad for a little Nashville country girl who graduated college to be a grade school teacher.

Like everyone, I really wanted to be an actress but ended up where I started—a model for “risque” pictures. At first, at so-called “camera clubs.” I was uninhibited and charismatic. Soon, I was splashed all over men’s magazines. No Playboy, yet. You couldn’t pick up Wink, Titter, or Eyeful without getting an eyeful of me. I was leading a sexual revolution before there was one.


 

Short movies were my speciality – “stag” films – for a select clientele, mainly by mail order. This was still the old days. The themes were wild – including bondage – without full nudity or explicit sexual content.

I appeared in a few Hollywood few movies but my claim to fame was as a pin-up model. Move over Betty Grable. I was “Miss Pinup Girl of the World” in 1955.


 

Eventually, I became a born-again Christian before it was a celebrity fad, and changed my life. I settled back in Nashville and worked full time for Billy Graham.

My personal life didn’t go as well. I was married and divorced a few times and finally had a nervous breakdown, which led to a revolving door “institutional” existence.

Robin Leach interviewed me by phone on his Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. My segment should have been called Lifestyles of the Broke and Forgotten. Well, I was half-right. There had been a revival of my popularity recently. I had no idea. I tried to cash in on it and got a little. I allowed an official biography.

In my only television interview, I had my face and most of my body blacked out. I wanted my fans to remember me as I was.

I died recently at 85. That’s a lot of years for a crazy, bad girl.

 
 

Answer at end of post

 
 

This Week In Baby Boomer History

 
 

1942:  The United States begins food rationing for World War II.

1954:  British runner Roger Bannister breaks the four minute mile.

1960:  President Eisenhower signs the Civil Rights Act.

1961:  Alan Shepard becomes the first American in space.

1961:  13 civil rights activists, dubbed Freedom Riders, begin a bus trip through the South.

1970:  Ohio National Guardsmen open fire on student protesters at Kent State University, killing four and wounding nine others.

1974:  The House Judiciary Committee begins formal hearings on the Nixon impeachment.

 
 
 
 

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