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: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0614677
Rosemary's Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosemary_Murphy