Dorothy Ellen Armstrong (nee Partington)


Dorothy Armstrong (nee Partington) also known as “Dottie Partington” died at the age of 88 in Long Beach, California on May 5, 2011. Dorothy was born and raised in Staten Island, New York.  She was the only daughter of Ralph Edwin Partington, a New York police office, and Dorothy Ellen Partington, a homemaker.  Following her extensive modeling work in New York, Dorothy was cast as the character Miss Lace in Milton Caniff’s Male Call cartoon series.  Aimed primarily at servicemen during WW II, Male Call was published in over 3,000 camp newspapers around the world.  As Miss Lace, Dorothy would frequently visit wounded veterans at military hospitals and joined several USO tours to boost and support the morale of US servicemen.  She was very proud of her contributions to the morale and support of servicemen during WW II as part of the US war effort.

Following high school graduation, Dorothy was discovered and subsequently hired as a model for the Harry Conover Agency in New York, as a “Conover Cover Girl” Dorothy appeared in the leading magazines of the day, in addition to advertisements and signboards.  In the early 1940’s Dorothy was cast and performed in several Broadway stage plays.  During World War II, Dorothy was the model and inspiration for Miss Lace in  Milton Caniff’s Male Call cartoon series that was distributed to over 3,000 military bases around the world from 1941-1946. Later, she appeared in television shows such as “Tales of Wells Fargo,” and “Lawman” and the movie, Ice Palace.

Dorothy was married twice.  Her first marriage was to Charles Fredrick, a highly decorated war veteran.  They divorced in 1951.  Her second marriage was to George B. Armstrong.  They were married from 1953 until 1966.  Shortly after her marriage to George Armstrong, the couple moved to Los Angeles, California in 1956 where they first lived in Baldwin Hills.  After the birth of their son William (Bill) Armstrong, the family moved to Burbank, California.  Dorothy’s parents also moved to Burbank to be near their daughter and new grandson.  After moving to Burbank, California, Dorothy worked at Warner Brothers and NBC as a cast member on television westerns.  Following her television work she worked as a research assistant to screenwriter Harry Kleiner for five years where she assisted him in the research and writing of screenplays including the Bullit and Fantastic Voyage movies. 

After her divorce she needed to work full time to help support her family.  Dorothy attended adult education classes in the evening to acquire office skills and secured employment with the City of Burbank in the Public Works Department where she worked for over 20 years.  

 As a single mother, she focused on the raising of her son Bill, and provided a rich nurturing environment for his growth and educational development. The value she placed on education and cultural enrichment was reflected in a home filled with books, magazines, and music. Her warm, conversant style ensured that she had many friends and loved to entertain guests at home and around the backyard pool. Dorothy had a smile that could light up a room.  She had a quick wit and laughed easily.  Her sense of humor, and warm and open nature was a gift, and she shared these gifts with her many friends and family. 

Dorothy greatly loved nature, the beach, and the outdoors and would make frequent forays to the beaches and parks of Southern California.  She also maintained a small mobile home located on the beach south of Ensenada, Mexico that she frequently visited. Reflecting her love of nature, she was also a longtime member of the Sierra Club.  Dorothy loved to watch Animal Planet on television, and was an avid reader and subscriber to National Geographic, Smithsonian, and Sierra magazines. 

Following Bill’s graduation from college, she retired from her position with the City of Burbank Public Works department in 1990 after 22 years.  In all Dorothy was a Burbank resident for over forty years in the Rancho Equestrian area of the city. After retirement she lived in Pacific Palisades, CA until 1996, and later moved to Westminster, CA, then to Long Beach, CA where she resided the last eight years. She is survived by her son, William Bannon Armstrong; cousins, Cyrus Partington and Anne Partington; niece, Vicki Lanzilotta and nephew, Gregory Armstrong.

A memorial service for Dorothy Armstrong will be held Saturday, June 25th at Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills located at: 6300 Forest Lawn Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90068.  1-800-204-3131. Directions:

Reference:  Dorothy Armstrong Memorial Service

From the 134 Freeway in Los Angeles either east or west bound take the Forest Lawn Drive exit to Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills.


The memorial service will start at 2:30 PM at the Old North Church, with a reception at 3:45 PM at the Recital Hall (Hall of Liberty), also at Forest Lawn, Hollywood Hills

Note:  Traffic can be heavy in this area even on a weekend, please allow enough time to arrive for the 2:30 start time on Saturday, June 25th.


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