May 19, 1980 12:00 PM

Penny Marshall

Penny Marshall can cry or laugh with me any day (PEOPLE, April 28). She’s the tops.

Judi Garner


Dr. Larimer Mellon

One crucial factor was neglected in an otherwise superb story on Gwen and Larry Mellon—that their work is a reflection of deeply held Christian convictions. The Mellons stay on and try to do an impossible task because they, like Albert Schweitzer, believe God cares about potbellied Haitian kids, and that life is found by “losing it” in service to others.

James L. Merrell

St. Louis

Re Dr. Mellon: It would seem that occasionally a camel does slip through the needle’s eye.

Dorothy Smith

Glen Ellyn, Ill.

Larry Wilcox

Larry Wilcox is the best part of CHiPs. At last you’ve seen past the glare of Erik Estrada’s teeth and found the real star of the show.

Kathy Prickett

Carthage, N.C.

Larry Wilcox’s ail-American, boyish looks we can find next door. Estrada is different and the reason CHiPs is a hit.

Heidi Randall

Worcester, Mass.

Ralph Keyes

Being 6’1½” tall, I’d like to tell Mr. Keyes, was no fun. All the kids in grade school ridiculed me for being a “giant.” In high school it got worse from the boys I towered over. But now I’m proud to be tall, and I have a baby daughter a lot taller than average. I’ve learned to sing a few verses of Randy Newman’s Short People to short strangers who still try to put me down.

Mrs. Susan Wikoff

Long Beach, Calif.

Red Skelton

I grew up loving Red Skelton and his antics. His words “and may God bless” meant love, but your article has shown me another side of this man. To destroy those wonderful shows and not share them with children who are growing up in a troubled world seems selfish and coldhearted. I sincerely hope he proves me wrong.

Cheryl Lynn Bryant

Danville, Va.

Hostage Doll

As a state-licensed sitter for seven years, I feel the real “criminal” in your story about the “hostage doll” was that smirky mother. After 60-hour weeks of diarrhea diapers, crawling around on my hands and knees building matchbox car speedways and teaching 2-year-olds how to paint, share and be trained, I will irately chase people all over my state to collect every overdue dime owed me.

Meredithe Juliano

Granby, Conn.

I can’t understand why Judge Mayo says it is nice that “people” care about a child and her doll. Mom, Dad and the babysitter cared about economic principles. It was Harvey Massey, a truck driver from Ripley, Ohio, who cared about a little girl and her doll.

Del Compton


Seeing a picture of my dad, Harvey Massey, in a magazine I love made me feel very proud. It shows that good men are still measured by what they do for others. Thank you.

Cathie Massey Pfeffer

Ripley, Ohio

Star Tracks

Our wedding picture in PEOPLE was really quite good. But Vincente Minnelli is 72 years old, not 77. I’m 42, not 60ish, as you stated. Actually, I wish you had said 35, as that’s what I tell all my friends—but don’t we all.

Lee Minnelli

Beverly Hills


I was outraged by Virginia Cummings’ letter regarding Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. To say smugly that “the only excuse for crib death is ignorance” is atrocious. So many parents have no warning, no second chance. To add guilt to the suffering already felt is irresponsible. I hope no other parents who have lost a child to SIDS are exposed to the pain of her comments.

P. Wisniewski

Jackson, Mich.

Vern Hansen’s letter regarding “Disneyland vs. Khrushchev” is not correct, unwittingly, I’m sure. The truth is that my father, Walt Disney, was excited about the possibility of Khrushchev visiting Disneyland and eager to be his host. This was my recollection, which I verified with my mother. It was our local security (Los Angeles, not Disneyland) who finally vetoed the visit. I hope Mr. Hansen will not take offense, but even small truths are important.

Diane Disney Miller

Encino, Calif.

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