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Lupe Velez (María Guadalupe Villalobos Vélez) – 1908 -1944

Lupe Velez has been quoted as having said: ‘the first time you buy a house you think how pretty it is and sign the cheque. Then you look in the basement and see if the house has termites, Its the same with men.’


Her instincts generally served her well. She marries the star of Tarzan movies Johnny Weissmuller in 1933 until 1938. Then things go wrong, She has a relationship with Harold Maresch, and is pregnant. Unable to face the shame of having a child out of wedlock. The cause of death is an overdose of seconal. Her suicide note reads:

To Harald: May God forgive you and forgive me, too; but I prefer to take my life away and our baby’s, before I bring him with shame, or killin’ him.

The question that remains unanswered is why she should have been so concerned about violating notions of decency. She was known for signs of mania and bipolar disorder. It is unlikely that she would have been unable to reconcile her disregard for convention by raising the child out of wedlock.

Lupe Velez has a star on Hollywood and Vine for her contribuitions to the American film industry.

Selected filmography:

The Gaucho, 1927. Wolf Song, 29. East is West 30, The Squaw Man 31,. Kongo 32, Hot Pepper. Paloooka 34, The Morals of Marcus (GB) 37. The Girl from Mexico, The Mexican Spitfire 39.

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