"You remind me of a young MARY TYLER MOORE..."
I first heard these words while getting ready for a ballet recital when I was 4 years old. Then again at a theatre competition in high school. Then again in college. And again and again until it was finally time to sit down with The Dick Van Dyke Show. One endearing "oh Rob" later and my heart...like the rest of the nation's...was hers.
How was this woman so graceful, feminine and hilarious all at the same time? Why did I believe everything that came out of her mouth? How did she bring so much heart to everything she did? How could she be so instantly likable?
And...oh my word...that smile...
Since then, I've read, marked and highlighted her autobiography, watched countless interviews on YouTube and devoured I-don't-even-know-how-many-hours of television....each time finding light bulb moments, bits of inspiration and stirring insight into how one spunky woman could take up so much space in this world.
She'll never know what a role model she has been for me...as an actress and as a girl just trying to make it after all. And I know I'm just one of many who feels this way. What a legacy she has left behind. For everything you were, both on and off screen...
Thank you, Mary.