Danville Woman Writes Book About Entertaining Troops as a USO Dancer In The 40's
Danville, VA - A Danville woman with an extraordinary past is telling the story of how she followed her dreams across the world.
In the 1940's, Doris Lee Pritchett packed her bags and headed North to pursue a lifelong passion for dance.
"I went to New York and auditioned for everything on Broadway until I got the USO job, " Pritchett said.In 1946, Doris Lee Pritchett traveled with the United Service Organizations to perform for troops stationed overseas during peacetime. In just 6 months, she made her way through Guam, Tokyo, and Okinawa, to name a few.And she has fond memories of being on the same ticket with big names like Bob Hope.
"What they had was the Hollywood people, the stars, then they had the people who were young in their careers, and they were yelling for us and clapping for us just as much, " Pritchett said, but her family at home never left her mind."My mother back home was very brave. She wanted me to have what I had wanted but she was brave for letting me go, " Pritchett said,Her new book, Life On A Magic Carpet, is made up of all the letters and postcards she sent to her mother - letters she kept all this time.
"The letters to mother said, 'We had rehearsal today, and my shoulders hurt from the ankles up'," she said.Though her days in the bright lights have passed, she says she's content knowing that she lived her dream.
"When I came back I said, 'Now I've got the world by the tail'. Once You've heard the applause, life is okay after that, " said Pritchett.
After returning home, Pritchett worked as a dance teacher and extension agent for many years.
She will hold a book signing this Saturday from 2 to 4 at the Danville Museum, and another on August 2nd at Gingerbread House on Memorial Drive.
Books are sold at the following locations: Danville Museum, Midtown Market, Gingerbread House, Attic Hound, and Karen's Hallmark.