September 16, 2014

All Access Press Club (Subscribers)

Online all-access is free to print subscribers. Username is your account number, 7-digit number before the expiration date on your mailing label. Password is your zip code.


Moving on and moving on
Written by Bill Baird   
Tuesday, January 08, 2013 6:57 PM

It seems that most, if not all, of my 59-plus years of living in Hamilton County that the name Leis has not been involved with providing law and order.

Before I met him, Hamilton County Prosecutor Simon Leis banned Hustler magazine from being sold in Hamilton County, which I thought he exercised too much authority.

I ran into a guy in Miamitown. He had just come through Hamilton, Ohio where Hustler was legal and bought one. He hadn’t opened or read it.

I talked him into selling it to me for no profit and wrote in my column about buying an illegal Hustler in Miamitown.

Leis must not have read the column  because he didn’t come after me. I never read the Hustler but maybe I looked at a few of the pictures.

Where is it now? Destroyed long ago by my better half.

I first met Leis in 1989 when the temporary Miamitown bridge over the Great Miami River washed away in a spring flood.

I was in my second term as Whitewater Township trustee and he had been Hamilton County sheriff for a couple of years.

Before we knew for sure there were fatalities, I had him laughing with one of my dry-wit quips, which proved he had a sense of humor.

I never thought I would live to see the day he wasn’t sheriff. I thought they would have to pry his cold dead hands off of his guns.

Through the years, after learning more about our hard -nosed sheriff, my opinion about him grew into more respect.

He has run a successful law enforcement service for Hamilton County residents.

On Jan. 6, 2013, Leis hung up his guns and rode off into the sunset. God go with you good and faithful servant.

Since the Golden Age of Cinema (1930-1950) has been so long ago, most of the truly great stars from the era have finished their journeys through their passing parade.

Among those still with us from this great era are sisters Olivia de Havilland (1916) and Joan Fontaine (1917), Joan Leslie (1925) along with my all-time favorite singer Rise (pronounced REE-za) Stevens (1913).

Now you know where my daughter Risa got her name. Also among us are the truly great child stars Shirley Temple (1928) and Marilyn Knowlden (1926).

During the past year, one of my favorite stars was the beautiful Ann Rutherford who was born in Vancover, British Columbia, Canada on November 2, 1917.

Like a lot of female stars of the era, her birth year was fudged younger as 1920 during her earlier years.

Ann appeared in 80 roles starting in 1935 in “B” films which included Gene Autry westerns to 1976.

She played Polly Benedict in the Andy Hardy “B” film series in the 1930-40s. She was at her beautiful best as the Spirit of Christmas Past in A Christmas Carol (1938). Her greatest role has to be Carreen O’Hara in Gone With the Wind (1939).

This great star passed away on June 11, 2012 at the age of 94.

Other stars whose careers started during the Golden Age and ending their journeys: Herbert Lom in 113 roles from 1937 to 2004 on Sept. 27 at age 95. Singer/ actress Celeste Holm in 105 roles from 1946 to 2012 on July 15 at age 95.

Also, singer/actor Tony Martin in 39 roles from 1935 to 1982 on july 27 at age 98. Actress Phyllis Thaxter in 68 roles from 1944 to 1992 on August 14 at age 92. Actor Frank Cady in 100 roles from 1947 to 1990 on June 8 at age 96. Actor Harry Carey Jr. in 153 roles from 1946 to 2005 on Dec. 27 at age of 91. Actor Turhan Bey in 42 roles from 1941 to 1998 on Sept. 30 at age 90. Actress Patricia Medina in 92 roles from 1937 to 1978 on April 28 at age 92.

Actress Elyse Knox was in 38 “B” movies from 1937 to 1949 on Feb. 15 at age 92. With her elegance and beauty she was the best part of her films.

She retired from films after marrying football great and sportscaster Tom Harmon (1919-1990).

She is the mother of actor Mark Harmon (1951). Her name Elyse was given to Lisa Armstrong Mansfield and my granddaughters Karie and Lexis.

Next week, I will feature the stars coming after the Golden Age of Cinema who ended their passing parade in 2012.  

Bill Baird is a Whitewater Township resident who writes a weekly column about old movies and Hollywood trivia.