Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas Biography, Early Life, Harolyn’s Sad Fate, and Interesting Facts


Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas

Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas is the first daughter of the Walk of Fame award-winning American actress Dorothy Dandridge. She is the only daughter she had with her ex-husband Harold Nicholas who was a celebrity dancer.

She was born on the 2nd of September 1943 and she was born in Los Angeles California, in the United States of America. She is currently 80 years old as of the year 2023, but she died in the year 2003 at the age of 60.

It is so obvious that you can hardly find anyone who still recalls that Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas is the first and the only child of Dorothy Dandridge which he had with Harold Nicholas before they separated in October 1951.

Harolyn’s parents were some of the top African American celebrities who excelled in the show Business industry in the 90s and were always on top of their game before they passed away. Her father (Harold) was a great American dancer who specializes in tap dance. Harold was the younger half of the dancing duo the Nicholas Brothers, known as two of the world’s greatest dancers at the time. Their popularity and influence back in the day technically paved way for the recognition of many of the other black dancers that came after them including the famous pop star of the 20th century Michael Joseph Jackson better known as Michael Jackson or (MJ).

Her mother (Dandridge) on the other hand was a great American actress, singer, and dancer. She is the first African-American film star to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress, which was for her performance in Carmen Jones (1954). Dandridge performed as a vocalist in venues such as the Cotton Club and the Apollo Theater. During her early career, she performed as a part of The Wonder Children, and later The Dandridge Sisters, and appeared in a succession of films. She has also been nominated for several other awards and has won many.

Early Life

Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas was born and raised in Los Angeles California, USA. She was partly raised by her mother (Dorothy) and then handicapped caretaker afterward. During the time of her birth, she had a brain injury that led to insufficient oxygen flow into her brain which in turn stunted her cognitive abilities from growing.

As an infant growing up, Suzanne seemed like a healthy baby until she was 2 years old. That’s when her mother Dorothy observed that there was something actually wrong with her. At the age of 2, she couldn’t speak or do even some other stuff just like every other child of her age could simply do. That was when Dorothy started realizing that something was wrong with her. She (Nicholas) did not talk until she was about six years old. 

Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas

Even though many people tried convincing Nicholas’ mother that everything will be ok with her, she was still not satisfied and insisted that she will take her to the hospital to see the doctor. She later took her to the hospital to see a psychoanalyst who diagnosed and carried out a series of examinations on her only to find out that the little child Harolyn had a sort of brain damage termed cerebral anoxia which was caused by cutting off in the oxygen that flows to Nicholas’ brain, during birth which was championed by her delayed labor.

According to Dorothy, her delayed labor happened when he went into labor on the 2nd of September and was ready to go to the hospital for her child’s birth before she noticed that her husband had taken the car to play golf at the golf course.

Harolyn’s Sad Fate 

After the discovery of her daughter’s health challenge, the doctor advised Dorothy to give up Harolyn to a caretaker and she did as the doctor said, although she blamed herself throughout her life for being the cause of her child’s problem but at the same time could not do anything to save her.

If it is possible for a human being to be like a haunted house, maybe that would be me.” she wrote in her autobiography before she died.

Harolyn stayed under the care of a private Caretaker until Dandridge her mother went bankrupt and couldn’t pay for the private care of Harolyn and was forced to put her under the care of a State institution where she can be well taken care of. Dorothy was later found dead On Sept. 8, 1965, some weeks after harolyn’s 22nd birthday.

Even after the death of his Dandridge, Harolyn remained under the care of the state institution till the day she passed away. As we’ve pointed out before, she died in 2003 at the age of 60.

Here Are Some Interesting Facts You Need to Know About Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas

Interesting Facts You Need to Know About Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas

Her Mother Dorothy Dandridge gave birth to one child

The only child Nicholas’s mother Dorothy had before her death was her although she attempted on having another one While filming Carmen Jones(1954), she began an affair with director Otto Preminger that lasted four years, She later became pregnant by him in 1955, but was forced to have an abortion by the studio. She ended the affair when she realized that Preminger had no plans to leave his wife to marry her.

Harolyn’s parents got married at a Hollywood ceremony

During an engagement at the Cotton Club, Dorothy Dandridge met Harold Nicholas, a dancer, and entertainer. They married at a Hollywood ceremony on September 6, 1942. Guests at their wedding included Oscar-winner Hattie McDaniel, jazz singer Etta Jones, and choreographer Nick Castle.

Her Parents Marital Life journey and cause of Death

Harold and Dandridge’s marriage crashed after some years of getting married to each other. They had an unhappy marriage, which deteriorated because of Harold’s womanizing and not giving appropriate care and attention to his family. By 1948, Harold had abandoned his family, leaving her wife Dorothy to take care of their child alone. So Dorothy had no option but to file for divorce in September 1950 and they finalized the separation in 1951.

After many years of separation Harolyn’s mother Dorothy was later Dandridge was found dead, naked, and unresponsive in her apartment by her manager, Earl Mills. A Los Angeles pathology institute determined that the cause of death was an accidental overdose of the antidepressant imipramine. The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office concluded that she died of a fat embolism resulting from a right foot fracture sustained five days previously.

Her father Harold on the other hand died of heart failure in New York City on July 3, 2000. He was 79 when he died.

Harolyn Suzanne Nicholas had Sibling

After the divorce between harolyn’s parents, her father went on to remarry to another woman who later gave birth to another Melih Nicholas who later became Suzanne’s only sibling.

Who are Her grandparents

Her grandparents From her mother’s side;

Her grandmother was ruby Dandridge and her grandfather was Cyril Dandridge. Ruby was an American actress From the early 90s (1900s to 1950s) her grandfather Cyril was a Baptist minister.

Her grandparents from her  father’s side;

Viola Harden was known to be Nicholas’s mother and Ulysses Dominick Nicholas was Nicholas’s father.

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