With winsome charm and a voice that could melt butter,
You sent our hearts all aflutter
As you introduced that week's teleplay
That we had been anticipating all day.
A Japanese wife, Sister Ann, and as Nefertiti you reigned,
Throughout it all we were always entertained,
But oft came away with a stride full of spring
And a satisfaction that only a happy ending can bring.
Some said you were too good to be true
But to us you were someone we thought we knew,
A dignified and lovely lady with eyes of blue-gray
Who touched our lives in a very positive and personal way.
Television as a medium is such a tool of power
That we felt you belonged to us during that half-hour,
When you said, "And we'll see you next week?" without much ado
We knew that we would be there if you would too.
Well, all good things must come to an end,
You retired and our adult lives we started to begin
And yet, we never forgot you all the years through
For, in your movies, we saw you as if anew.
An actress who diligently worked to earn her pay
From dawn to dusk many a day
To evolve as the product of her dreams
Not a small task, by anyone's means.
We learned that the disciplined professional we grew to adore
Had been a popular movie star before
Burning her bridges to seek a brand new career,
Becoming the "American Dream," our lady pioneer!
And then too many years later, it was hard to believe
You returned to star in "Lady in a Corner" and "Christmas Eve,"
Along with "Amanda" we laughed and cried
And cheered with "Grace" as "Charles Patrick" she defied.
They said you were championing an old-fashioned morality
While positively glowing with charm and vitality,
Call us all old-fashioned and out-of-date
We could not think of a better fate.
You are our shining example, a star so bright
For all to behold, an everlasting sight,
A great gracious gentlewoman, exquisite and strong
Who strove to "make a difference" all her life long.
Oh, beautiful lady, God gave you the talent to give
The memories and inspiration to carry with us as long as we live,
We thank Him for bringing you into the world
And we thank you for opening that door and into our lives having twirled.