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Dennis Mullen & the Ghosts of Titchfield

03 Jul

My late friend Dennis Mullen What is a very unique person. He was a writer and an entrepreneur and definitely an adventure or in the spirit of Errol Flynn. He created a website he called in search of Errol Flynn and produced a wonderful blend of specialties he called Zaca Tea. He travel to Jamaica and explored the remains of the The Titchfield hotel which everyone told him would be impossible to achieve. The property was part of the military grounds and no one could ever get access. But they didn’t count on the charm of Dennis Mullen. He made friends with somebody at the base and they trusted Errol Flynn and the blog beside one of the pools where Errol and Errol Conrad sat so many years ago. He was beside Pat Waymore at her 84th birthday. He explored Navy Island. He even discovered a copy of my wicked wicked ways dedicated to Flynn‘s parents and facilitated its sale. He made Sand dial necklaces from the sand at Navy Island. He sent one of these to Rory Flynn and I saw her charmed and delighted eyes when she opened it. He loved the Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee! I miss my dear friend …

 

 

— David DeWitt

 

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  1. Ralph Schiller

    July 3, 2021 at 8:26 pm

    Thank-you David for this tribute to Dennis Mullen, who was a true friend of Errol Flynn’s legacy and memory. I salute him. By the way it is Bud Abbott & Lou Costello!

     
    • David DeWitt

      July 5, 2021 at 1:10 pm

      Thanks, Ralph. It was a very kind and generous guy and I am still in touch with his parents.

       
  2. Debbyphielix

    July 5, 2021 at 5:43 am

    A wonderful story David. I hope he rests in peace. I propose a toast to this true Flynn fan

     
    • David DeWitt

      July 5, 2021 at 1:11 pm

      Thank you, a great idea and I just toasted him …

       
  3. David DeWitt

    July 5, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    From Mirta Gonzalez Astudillo on the FB version of the blog:

    The Ticthfield Peninsula, along with Navy Island, separates the eastern and western ports in Portland Parish. Its colorful history dates back to the 16th and 17th centuries, telling stories of fortresses, celebrities, grand hotels, and sweet bananas.

    The first British settlers settled on the peninsula in the 17th century, and later established Fort George on the peninsula in 1729, when British troops at war with the Windward Maroons requested additional soldiers as reinforcement. The fort was shaped like an arrow with walls seven feet thick and five feet high. Three original mounted canons from the property are still present, and were restored by the Portland Parish Council in 1967. Today, Titchfield High School occupies what was once the barracks of the fort.
    Port Antonio became a mecca for banana production in the late 1900’s with the establishment of the banana industry in the city, and the trade route from Jamaica to the east coast of the United States, by Captain Lorenzo Dow Baker. With the development of the industry came the need for accommodation, as Port Antonio saw an increasing number of foreign visitors. In 1895, Captain Baker built the original Titchfield Hotel on the Titchfield Peninsula, a modest estate with a main house and cabins. However, in 1905, Baker demolished the original and rebuilt the Titchfield Hotel for what later became international acclaim, as one of the grandest hotels in the Western Hemisphere at the time. The hotel boasted over 400 rooms, 600 feet. Of piazza and modern amenities that are rarely found in hotels at that time. The genesis of tourism in Jamaica is attributed not only to the city of Port Antonio, but also to the significant appeal created by the Titchfield Hotel.

    Later in the 1930s, the devastating effects of the Panama disease on cultivation caused the banana industry to decline and with it, so too was tourism. Port Antonio’s charm was rediscovered with the arrival of the flamboyant Errol Flynn, who bought the Titchfield Hotel and Marina Island in the 1950s. The resort area quickly became a celebrity hideaway, as Flynn entertained friends like Marilyn Munroe, Katherine Hepburn, Tony Curtis, Lou Costello among many others.

    Unfortunately in 1969 the Titchfield Hotel was destroyed by fire. Today all that remains are ruins of the property, reminders of the greatness of one of the best hotels in the world.

    Local knowledge:
    Situated on the Titchfield Peninsula they are outstanding examples of the prevailing architectural styles during the various periods of development of the city of Port Antonio. Take a look and note the Victorian New England, Jamaican Georgian and Victorian gingerbread houses throughout the area.

    Famous for:
    Errol Flynn, the beautiful Australian-born Hollywood star, fell in love with Jamaica and is said to have described the island as more beautiful than any woman he has ever had. known.

    Do not miss:
    The Errol Flynn Marina on the Titchfield Peninsula is home to 32 fixed-berth births and is primarily in demand by yachts. The marina has several shops, restaurants, and a beach, and is a popular hangout for locals and visitors alike.

     
  4. shangheinz

    July 5, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    Writer, inventor, explorer- Dennis was a true Flynnmate. His memory lives on right here on your EF Blog, David.

     
    • David DeWitt

      July 6, 2021 at 11:49 am

      Indeed! Bung ho, kind sir ….

       
  5. Jack Marino

    July 6, 2021 at 4:18 am

    Dennis Mullen was a true friend and a true Flynn fan. We talked on the phone for hours when we talked. He was very knowledgeable about Errol Flynn and movies in Hollywood.

    He lived in Havana for 7 years he even had a Cuban wife, He knew everyplace where Errol went to and walked and he even went to the prison where Steve Hayes was held and where he escaped from Batista men. Dennis had a lot of all this written but it wasn’t in book form. I put Dennis and Steve in contact with each other and they hit it off so well since they both knew all the same places in Cuba.

    Dennis was one of my sponsors to my radio show with his ZACA TEA which I told him to name it that and he loved it. We both had plans for me to fly with him out of Vancouver to Havana. We were going to go in on an artistic visa to film all the areas where Errol Flynn worked, hung out in bars and hotels. Our plan was to buy ten boxes of top notch Cuban cigars each and he would sell them up in Vancouver and he would send me cigars as he always did in film cans.

    He had gone to Jamaica to meet Patrice to get her to hire him to write her biography. I told him to tell her this is her last chance to write her ‘story’ about her and Errol and what happen when he left her for Beverly and how she got the news of his death.

    I told Dennis to emphasize that someone in the future would write a Higham type book about her life with Errol and it will all be lies.

    Dennis was the only one that could help her write her memoirs and set the record straight, she had most of it done too.

    She wasn’t interested and that decision will one day come back and bit her in the future. Dennis was a great writer and her book would have been a hit by his command of the English languge.

    Our trip didn’t happen because Dennis got sick and he went fast with his sickness and he couldn’t talk on the phone.

    I never got to say goodbye and joke with him. I miss him terribly he will always be with me and his voice is always in my ears.

     
  6. David DeWitt

    July 6, 2021 at 12:12 pm

    Titchfield-Hotel-Brochure3.jpg

    Titchfield-Hotel-Brochure2.jpg

    Titchfield-Hotel-Brochure.jpg

     
  7. Ralph Schiller

    July 6, 2021 at 11:21 pm

    Thank-you Jack Marino, for this insight into Dennis Mullen and his great talent as an author. This was a great loss to all of us that Patrice Wymore turned him down to put her memoirs into a book.

     
  8. tassie devil

    July 13, 2021 at 3:18 am

    To all the members here that know us We did not know Dennis but at our age of life death starts to become frequent each loss is felt by so many. He did so much for Errol and his legacy . And for his friendships for those who knew him should be counted as the lucky few. Genene and Steve

     
 
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