Power, Tyrone, born on 05-05-1914 in Cincinnati, Ohio, the only son to the stage and screen actor Tyrone Power Sr. and actress Patia Power, in an acting dynasty that began with his great-grandfather. Power Sr. was a famous stage actor whose work took him away from often. Since Tyrone Jr.’s health was delicate, the family moved to California, where his sister Anne was born in 1915.
Tyrone Power Sr. and Patia Power appeared together on stage and in a film, The Planter. However, the couple eventually divorced. Patia returned to her family in Cincinnati where she went to work as a drama and voice coach. After graduating from high school in 1931, Power rejoined his father in California to take up acting.
Their time together was short. Tyrone Power Sr. died of a heart attack in December, 1931 on the set of the film The Miracle Man, leaving his son devastated, alone, and broke. Using his father’s name to open doors, Power did land a tiny role in Tom Brown of Culver. Discouraged, he left Hollywood for the New York stage.
Power’s luck finally changed when he was chosen by the great actress Katherina Cornell
who died died, age 81 of pneumonia on 09-06-1974 at The Barn in Tisbury, Massachusetts, to understudy Burges Meredith in the play Flowers of the Forest. Later he was cast as Benvolio in her tour of Romeo & Juliet, and Hollywood came knocking. He wisely took Cornell’s advice and instead gained more stage experience. After his appearance in Shaw’s St. Joan, Hollywood called again, and Power felt he was ready. He signed with Fox in 1936. Once his contract with Fox ended, Power sought better parts, appearing in several great movies.
In the early 1940’s, Tyrone Power’s movie career was interrupted by military service. In August 1942, he enlisted in the Marine Corps, starting out as a private, having refused his studio’s offer to get him an officer’s commission. Upon completion of boot camp training at San Diego, he was selected for Officer’s Candidate School at Quantico, where he was promoted to Second Lieutenant on 02-06-1943. Because he had already logged many solo hours as a pilot prior to enlisting in the Marine Corps, he was able to go though a short, intense flight training program at Corpus Christi, Texas, where he earned his wings and was promoted to First Lieutenant . Power served in the Pacific theatre, with the VMR-352, carrying supplies aboard a Curtiss R5C into the embattled Iwo Jima and carrying the wounded out, often under heavy fire.
When Tyrone left for military service, he and his wife were having marital troubles, but they committed themselves to working out their problems. When he returned from the war, he talked of how happy he was to see his wife waiting on the dock in Seattle for him. They took a second honeymoon to give him time to recover from his wartime experiences and to strengthen their marriage. In October of 1946 – just a few short months of his return from the war, she announced their separation, naming “incompatibility of careers” as the grounds. The years would drag on before they were finally divorced, in January 1949.
Power met his first wife, the French actress Annabella, born Suzanne Georgette Charpentier
, on the set of Suez (1938). As the “Brangelina” of the day, their 1939 marriage made the front page of The Los Angeles Times. But with Power’s service in World War II, Annabella’s inability to conceive, and his various flings, (including a dalliance Judy Garland, the couple finally divorced in 1949. Annabella died old age 89 on 18-09-1996 in Neuilly sur Mére in France.
Power and his second wife, starlet Linda Christian , met in Rome in 1947, and married there in 1949, as 10.000 people waited outside the church. Right away the couple said that they were eager to have children. Linda suffered three miscarriages before, happily, giving birth to daughter Romina, on 02-10-1951. A couple years later, on 13-09-1953, they welcomed daughter, Taryn. Despite the complete joy that the children brought to their lives, the marriage became increasingly unhappy, and the couple divorced in 1955. Linda died age 87 on 22-07-2011.
After a long affair with Swedish actress Mai Zetterling, who died age 68 on 17-03-1994 in London , on 07-05-1958, Tyrone Power married Deborah “Debby” Ann Montgomery Minardos , a dark-haired Southern beauty.The couple soon had the happy news that Debbie was going to have a baby. Tyrone Power hoped for a boy to carry on his name, though he adored his two little girls. He confessed to his friends that he was sure that, this time, he would have a boy. Deborah Minardos died of a stroke on 03-04-2006, age 74 in Los Angeles, California.
Death and burial ground of Power, Tyrone Edmund.
In September of 1958 Tyrone Power and his wife went to Madrid, Spain, so that he could begin filming the epic, Solomon and Sheba, to be directed by King Vidor. He had filmed about seventy-five percent of his scenes when, on 15-11-1958, he was stricken with a massive heart attack, as he was filming a dueling scene with his frequent co-star and friend, George Sanders. He died enroute to the hospital. Yul Brynner was brought in to take over the role of Solomon.
Tyrone Power was buried at Hollywood Cemetery, now known as Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Hollywood, California, at noon, on 21-11-1958, in a military service. (Tyrone Power had remained in the Marine reserves after his active duty was over. At the time of his death, he was a major. The memorial service was held at the Chapel of the Psalms, Hollywood Cemetery, with Chaplain Thomas M. Gibson, U.S.N.R. officiating. The active pallbearers were officers of the United States Marine Corps. One of the honorary pallbearers was Cesar Romero, Tyrone Power was laid to rest, by a small lake, in one of the most beautiful parts of the cemetery. His grave is marked by a unique tombstone, in the form of a marble bench. On 22-01-1959, Tyrone and Debbie Power’s son, Tyrone William Power IV, was born in Los Angeles. Ty’s greatest wish, to have a son to carry forth his name, was fulfilled . And, years later, his son would carry on the name when he and his wife had a baby boy – Tyrone Keenan Power.