Place of Birth: Okinawa, Japan
Date of Birth: May 31, 1975
*Korean, Japanese (mother)
Merle Dandridge is an American actress and singer. Her father was an African-American U.S. serviceman, from Memphis, Tennessee. Her mother was a local Okinawan, of Korean and Japanese descent.
Merle spent much of her childhood in Wheatland, California, and Bellevue, Nebraska, U.S.
Merle has said:
My mother is half Japanese and Korean. And I have older siblings who are mostly Korean, 1/4 Japanese, because of my mom’s first marriage to a Korean man. I was born in Okinawa but most of my time in Asia was in Seoul. My mother belongs to two cultures that didn’t really accept her 100 percent. So she had this understanding of rejection based on her own experiences. She would look at me and say, “You are of different ethnicities and you might not always be accepted so go into the world knowing that and know that you are more than that. You are beautiful.”