We don't feel that we can let today pass without noting that it is the 50th anniversary of the death of Errol Flynn.
When we were small we loved his classic swashbuckling films, especially The Sea Hawk (1940), Captain Blood (1935) and our favourite (and still one of our top ten films) The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938).
As we got older we started to learn more about his extraordinary life, sparked initially by David Niven's autobiographies The Moon's a Balloon and Bring on the Empty Horses.
Flynn liked alcohol and he liked women (the younger the better); in both cases to excess and how he lasted until 50 is a miracle. In the enjoyable, if controversial, recent biography of Flynn by David Bret, Errol Flynn: Gentleman Hellraiser there is a story of him going off for a cruise on his yacht with a handful of friends and them taking on board 110 cases of vodka to keep them going!
Flynn died in Vancouver, on 14th October 1959, where he was visiting to arrange sell his yacht Zaca (he was, as ever, beset by money problems) to millionaire George Caldough. Caldough was just taking him back to Vancouver airport when Flynn felt ill so he diverted to the home of his friend Dr Grant Gould at 1310 Burnaby Street. Flynn immediately started to party with Gould's guests but then retired to his bedroom feeling ill again. He had been accompanied on the trip by his young (16) mistress Beverly Aadland and when she checked on him she already found him unconscious and blue in the face. By the time the ambulance arrived it was too late. Agent Triple P walked past the spot when in Vancouver a week or so ago.
Beverly Aadland. Young
Beverly was 14 when she became Flynn's mistress but claimed she had been an early developer being 34-28-34 at the age of 12. That's alright then.
Whatever, we salute you Mr Flynn; the world would have been a duller place without you.