Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Morning Reading: Obituary: Mary Mon Toy

My students have often heard me express my fondness for the well-written obituary. I explain how each contains a life and death - characters, settings, conflict, tragedies, triumphs - a story if you will, good lessons for a writer, for those living their own life stories.

Here's one from today's New York Times:

MON TOY--Mary, 93,
died on December 7, 2009 in her beloved New York City. A triple threat: Latin Quarter showgirl; original Broadway cast member in The World of Suzy Wong and House of Flowers; on television on Kojak, Ryan's Hope, Teahouse of the August Moon, I Spy and Drs. Hospital; in movies in Airplane II and Bob Fosse's All That Jazz. She was the first Asian runway model in Paris. Born in Hawaii, her family moved to Seattle in the 1920's only to be uprooted and sent to the Minidoka Japanese American Internment Camp after Pearl Harbor. She left the camp in 1944 on a scholarship to Juilliard procured by Eleanor Roosevelt. The rest of her life was spent in New York City where she was an active member of Screen Actors Guild, AFTRA and Actors' Equity, and generous supporter of The Actors Fund, animal rights and The Japanese American National Museum. A celebration of her life will take place on Sunday, January 31 at 1pm. Call 212-580-0052 for information.

What a life. What a story. And a cameo appearance by Eleanor Roosevelt no less.


1 comment:

Atrium said...

There has to be one heck of a story here. A long life, adversity, creativity, endurance, strength. Who knows more about her?

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