Legends of Diving Articles


Zale Parry
Featured at the Second
International Legends of Dive Festival

One of her several photos on the cover of Sports Illustrated, Zale Parry is credited with appearing on the cover for the first SI swimsuit edition, She will appear with others in the second annual Legends Festival August 10-12.

Zale Parry is arguably the most famous woman scuba diver in the world today. Zale was a pioneer skin diver in the 1940s and an early underwater equipment tester for Scientific Underwater Research Enterprises in 1953. Zale also helped run the first civilian hyperbaric chamber for divers in California. In 1954 she set a woman's depth record to 209 feet and became the third female instructor to graduate from the L.A. County UICC program. That same year, Zale made her screen debut in Kingdom of the Sea, a Jack Douglas Production, which was shown in 70 countries and had a successful run of several years. Zale's knowledge of skin and scuba diving, as well as

her astounding beauty in Kingdom of the Sea, made the producers of Sea Hunt cast her immediately without so much as a single screen test.

Besides her diving expertise, Zale's artistic talents are manifold from acting to photography to writing. An accomplished underwater photographer herself, in 1957, Zale co-founded the

International Underwater Film Festival that ran for 17years. In 1960, she became the first elected woman president of the U/W Photographic Society. From the 1950s through the 1990s, Zale remained in demand as an actress and underwater stuntwoman for all the Hollywood studios (she never had to audition for a part). Her credits include, Kingdom of the Sea, Sea Hunt, GE Theatre, Wagon Train, Peter Gunn, and more. She also made over two dozen "wet" and "dry" television commercials and appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated several times.
Zale Parry and Lloyd Bridges on the set filming an episode of Sea Hunt.

Even though Zale is "semi-retired" from film, she is not content to rest on her laurels. Zale continues to enthrall and inspire audiences today with her photo presentations and lectures on the beauty of the underwater world. She recently published a book

with Al Tillman entitled, Scuba America Vol. I, the Human History of Sport Diving in America, and is already busy working on Volumes II through V. Zale is a recipient of the NOGI Award for Distinguished Service, DEMA's Reaching Out Award, the Women's Scuba Association Scuba Diver of the Year Award, and the Los Angeles Parks and Recreation Education Award. In 2001, Zale was made a "Lifetime Ambassador at Large," by The Academy of Underwater Arts and Sciences. In 2002, she was inducted into the Cayman Island International Scuba Diving Hall of Fame and received the Beneath

the Sea Diver of the Year Award. Zale has been an ardent supporter of The Women Divers Hall of Fame (WDHOF) since its inception in 1999.

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