Willella Johnson (1939 - 2004)



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Willella Johnson Biography & Family History

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Saint Louis, Saint Louis City County, Missouri

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1939 - In the year that Willella Johnson was born, in May, Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the first full-length animated film, reached a total international gross of $6.5 million which made it (to then) the most successful sound film of all time. First released in December 1937, it was originally dubbed "Disney's Folly" but the premiere received a standing ovation from the audience. At the 11th Academy Awards in February 1939, Walt Disney won an Academy Honorary Award - a full-size Oscar statuette and seven miniature ones - for Snow White.

1942 - This person was just 3 years old when on November 28th at 10:15p, a nightclub in Boston, the Cocoanut Grove, caught fire. The origins of the fire are unknown but it killed 492 people - the deadliest nightclub fire in U.S. history. Hundreds more were injured. The disaster was so shocking that it replaced World War II in the headlines and lead to reforms in safety standards and codes.

1951 - When this person was merely 12 years old, on February 27th, the 22nd Amendment to the US Constitution (which limited the number of terms a president may serve to two) was ratified by 36 states, making it a part of the U.S. Constitution. The Amendment was both a reaction to the 4 term Roosevelt presidency and also the recognition of a long-standing tradition in American politics.

1957 - When this person was 18 years old, on September 24th, the "Little Rock Nine" (nine African-American students) entered Little Rock High School. Arkansas Gov. Orval Faubus had previously prevented the students from entering the school at the beginning of the term with the Arkansas National Guard - they blocked the door. President Eisenhower ordered federal troops - the 101st Airborne Division of the United States Army - to guard the students and allow them entry.

1989 - At the age of 50 years old, Willella was alive when on November 9th, the Berlin Wall fell. The Wall was built by the East Germans to keep East Berliners from escaping into West Berlin, separating families and friends. When the head of the East German Communist Party announced that day that East Berliners could cross whenever they pleased, happy crowds surged across the border. People brought tools and took parts of the hated wall.

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Willella Johnson passed away on January 3, 2004 at 64 years old. No cause of death has been entered. Willella was born on April 17, 1939. We have no information about Willella's family. We know that Willella Johnson had been residing in Saint Louis, Saint Louis City County, Missouri.


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