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Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Famous and 65

Look who's turning 65 this month

Find out which celebrities are turning 65 this month!

Image Source: Wikipedia

September 2 - Linda Purl, actress

You may remember this blue-eyed blond from her role as Ashley Pfister on Happy Days, or as Sheila Munroe in the fright flic Visiting Hours. Purl also played Pam Beesly’s mother in The Office and Ben Matlock’s daughter for the first season of the TV show Matlock. Purl was born into the business; her grandmother was a founder of the Actors’ Equity Association, and her mother and father were both actors. 

Although she came into the world in Connecticut, Purl spent her formative years, from the ages of five to fifteen, in Japan. She performed in several plays while at the Imperial Theatre in Tokyo, and caught the eye of Toho, which led to appearances in a handful of films. She returned to the U.S. to go to boarding school, garnering a soap opera role while she was still in high school on The Secret Storm. Then it was off to Finch College before a stint in England to study with Marguerite Beale. After that, Purl put dozens of film, TV and stage roles under her belt, even launching a jazz career.

The beauty has been married several times, all of them ending in divorce. You might have heard of her first husband, Desi Arnaz, Jr. (son of comedienne Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz). Their union lasted a scant year. She then wed screenwriter William Broyles Jr. for four years, followed by a six-year union with Alexander Cary, Master of Falkland (the pair have a son). Her last marriage, to James Vinson Adams, ended in 2011.

Image Source: Wikipedia

September 6 - Anne Henning, Speed Skater

In 1972 this speedster on ice broke world records for the 500 meter and 1,000 meter events, putting pressure on her to come away with a pair of gold medals at the 1972 Winter Olympics in Sapporo. Only 16 at the time, Henning managed to come away with the gold and a new Olympic record in the 500 meter, in spite of being obstructed at the crossing by her opponent. Allowed to re-skate, she shaved her time from 43.70 to 43.33, making her the youngest Olympic Champion in the history of her sport. Her quest for gold in the 1,000 meter went unfulfilled, however, as she came in third, just a hundredth of a second behind the silver medalist. After the Olympics, Henning retired from speed skating.

“People know about speed skating, that was not part of the game when I won my medals,” she said later. “I wanted to go to college and see what else I could do.”

What she could do was to become a fourth-grade teacher and the mother of three children. Henning is currently retired from that profession, too, and lives in Aurora, Colorado. The grandmother of five shares retirement with her husband, Erik Palmer.

Image Source: PGA Tour

September 17 - Scott Simpson, Golfer

Simpson was born in San Diego, California, where the weather is right for outdoor sports all year round. The youngster took up golfing and played for the team at the University of Southern California, where he impressed his coaches by becoming a two-time medalist at the NCAA Championship. After his second win in 1977, he turned pro before graduating in 1978. 

The 6’2” Simpson didn’t disappoint, winning seven PGA Tour events from 1980 to 1998. His crowning moment was a win at the U.S. Open in 1987, his lone major win. He managed to birdie the 14th, 15th and 16th holes of the last round to breeze past Tom Watson by a single stroke, finishing three under par at 277. Simpson contributed as a team member to the 1977 Walker Cup U.S. team, and at the Ryder Cup in 1987.

In 2005, Simpson qualified to play senior golf, winning the Champions Tour title a year later. He is married to wife Cheryl. The couple have two children. Simpson credits his success to a passion for Bible study.

Image Source: Wikipedia

September 22 - John Brennan, CIA Director 

Brennan served his country as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) under U.S. President Barack Obama, from 2013 to 2017, acting as the President’s chief counterterrorism advisor. He had previously served under President George W. Bush as part of his 25-year career with the CIA. Over that time, he was a Near East and South Asia analyst, was station chief in Saudi Arabia, and directed the National Counterterrorism Center. Brennan famously had his security clearance revoked by current President Donald Trump, whom he had harshly criticized. Brennan responded by saying, “My principles are worth far , more than clearances. I will not relent.”

Nowadays, Brennan can be seen on NBC News and MSNBC, serving as a senior national security and intelligence analyst, first appearing on Meet the Press with Chuck Todd. 

His Irish blacksmith father emigrated to the state of New Jersey in 1948, where Brennan was born seven years later. A university student during the Watergate era, Brennan studied political science at Fordham University. He then got a Master of Arts in government with a concentration in Middle East studies at University of Texas at Austin. Brennan is a fluent speaker of Arabic, and his career combined a desire for public service with his avowed wanderlust. 

Brennan is married to Kathy Pokluda Brennan. The couple have a son and two daughters.

Click below for the other articles in the September 2020 Senior Spirit


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