Saturday, October 4, 2014


It was hard to shine in my family. I was surrounded by 5 intelligent, talented, funny, high-achieving siblings. I always felt inadequate (still do). But one thing made me more special than any of them: my godmother was Rosemary Murphy. Rosemary was my mother's best friend at Manhattanville College. Mom went on to marry my Dad, have a station wagon load of children, and leave New York to make a home in Atlanta. Rosemary went on to to perform in 15 Broadway productions, in film and on TV (Eleanor and Franklin, To Kill a Mockingbird, Julia, Walking Tall, to name a few).

I was 8 years old when we left New York, but I remember visiting her cluttered, book-filled apartment on the upper east side. I'm sure if I could see it now I'd be fascinated by the photographs, art and show posters, but back then I was just enthralled with her little dachshund, the dressing-room lights on her vanity, and the black eye masks she wore when she slept. She was the most glamourous thing I had ever seen.

She would visit us occasionally in Atlanta. I was never so proud as I was when we could show her off. She was larger than life, tall in her mink coat, a booming voice. She definitely did not look like she was from around this part of the world.

Rosemary died this past July after a stellar 60 year career. This September, her friends and family held a memorial for her at Sardi's, the celebrated restaurant in the Theater District of Manhattan, where hundreds of show-business celebrities' caricatures adorn its walls. Rosemary's is among them. My sister Catherine and I were observers, on the outside looking in at another world of actors from previous generations. We didn't recognize anybody, but knew they were names many would. Actors, agents, friends, family--a community rich in history and stories I'll never know.

Thank you, Rosemary. We were always so proud of you. I hope you and mom are best friends again now.

See more of Rosemary here:
Rosemary's IMDb:
And here:
Rosemary's Wikipedia:

1 comment: