Skip to comments.The true story behind the iconic V-J Day sailor and 'nurse' smooch
Posted on 06/17/2012 7:27:17 AM PDT by lowbridge
As first dates go, Rita Petry thought this one was pretty great: a beautiful summer afternoon in the city, a matinee at Radio City Music Hall, drinks after, followed by a passionate, soon-to-be-iconic kiss.
Well, maybe not the kiss: Her handsome young suitor, it turns out, planted that on another woman.
Such is the incredible story behind one of the most romantic and enduring photos of the 20th century and one of our most compelling mysteries.
Since Aug. 14, 1945, the identities of the smooching sailor and the nurse in Alfred Eisenstaedts Times Square V-J Day photograph have never been determined until the publication, last week, of the book The Kissing Sailor: The Mystery Behind the Photo that Ended World War II.
Theres another person in the frame, one nobody even knew to look for, who makes the image that much more poignant: Rita Petry, the future wife of that sailor, George Mendonsa.
I really liked him, but I didnt know I was the future wife, Rita tells The Post. I guess I thought he looked nice or something.
(Excerpt) Read more at nypost.com ...
Ping for later!
The statue entitled “The Kiss” stands in the park with the Air Craft Carrier Midway in San Diego.
Today that sailor would have been arrested for sexual harassment, battery, civil rights violations, and the dental hygienist (nurse in the photo) would have been represented by Gloria Alred.
That sailor and his girl friend have now been married for 66 years. Life is good. Great job you guys.
As Paul Harvey used to say, “And now you know the rest of the story. Good day!”
Yes, this is interesting, but I would like to know more about this research. This is especially since a friend is one who told us this story too, and was quietly positive that he was the one who was doing the kissing. He said a lot of things that made it seem very real, and claimed it to his dying day.
I am Spartacus.
The ear lobes are different on the guy. The one kissing has no lobes and the guy in the pic to the left has noticeable lobes hanging down.
She was on a desalinization ship and had the opportunity to take her first good long hot shower in a long time, when all of a sudden she heard a terrible commotion. She was afraid the ship was being attacked. She grabbed her robe and stepped out on deck to see what was going on. First one soldier grabbed her and kissed her, and then another, and another. She said that by the time all of the kissing stopped she couldn't find her robe anywhere.
The other two old army nurses didn't bat an eye. One of them asked calmly, “Did you ever get your robe back?” She replied, “No.” The third nurse said, “Oh that is too bad! Those were really good robes.”
My wife who is normally quite talkative... didn't know what to say.
It was VE Day. The war in Europe was over.
I am sorry it was sailors from the ship not soldiers kissing her on VE Day.
There are three appendages on the human body which never stop growing, (no, that is not one of them) the nose and ears. And some can can change radically different in the later years.
Totally lost interest after reading that the sailor sued the magazine. Another jurisprudential absurdity!!!
What a great story!
The guy would be arrested as some sort of predator today.
Yes I know but the pic of the Navy guy on the left has ear lobes. I guess they can grow within weeks or go away! LOL