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Leonard R. Bluett


1919 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Leonard R. Bluett Obituary
January 21, 1919 - January 1, 2016 Lennie passed away peacefully in Los Angeles on New Year's Day just shy of his 97th birthday. He was a musician, entertainer, and Black rights trailblazer. He was born to Mae Henrietta Jones and Fred Bluett in his grandparents' house in the Jefferson Park area of LA. In his late teens he sang at parties at Humphrey Bogart's house, where his mother was a cook for 30 years. Lennie befriended Lauren Bacall among others. He was cast in the Hepburn/Tracy movie "State of the Union" and was a singer/dancer in movies with Lena Horne and Dorothy Dandridge, to name only a few. In "Gone with the Wind" Lennie questioned Clark Gable about the outdoor potties with discriminatory signs stating either COLORED or WHITE ONLY. The signs came down. During World War II Lennie entertained troops in Hawaii. For years he sang for a major cruise line, visiting numerous cities, including a favorite, Casablanca. In Los Angeles he spent mornings at a donut shop reading the paper and enthusiastically greeting everyone. Councilman Tom LaBonge called him the "Mayor of Los Feliz." At 90 he recorded CD's, entertained locally and auditioned for acting roles, landing a speaking part at 95 in an ad aired at the Super Bowl. Lennie was a member of AFM and SAG. He was featured in the LA Times, The Sentinel, People Magazine, and Jazz Times and has videos on YouTube. Lennie is survived by a daughter Nicole Bluett and a niece Michelle Bluett. Memorial service at First AME Church, 2270 S. Harvard Blvd 90018, Jan. 21 (Thurs.), 11:00 A.M.
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Jan. 13, 2016
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