Esther Williams

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    Jun 06, 2013 5:54 PM GMT
    http://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Technicolor-star-Esther-Williams-dies-at-age-91-4583454.php#next

    A beautiful woman who lived a healthy, happy life. May she R.I.P.
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    Jun 07, 2013 2:22 AM GMT
    Years ago I read her autobiography where she revealed herself to be a major size queen, rhapsodizing over the endowments of every guy she dated, became engaged to (macho cross-dresser movie star Jeff Chandler who had a secret closet packed with better women's couture than she), married (Fernando Lamas, who'd drive without pants to Hollywood parties and events so his tight perfectly creased trousers which he had her iron wouldn't wrinkle before his entrances) or was even pursued by (Johnny Weissmuller with whom she toured in swim calvacades between his "Tarzan" flicks, who had "beautiful equipment").

    Even to simply "swim pretty" by keeping one's face, head and even shoulders above the water required great skill, so I also came away with incredible respect for her as an athlete. Expected to perform Olympic-caliber feats in one take, I remember most the story she told of almost drowning with a broken neck when, in mid high dive, she realized that the heavy gold-painted metal crown she was wearing might kill her upon impact. Incredibly, she was left alone upon hitting the water and nearly died because as soon as the director yelled "Cut!" everyone on set broke for lunch except a lagging one who saved her. You can see the sequence of that dive that almost killed her from 3:40-4:10 sec on this clip of one of her most famous bits:



    On a funnier note, in this clip Carol Burnett spoofs Esther Williams: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3FpY4aC5l0c
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    Jun 07, 2013 3:51 AM GMT
    I didn't realize synchronize swimming became an official Olympic sport in 1984 because of her. Interesting!