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Many entertainers and future celebrities answered their country's call and donned US Navy and Coast Guard blues, serving at sea during the war.
Lieutenant Commander Quinton McHale, The Joker, Jed Clampett. What do these TV names possibly have in common? Long before commanding a Patrol Torpedo boat, wreaking havoc in Gotham City, and discovering “black gold,” Ernest Borgnine, Cesar Romero, and Buddy Ebsen all served in either the US Navy or Coast Guard during World War II.
Many famous actors went to war, and most are familiar with the service of men like Jimmy Stewart, Clark Gable, and Henry Fonda. Those we know as celebrities now joined at different points in their careers. Paul Newman joined the navy in 1943, just out of high school. Gene Kelly took a leave of absence from his contract with MGM to join the navy in 1944. Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. had a long list of successful film credits to his name when seeing war clouds on the horizon in April 1941, he was commissioned into the US Naval Reserve. The list is long of those who served in the sea going forces, so here are a few highlights.
https://www.nationalww2museum.org/war/a ... XoDf2yEfCk
https://www.nationalww2museum.org/war/p ... id-podcast
Service on Celluloid is a captivating podcast that takes a deep look at depictions of World War II on film over the last 70-plus years. In-house experts at The National WWII Museum, along with special guests, hold lively debates on the historical merits of treasured classics and smaller films alike. Films highlighted in this series include Fury, Saving Private Ryan, Schindler’s List, The Great Escape, and Twelve O’Clock High. This entertaining series examines Hollywood's portrayals—good and bad—of the 20th century’s most dramatic event. Listen and subscribe!
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