Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Pat Boone

Someone left a comment about the fact that my mom and I met Pat Boone's plane at the old airport and asked what other brushes with fame I've had.  I had to smile at that.  
Pat Boone was very special to my mom and me both.  He was mainly just another teenage crush to me, but the reason my mother liked him so much was his squeaky-clean image, and the fact that he was a member of the Church of Christ.  My mother was a third-generation member of the Church of Christ. There aren't that many members of that particular church compared to, say, Baptists, so when we heard about somebody famous being a member, it was very special.  Two other people from that era who were members were Gale Storm (My Little Margie and Oh Susanna) and Kitty Wells (It Wasn't God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels).   
But I digress.  
Pat Boone had a television variety show starting in 1957 called "The Pat Boone Chevy Showroom"; We never missed it.  Because Chevy was the sponsor, my mom sat right down one evening and wrote a letter to Pat Boone telling him that we had two Chevrolets, a 1949 model that my dad drove to work and a brand-new '58 Del Rey.  She firmly believed Pat himself would read that letter and be proud of us for patronizing his sponsors.  In later life, she wrote to presidents, too (only the Republicans, of course).  When she received letters in reply (to me they were obviously form letters), she was ecstatic.  
But again, I digress.
Katz Drugstores were doing well in Kansas City in the fifties, and they decided to sponsor a Pat Boone concert at the Municipal Auditorium.  He was also scheduled to speak to the youth of the city at one of the larger Churches of Christ in town (the Van Brunt congregation, I think).  He had a book out for teenagers at the time, "Twixt Twelve and Twenty".  I made both the concert and the sermon; you couldn't have kept my mother away, so it was no problem getting to either.    
In the Kansas City paper, I saw an article about his coming to town in which his expected arrival time at Municipal Airport was mentioned.  All I had to do was tell my mother, and it was set:  We were going to meet Pat Boone at the airport!  
Of course, since it was in the paper, about five hundred others decided to meet him, too.  But for my mom and me, this wasn't our first rodeo.  Oh no, we regularly attended professional wrestling matches, and we knew how to squeeze through a crowd toward the front, where the action is.  
Next morning in the Kansas City Times (morning edition was the Times, evening was the Star), there we were, and my mom appeared as giddy and excited as any of the teens.  
Mother got several phone calls the next day from people who recognized us in the picture.  
The only other "brush with fame" I had was when Cliff and I went to the church in Plains, Georgia, where Jimmy Carter taught Sunday School.

Jimmy Carter teaching Sunday School at Maranatha Baptist Church
  We got our picture taken with him after church.  We were both so much fatter in the picture that I hate to share it, but hey... I'm not proud. 

And there you have it.


darev2005 said...

Always running around and hob-nobbing with celebrities. And under the guise of a simple country girl. (grin)

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

It's nice to know someone that is a celebrity or least met some personally. I've no claim to fame one way or the other here. Glad you have such great memories and glad you share them too!

Ms Martyr said...

My sister was a huge Pat Boone fan and had Twixt Twelve and Twenty. I think she had one or two other books authored by him in addition to quite a few albums.


I knew there was MORE to your story. You've been holding back. I can't believe it. Cozying up to the President and his wife and getting your photo taken. WOW, that's big. Really big. I hope you shouted it from the roofs after it happened. Some people have all the luck. LOL You obviously were at the right place, at the right time. LOVED hearing about it and Pat. Made me smile. Take care.

Lindie said...

I shook hands with both Richard Nixon and Robert Kennedy during their runs for president.I got out of school to go hear Nixon! Andy Williams was with Robert and he was so short! Our Air Force wives Club had sponsored a tea for Robert. I remember Katz drug stores. They used to be so big! I loved Ricky Nelson at the same time I was a fan for Pat. That was the only reason I watched the Nelson show.

Cheryl @ The Farmer's Daughter said...

Great story! I was a big fan of Pat Boone, I loved his singing voice and his wholesome image. I think it's neat that you got to see him and also the Carters. The only famous person I ever got close to was standing thisclose to Joe Montana, the famous quarterback for the 49er's a few years ago for a photo. I've debated about doing a post and showing the pic, but I've got such a goofy look on my face! :D