Biography of Comic Strip Advisor Mary Worth Part 2

About the famous comic strip advice giver Mary Worth, history and biography of the character.

PEOPLE WHO NEVER WERE--YET LIVE TODAY

MARY WORTH

Dennie, miraculously recovered from his childhood handicap, has become the joy of Mary's life. He is a department store executive with a lovely wife and family. (It must be said that Dennie strayed once, lured into an entanglement by one of the evil adventuresses who, along with cads and bounders, populate Mary's life and the lives of those she loves. However, due to his grandmother's intervention, the affair ended.)

Over the years, Mary has had several offers of marriage. In 1949 she met wealthy bubble-gum manufacturer and verse-writer Drum Greenwood, who was then foolishly in love with Bebe Lacrosse, a beautiful young woman married secretly to Drum's son. However, a year later, sobered by recent blindness--caused by a tragic fire--Drum realized Mary's true worth and offered to invest money in a slum-clearance project in her name if she would marry him. Naturally, she succumbed to his proposal, willing to offer her matronly body and heart to aid the poor. But she didn't make it to the church. Her car crashed, and she developed a convenient amnesia. Several years later she met Edwin Penwhistle, a scoundrel who married women for their money, insured their lives heavily, then did away with them. Luckily, before she took the fatal step, the police tipped her off. More recently, a rich athlete was interested in Mary, but she realized that the difference in their life-styles (he liked vigorous tennis games, while her most strenuous activity is collecting seashells) would doom the happiness of their prospective union, so she fondly said good-bye to him. In 1978 she considered marrying an elderly Shakespearan actor, but their marital plans fell apart.

Mary has a small apartment at 535 Hudson Street in New York's Greenwich Village, where she constantly meets actors and writers, as well as people in other glamorous professions, all of whom have some kind of problem, usually one involving the heart. She also spends considerable time visiting her longtime friends Frank and Anne Crawford in Jennings, O., where Frank is superintendent of schools.

No matter where she is, Mary is usually the deus ex machina at a turning point in someone's life, the fairy godmother who comes through with wise counsel in the nick of time. Her colorful advisees have included a singer confined to a wheelchair after a U.S.O. plane crash in W.W.II; 92-year-old iconoclast Beauregard Peepers; a jockey who won a fortune quoting Shakespeare on a quiz show; cartoonist Teddy Barr; an FBI man who found that the lid of a box Mary bought at an auction was really a template for decoding secret messages; a fat girl who got thin when spurred by love; socialite Clio Fairfax; an impoverished playwright and his girl friend; a sharp-tongued, aggressive female reporter for a gossip sheet, who borrowed money from Mary in an airport and later rented a room from her; a bespectacled Latin teacher in love with a bearded, silver-tongued cad ("You're too modest, my sweet!" he said, with a seductive turn of phrase. "You mistake sincere admiration for flattery!").

During her long life, Mary has seen many social changes and has managed to take them in stride, without giving up the strong moral principles inculcated by her Presbyterian upbringing. Never one to judge others harshly, she now tolerates unconventional life-styles far more than she used to, and though her adventures continue to be melodramatic, they are close enough to real life and its problems to keep millions of her followers fascinated.

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