Thursday, August 06, 2009

Sincerely, John Hughes


I was babysitting for my mom's friend Kathleen's daughter the night I wrote that first fan letter to John Hughes. I can literally remember the yellow grid paper, the blue ball point pen and sitting alone in the dim light in the living room, the baby having gone to bed.

I poured my heart out to John, told him about how much the movie mattered to me, how it made me feel like he got what it was like to be a teenager and to feel misunderstood.

(I felt misunderstood.)

I sent the letter and a month or so later I received a package in the mail with a form letter welcoming me as an "official" member of The Breakfast Club, my reward a strip of stickers with the cast in the now famous pose.

I was irate.

I wrote back to John, explaining in no uncertain terms that, excuse me, I just poured my fucking heart out to you and YOU SENT ME A FORM LETTER.

That was just not going to fly.

He wrote back.

"This is not a form letter. The other one was. Sorry. Lots of requests. You know what I mean. I did sign it."

He wrote back and told me that he was sorry, that he liked my letter and that it meant a great deal to him. He loved knowing that his words and images resonated with me and people my age. He told me he would say hi to everyone on my behalf.

"No, I really will. Judd will be pleased you think he's sexy. I don't."

I asked him if he would be my pen pal.

He said yes.

"I'd be honored to be your pen pal. You must understand at times I won't be able to get back to you as quickly as I might want to. If you'll agree to be patient, I'll be your pen pal."


For two years (1985-1987), John Hughes and I wrote letters back and forth. He told me - in long hand black felt tip pen on yellow legal paper - about life on a film set and about his family. I told him about boys, my relationship with my parents and things that happened to me in school. He laughed at my teenage slang and shared the 129 question Breakfast Club trivia test I wrote (with the help of my sister) with the cast, Ned Tanen (the film's producer) and DeDe Allen (the editor). He cheered me on when I found a way around the school administration's refusal to publish a "controversial" article I wrote for the school paper. And he consoled me when I complained that Mrs. Garstka didn't appreciate my writing.

"As for your English teacher…Do you like the way you write? Please yourself. I'm rather fond of writing. I actually regard it as fun. Do it frequently and see if you can't find the fun in it that I do."


He made me feel like what I said mattered.

"I can't tell you how much I like your comments about my movies. Nor can I tell you how helpful they are to me for future projects. I listen. Not to Hollywood. I listen to you. I make these movies for you. Really. No lie. There's a difference I think you understand."


"It's been a month of boring business stuff. Grown up, adult, big people meetings. Dull but necessary. But a letter from Alison always makes the mail a happening thing."


"I may be writing about young marriage. Or babies. Or Breakfast Club II or a woman's story. I have a million ideas and can't decide what's next. I guess I'll just have to dive into something. Maybe a play."

"You've already received more letters from me than any living relative of mine has received to date. Truly, hope all is well with you and high school isn't as painful as I portray it. Believe in yourself. Think about the future once a day and keep doing what you're doing. Because I'm impressed. My regards to the family. Don't let a day pass without a kind thought about them."


There were a few months in 1987 when I didn't hear from John. I missed his letters and the strength and power and confidence they gave me and so I sent a letter to Ned Tanen who, by that time, was the President of Paramount Pictures (he died earlier this year). In my letter I asked Mr. Tanen if he knew what was up with John, why he hadn't been writing and if he could perhaps give him a poke on my behalf.

He did.

I came home from school soon after to find an enormous box on my front porch filled with t-shirts and tapes and posters and scripts and my very own Ferris Bueller's Day Off watch.

And a note.

"I missed you too. Don't get me in trouble with my boss any more. Sincerely, John Hughes."


Fast forward.

1997. I was working in North Carolina on a diversity education project that partnered with colleges and universities around the country to implement a curriculum that used video production as an experiential education tool. On a whim, I sent John a video about the work we were doing. I was proud of it and, all these years later, I wanted him to be proud too.

Late one night I was in the office, scheduled to do an interview with a job candidate. Ten minutes or so into the call it was clear that he wasn't the right guy, but I planned to suffer through.

Then the phone rang.

1…2…3…4…a scream came from the other room and 1…2…3…my boss Tony was standing in my doorway yelling, "John Hughes is on the phone!!"

I politely got off the phone with the job candidate who was no longer a candidate and

Hit. Line. Two.

"Hi, John."

"Hi, Alison."

We talked for an hour. It was the most wonderful phone call. It was the saddest phone call. It was a phone call I will never forget.


John told me about why he left Hollywood just a few years earlier. He was terrified of the impact it was having on his sons; he was scared it was going to cause them to lose perspective on what was important and what happiness meant. And he told me a sad story about how, a big reason behind his decision to give it all up was that "they" (Hollywood) had "killed" his friend, John Candy, by greedily working him too hard.


He also told me he was glad I had gotten in touch and that he was proud of me for what I was doing with my life. He told me, again, how important my letters had been to him all those years ago, how he often used the argument "I'm doing this for Alison" to justify decisions in meetings.

Tonight, when I heard the news that John had died, I cried. I cried hard. (And I'm crying again.) I cried for a man who loved his friends, who loved his family, who loved to write and for a man who took the time to make a little girl believe that, if she had something to say, someone would listen.

Thank you, John Hughes. I love you for what you did to make me who I am.

Sincerely, Alison Byrne Fields.

1,415 comments:

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Stephanie said...

Wow! That was a really incredible, inspirational story. I immediately shared the link on my facebook. Thank you for sharing your interaction and the positive impact John Hughes had on your life. How cool that you were his pen pal! I could only dream of being so lucky with the really influential entertainers in my life.
I was young when these movies came out, but I grew up on them and Sixteen Candles and Breakfast Club were two of my favorite movies of all time. Well, of course, Ferris Buehler is a CLASSIC! =) Thank you! This brought me to tears, it truly touched me.

Jeff said...

This is one of the best blog posts I've ever seen.

Hughes' films were, no screw that, ARE a very important part of my life and who I am.

Thanks very much for sharing this.

supernaturalpodcast said...

Thank you for sharing your story... it made me teary reading it. As a child of the 80's and a great fan of Hughes, I was devastated when I heard the news this morning. John Hughes touched so many of us in ways no filmmaker ever could (or has), and left such a lasting impression. He will be greatly missed.

Jill Eden said...

Now there is a man who died "with his boots on".

Thank you for sharing your amazing journey and such a wonderful character.

Cheers John and thank you for your work.
Alison, thank you for sharing your journey.

Jill

Melissa said...

Great story. So jealous.
I'm really going to miss him.

LA Filmcutter said...

This is truly an amazing tribute...an incredible and sensitive look into your ongoing pen-pal relationship with John Hughes. I've always considered myself one of his biggest fans, and travelled to Chicago last year to visit all the filming sites from his teen films.

You are so very lucky to have known him in this way. Your post has helped me to understand him a way I never have before; his outlook, why he left Hollywood, etc. Thank you so very much for sharing this! You have no idea how much it means.

- David

Kimberley said...

This is an amazing and wonderful story, and the best John Hughes tribute I have seen. I was also a teenager during the 80's and his movies also meant so much to me. It thrills me to know that he really WAS doing it for us. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us.

leyla a. said...

Truly Amazing! I am envious of your relationship.

ResourcefulMommy said...

Thank you so much for sharing this incredible story about an incredible man.

kt said...

I love this, Alison, and I appreciate your willingness to share it with the rest of us. One thing that occurred to me is what it shows us all about being thankful. You had this fantastic penpal relationship with John Hughes because you took the time to say thank you becuase you loved something that he did. In this freaking crazy world, where everyone seems to focus on the negative, we forget small gestures like that. What you did obviously made a huge impact on John, and now it's made a huge impact on us. So, thank you!

Unwoman said...

This is just so touching. Amazing.

Anonymous said...

Awesome stuff, thanks for sharing that. John will be missed.

Chelsea said...

What a great blog entry! Thanks for sharing. John Hughes was one in a zillion -- and this confirms it.

Anonymous said...

Alison,

Never thought of John Hughes to be that cool. However, your blog posting clears out the doubt that I had all these years regarding why he left Hollywood. It all makes sense. Thank you for pouring your hear out to us and thank Neak Boortz for putting this link up on his website. RIP John and thanks for all the memories we kids of the 80s have today.

Josh

Wanderluster said...

What a wonderful tribute to a man who was able to touch so many lives. Say the name "John Hughes" to anybody from our generation and you will get an instant reaction and appreciation for his work. For me, his movies were a reflection of my life... my hopes, aspirations, worries, sorrows, joys, and laughs. He always made you feel like you were never alone. And to know that he 'wrote for Alison' just confirms the truth and honesty that shined through his work. I can recite every line in Sixteen Candles and hope my daughter will be able to as well some day.

Well said, Alison. What a wonderful gift to have had such a cherished friend in your life.

Anonymous said...

Please join my Facebook group, "Let's Chip in and Buy Cameron's House."

I started this group when I saw Cameron's house from Ferris Bueller was for sale in June; I think it would be a great tribute to John Hughes if EVERYONE participated in honor of his memory.

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=121452763760&ref=ts

Mike Browne said...

What a wonderful story. Thank you so very much for sharing something that is clearly so meaningful to you emotionally and spiritually. I feel honored to have read this.

Kimberly said...

Wow! A truly powerful story. It's nice to know something Non-Hollywood about John Hughes.

Susan Asher said...

Yep, I agree. One of the greatest stories I have read. Congratulations to you, Alison, on reaching out to John Hughes and for creating such a successful life for yourself.

davedirt01 said...

This was amazing. Thank you so much for posting this. We all lost a bit of our childhood yesterday.

Vapok said...

Wow... This is truly a remarkable story Alison.

I've forward this around to everyone I know. Thank you for taking the time to share, and warmest wishes to you.

Paulindublin said...

I cannot think of a finer tribute to a man who will be deeply missed by so many. I think what I was most moved by is that he was the nice guy that so many of us hoped he would be. You are fortunate to have experienced his generosity at first hand.

Regards

Paul

Anonymous said...

Thank you. Know you are getting a ton of these, but your post really brought me back to the specific feelings of my youth. John Hughes was my youth and it is painful to know that he is no longer. However, as opposed to losing part of my history, I feel like this event (and posts like yours) has brought me back, closer to my memories and experiences that I never should have lost track of in the first place.

s

Jinxi said...

Wow! This was incredible and moving.

John definitely "got" what life is all about. It makes me love his films even MORE.

Thank you for sharing this beautiful story.

Jealous Bitch said...

Unbelievable. Thank you so much for sharing. His work affected me deeply; his films made me feel OK to be different.

http://rebeccarose2004.blogspot.com/2009/08/rip-john-hughes.html

Wendy said...

This is astonishing. Thank you.

Wendy
Lewisburg High School Class of 1987

Marty said...

Wonderfully remembered, wonderfully written. Thanks so much for the post. I'm glad to see it's getting the notice it deserves.

staceylevine said...

Your story was a touching tribute to a man that understood our teen angst. Thank You for writing it.

sean said...

Your Blog about John Hughes was awesome & inspiring, and by the way it seems to be racing around the web don't be surprised if a book deal comes your way. Whether Mr. Hughes would approve of you telling the story of your pen pal to the masses we may never know. He was a complex and interesting man and I'm certain that future generations will compare him to Shakespeare. Thanks for sharing your wonderful story.

St Clare said...

Thanks Alison for sharing this. It really touched me.

Natalie said...

This was so beautiful! I'm sorry for your loss, but I am happy you made such a wonderful friend.

Precie said...

Thank you for sharing this. It's nice to know the man behind the films was as genuine and relatable as his films were. His films communicated generations, and it's wonderful to see not only that he cared about his audience as real people but also that you represented so many of us (our feelings, our appreciation, our sense of kinship with his films) to him.

Chris said...

Wow, how awesome. First of all, the art of handwritten correspondence is dead and missed.

Secondly, thank you SO much for sharing this. It was warm, heartfelt, genuine, and incredibly sweet.

Anonymous said...

This was a truly, truly beautiful post. I didn't cry when I heard of his death, but your post made me cry like a little girl. And I'm so sorry for the loss you must be feeling now. My blessings to you, sweetheart, and thank you for sharing this with us all.

Anaxua said...

this was touching, thank you for sharing- i'm sorry for your loss.

Mama Mary said...

I'm crying now too, what a beautiful post and what am samazing story. Good for you for reaching out to him and good for him. He touched so many lives and his legacy will live on forever. Thank you for sharing this story with the world.

Peter said...

Thank you for sharing this amazing story.

VitaminR said...

Wow Alison that post just made me cry like a baby. What an incredible thing and what a wonderful relationship you had with him. My heart has been heavy since hearing the news of his passing. I was just talking with some girlfriends the other day saying we should have a John Hughes movie night. His movies had such a great impact on my teen formative years. I also think the helped form the snarky sense of humor I have to this day. Thank you so much for sharing this with all of us--just makes me love him all the more....and it makes me a wee bit envious of you...in a good way ;-) Take care.

Jake Sherlock said...

Wow! What a great story. Thank you for sharing it. I hope all of the good vibes other readers are leaving here help you find strength in what must be a very difficult time. I'm sad the world has lost John Hughes (I can't wait to share his movies with my kids -- the oldest is 1 1/2; the younger is due in March), but you lost more than a great filmmaker -- you lost a friend, a pen pal and an inspiration.

Laura said...

thank you, alison. thank you. this really made my day. how wonderful for you to provide your john hughes correspondence with us :) gave me the warm fuzzies.

Jewels said...

Thank you for posting this and sharing your beautiful story.

Anonymous said...

Gosh, Alison, this has to be the best thing I've seen, read or heard since John Hughes' passing. How warm and personal (and really well-written). It touched my heart. I peeked at this when you shared it with "Fuz" Mike Edwards on Facebook. My goodness, what a wonderful piece! A very fitting tribute!

My condolences for the loss of your pen pal.

Mike Street

Kate said...

Alison, this is beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing.

Moviezzz said...

A wonderful story.

He will be missed.

But his films will never be fogotten.

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing Alison

Nicci said...

OMG - I'm sitting here all teared up at work. What a wonderful tribute. I knew that I always liked his movies, but how very cool that he was such a great guy in "real life", too. Wow!

Thomas said...

Very nice.

Would you consider scanning the entire letters John wrote - if you don't feel that's too personal?

Anonymous said...

Woooow!

curious patient said...

Thank you so much for sharing. This was a beautiful piece. Brought tears to my eyes.

Mack Arillo said...

Aw, Heck. You made me cry.

BR..K. .LL.N said...

Glad you had this, wish I had a mentor. Sorry for a loss of your friend but he will always be with you.

Tricia said...

I have always loved John Hughes films, and now have such a deep respect and admiration for the man. Thank you for sharing.

maggiemay said...

Thanks for sharing your memories of John Hughes with us. So sorry for your loss.

Cathy Rospotynski said...

Hello Allison! Thanks for sharing great insight into a great man. I enjoy writing and I applaud your courage in sharing your story. What a great inspiration knowing you had such a great impact on popular culture by influencing one of our great movie makers of all time. May you use your talent and knowledge in a similar fashion to keep telling great stories with heart so that the next generation of teens may know that someone understands them as John Hughes understood us. This new generation needs someone to inspire them and maybe you can be one of those people. Thanks for sharing.

Alkamal said...

Your story made me sad and happy in equal measure.
Thank you for the wonderful tale.
You deserve all the recognition you get.

Al, London, UK.

Anonymous said...

God knows if you'll read all these, Alison, but after reading this...getting teary eyed...being inspired...I SAW YOU WERE THE ONE WHO WROTE THIS! You go, girl. Hope all is well with you.

xo Lisa Jenkins

Robert Greenfield said...

Wow. What a guy - thanks for sharing.

FUTURE said...

so cool

Mediahound said...

Thank you so much for writing this and sharing your experience with us. This was so beautiful and better than anything anyone is writing about John Hughes.

Eric K. said...

I'm speechless. Thanks for sharing this.

Amanda @ High Impact Mom said...

This was tweeted earlier and I opened it...forgot about it..and just got around to reading it. I am now sitting inches from my sleeping 2 yo and crying for you. For adolescence gone...for John Hughes..

Thank you for sharing.
Amanda

MDG said...

Hi Alison,

I am so glad that you shared this.. a window into the life of a legend in movies, as an example, as a father, friend, motivation and inspiration. Thank you. This is amazing.

Anonymous said...

Allison, thanks for sharing your story about your relationship with John Hughes. I was so touched by it that I shared it with my wife and daughters. I think it shows them the value of being a good human being and the value of good storytelling.

For a few minutes you've made the world a nicer place. Thank you.

Alexa Young said...

What a beautiful tribute, and so eloquently written. Thank you. I'm sharing this with everyone I know. All the best to you--and to John's family, friends and the countless fans (like me) who will most certainly miss him. XO

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful entry. Thank you so much for sharing. :)

Emily said...

Thank you. And not just for posting this, but for having the courage to be the kind of fan we all wish we could be. And for helping John Hughes shape movies that helped shape me.

Kara said...

Thank you for posting John's letters to you. He will be missed.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing, what an incredible story! Growing up in the 80s would have been quite different without his presence. What an influential figure. I think I'll rent some of his films this weekend.

Gary said...

I'm not sure a finer testament to a man's life could be found. We should all be so lucky to have something like this written about us when we're gone. Thanks for sharing.

ShojinStudios said...

I too will miss him and after reading your story, I can see I was right all along. He was and forever will be the very characters he created. Full of compassion, understanding and love of the underdog. I'd like to think he was one himself, one of us! Thanks for confirming my belief in the the good in all of us and the good John tried to bring out in all of us. I think he succeed it. Now we need to be The Ferris', Breakfast Clubbers and Uncle Buck's to this generation. Here's to the New Breakfast Club! Save me a seat!

Brittany said...

Amazing.

Anonymous said...

I don't know wether to admire you for you tenacity or think you were a rude teenager in your day. I'm sorry you lost your friend and believe me, I think I know how you feel. With the exception of Judy Bloom there is no one that made me feel more understood than John Hughes. Thank for sharing your story!

Tonya said...

Thank you for sharing this glimpse not only into the life of John Hughes, but also into your own life. As you can see from all the comments, your words have meant a lot to those who've read them.

I could wax poetic about how influential his films were for me growing up (they were). Or I could talk about how I'm glad he was the sort of person in real life that I'd hoped he would be as a fan (I am).

However, something else I got from this blog is how gratifying it can be when an adult truly listens to the heartfelt words of a child. The child reaps amazing benefits from the adult who treats her like a person whose thoughts and feelings matter. And the adult gains something valuable in the exchange, as well.

This blog reminds me that all adults have the ability and opportunity to be some child's John Hughes. We all can learn from the kindness of John - we can take the time from our busy grown up pressurized life to stop for a moment here and there and give a child our undivided attention.

In the grand scheme of things, they were "just" a few letters and a package here and there - little bits of his time on occasion. But to a young woman, they meant SO MUCH MORE than that.

Thanks to your blog, John Hughes has influenced me beyond the films with which I grew up and loved so much. He's also reminded me that my time and attention has the potential to matter, that maybe when my time on earth is done someone will look back with fondness and appreciation of the time and attention I gave freely and with affection.

May we all be blessed enough to have a John Hughes in our lives, and may we all be blessed enough to BE a John Hughes to someone else.

Sean said...

Thanks for sharing, Alison.

LA Filmcutter said...

Here is a music video tribute I produced and edited, just because I'm a huge fan! I knew you'd be someone who'd really want to see it.

The original YouTube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5htjWHn3tM

However, the audio has been silenced due to copyright infringement. So here is a follow up link:
http://www.vimeo.com/5997103

I'm not sure how long the video will be there before they delete. So go watch it and download it as soon as you can! I just want to share this with everyone right now. Hope you enjoy it!

I posted a response a little while ago here.

sue laybourn said...

What a lovely piece. A beautiful tribute to a brilliant and perceptive writer.

That's honestly better than any obituary could ever be.

Beautiful. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Anonymous said...

What a great post. It so brings home the point that we don't have a "John Hughes" in Hollywood anymore telling great teenage stories because Hollywood runs great storytellers off. It's impossible to think that in today's world you could make a series of simple teenage movies about kids in an unknown mid-western town and that would mean so much to the current generation. Those days are gone forever.

Allison said...

Alison - Thanks for sharing your memories. What letters to share with your kids or neices/nephews. Just makes me realize again what a great guy he was. Since moving to Chicago I had always hoped to run into him and share how much I loved his work. How much it helped me get through my crappy teenage years. How he gave me role models that were real and flawed, just like me. I had also hoped for a huge comeback. I had no idea he left Hollywood because of John Candy. Even more sad yet insightful.
Thank you so much for sharing.

Kim said...

Oh Alison, I'll have to read this again when I can see through the tears. I've never ever considered myself either typical or special, but I loved those movies. No patronisation, just real stuff.

Your story is amazing. You're one great person. So was he.

X from Ireland

Jan said...

Alison,
I'm from that older generation, the same age as John Hughes, but I enjoyed his films with my young sons, and we all mourn his loss with you. Thank you for sharing your perspective so beautifully; no one could ask for a better tribute.
Jan Pick

Anonymous said...

Hi there, Alison.


I read this and just had to respond, as I found it so moving.

I knew John Hughes only through his films and what you've written does not surprise me at all - his heart and soul were so evident in his work.

Sometimes someone can come into a person's life and it's as if they are absolutely meant to meet.

For a lot of us this doesn't happen.

You had John Hughes.

And he had you.

Thank you for sharing.


Karl

Shaylen Maxwell said...

This is the most beautiful tribute ever, but more so than this, the most amazing story. It speaks so highly of John Hughes as a person, to have corresponded with you as he did, in the ways he did, and that you even spoke on the phone. Amazing. It's so touching and amazing. He will be missed, dearly. He was a very talented man! And I can so imagine the thrill of his calling you. And the trouble with his boss bit, hilarious! This might very well be my favourite post in a blog, ever! : )

vic said...

it is so beautiful that you have shared those letters that he took the time that we can all share this experience together.

Anonymous said...

Seriously, your post really reaches out to the essence of what a generation (if not more) is going through with the loss of such an amazing person far too early. Like you, I was greatly influenced and touched by his work, so much so that I went into the movie industry and today am a producer. I have worked with numerous folks who had worked with John and had heard their amazing stories, but I think yours may be my favorite. Thank you so much for sharing and for reaching out to him in the first place...and calling his boss..LOL...what a special person you were to him.

Patrice Palmer said...

With tears in my eyes, I thank you for being a fine example of both the importance of persistence in reaching your dreams and the fact that one person can make a positive difference. Keep on writing! RIP John Hughes.

Cece said...

Wow....just WOW. What a great tribute! THank you for sharing such special memories with us!

Yvonne Montgomery said...

Thanks so much for sharing this story. I just enjoyed the man's movies; now I have a deeper appreciation of the kind of person he was. My deepest sympathy for your loss.

Robin said...

Alison,

... and now we all hear you.

BHay said...

John Hughes really will be missed. Thank you for sharing such a personal story.

Heidi Carpenter said...

I love John Hughes' movies. It is good to know he was a genuinely kind man. Thank you so much for sharing this.

Shar said...

This is pretty much the most wonderful thing I've ever read. Thank you so much for sharing this.

ROCKNROLLPIMP said...

wonderful post
now i'm crying listening to Roxy music
the world is a better place because of people like John and your self.
thanks

Brandon said...

Alison,

I wish to thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing this. The letters, the thoughts, the experience. John was an amazing person who has had a wonderful influence for an entire generation.

I think I speak for everyone here when I say that, truly, he will be missed.

Sincerely,
Brandon

Valerie said...

I probably shouldn't have read this at work because now I want to cry a little. Thank you so much for sharing all of this with us. It's wonderful and amazing that he really did care about what he did and who it touched.

Beautiful...

Liza said...

Alison, thanks for sharing this special relationship with all of us.

Grace E said...

John Hughes was a man that understood our generation and changed that generation with his talent, wit, and imagination. I think our teenage years would have been less bright without the humour he shared and the insecurities that he brought to the screen, he made us realise that we were not alone in those years and that our feelings we not ours to bear alone.

I had often wondered where he disappeared to and why. Thank you for sharing your story, it must have been amazing to have had the gift of communication with one of the greatest sreen writers to date.

His legacy will always live on. Though his movies were iconically 80's, they will speak to future generations, to make them laugh, cry, to feel understood, and to be cherished. He will be sorely missed.

ashleyludwig said...

I don't know how many comments there will be on this thread by the time I post this, or why posting it really even matters because you have so beautifully said it all. We were children of the 80s. But you, you stepped out and were a voice when the rest of us just watched. Thank you for sharing your heart. You reminded me, as an author, to be true not just to myself, but my audience. Thank you for this...I hope his family reads this and cherishes each comment - to know how much he meant to us. Now I understand why he left...he'll be missed, but never forgotten.

~Ashley

Anonymous said...

How inspiring it is to hear of a man who one has put on such a high pedestal, to actually discover he is worthy of that acclaim.
His work helped me through difficult teenage years in the 80's, and clearly from reading comments in response to your blog this was mirrored by many others.
John - you left a positive mark not just on Alison, but on millions of other fans worldwide,touching a whole generation.
You will be greatly missed.
RIP.

Ricky
(Christchurch, NZ)

P. Hilferty said...

Wow. Just wow. It's nice to know that there are some truly great people in this world. While it is sad he is gone, it is wonderful to know that he will live on in you. He not only made your life better, but this post about how great a person he was just makes me believe that there is actually hope for humanity. I am sorry for your loss.

P. Hilferty said...

Wow. Just wow. It's nice to know that there are some truly great people in this world. While it is sad he is gone, it is wonderful to know that he will live on in you. He not only made your life better, but this post about how great a person he was just makes me believe that there is actually hope for humanity. I am sorry for your loss.

Jeremy said...

That is very touching and a great tribute to the man who impacted so many, including myself, during my childhood. His special impact on you is very... warming.

Thank you for sharing.

Katemcc said...

Allison, are you still making movies/documentaries? could you please make this into a movie? it's a very very wonderful story, and it's a micro version of what made his movies so wonderful--that someone should listen. thank you to your teenage self for having the ballsy audacity to write those letters in the first place.

Tara said...

Alison
Thank you for sharing these pivotal moments from your life. This is the first time I have read your blog and I feel like I know you. Your writing is amazing and I can see why Mr. Hughes was drawn to you. I too was so thankful for his movies for making me feel "ok" with those akward things about us that, as children, we are ashamed of and as adults we can celebrate. Too know that someone so successful and talented was willing to leave it all behind to put his children first, just makes me love him even more. Thanks so much for sharing!

Nancy said...

Alison,

What a beautiful blog post - thank you for sharing such a beautifully written memory complete with pictures. This is gorgeously written. In high school and college I was pen pals with Mr. Rogers for a few years -- nothing nearly as deep as your relationship with John Hughes but it's nice to know that people who "make it" take the time to touch base with humanity and stay human. Thank you so much for sharing!

thepostess said...

This was a great tribute. After the first 200 or so comments I stopped reading, as they all express the same thing.

This man gave a voice to many who felt they did not have one in the "disposable 80's". For that, many of us are thankful. His movies will always remain some of my very favorites, because they were not just for us, they were about 'us'.

RIP Mr. Hughes. and thanks again.

h said...

Beautiful story, Alison.

N said...

Wow, Alison...

I watched and loved John Hughes' movies all through the 80's during those formative teen years... still have copies of them on video/DVD, as well as most of the soundtracks.

Thank you ever so much for sharing a personal side of someone who seemed larger than life. And now that I've read your post, I find that he was far more amazing as a friend and a family man than his larger-than-life successful Hollywood image ever could have conveyed.

Thank you again for sharing this... it has touched me deeply.

NewArms said...

First of all, my condolences to you and to all of us, for losing a great man and a great writer.

His movies have filled and coloured my life and to this day, at 35, rank among my most favourite of movies.

Second of all, WOW. I am deeply impressed by your pissed off letter: that is quite possibly amongst the most awesome things anyone has ever done. My hat is off to you and thank you so much for sharing this! :)

Jeremy,
Portland, OR

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your story with us. I loved his films when I was growing up, and it is soooo nice to hear that he was such a nice guy to a young girl! My condolences to his family and loved ones. He made so many of us smile with his films, and will be very missed.

NewArms said...

First of all, my condolences to you and to all of us, for losing a great man and a great writer.

His movies have filled and coloured my life and to this day, at 35, rank among my most favourite of movies.

Second of all, WOW. I am deeply impressed by your pissed off letter: that is quite possibly amongst the most awesome things anyone has ever done. My hat is off to you and thank you so much for sharing this! :)

Jeremy,
Portland, OR

Sarah Buttenwieser said...

I loved this piece & linked to it on my blog Standing in the Shadows at the valleyadvocate.com

http://bit.ly/2dcpQ

kate said...

thanks for sharing Alison, I just heard you on wnyc.

I think it's incredibly daring of you to write a mentor and ask them to be your pal, I couldn't have done it in the 80's or now. When I read about how John encouraged you to write in High School I nearly cried, ugh why are all english teachers such ruiners! I can imagine he was your strength back then before you could find your own. I had a similar tragedy happen to me in English. I loved to write but lacked the proper skills. I know now if I'd had one person who believed in me then, who knows, right? So now we know this is the nebula of a Hughes movie. His movies personify the one true believer in mixed up teenager "you". I am happy to find you and your story because now I also know John, the man behind all my favorite teenage movies, was a believer in people too, totally cool. Thanks John!

Anonymous said...

I was pointed to your blog from a Facebook posting, and have shared it with a number of friends. I believe John Hughes defined "our generation" as much as Michael Jackson, at least, and your blog entry just verifies that. Thank you for sharing this personal story with all of us.

Ayoub said...

Thank you for sharing this amazing, touching, chapter of your life...

Byron the afro-filmviewer said...

A friend sent me the link to this entry and I'm glad he did. A very touching piece.

Superlatives are overused these days esp over the internet, but I can honestly say that John Hughes was a true voice of a generation.

The scene that sums Hughes up for me doesn't have any dialogue but captures more energy than a hundred of its so called imitators.

Ferris Bueller dancing to the Beatles Twist and Shout. In a world where films are filled with dialouge that goes on forever and says nothing, a filmmaker creates a scene that says everything it needs to about not only the character...but the WHOLE FILM without saying a word.

I once read that 115+ movies are released a month (in the uk) and I found myself wondering how hard it is to get one made, seen and to have people actually like it.

Hughes transcended this ten fold. His films will be passed down to younger generations and enjoyed for years to come. There's not a lot of films that can do that.

Nap Warden said...

I can't thank you enough for sharing this. I poured over the Trib and Sun Times today and both called him a film maker who became "stuck in a rut" and left the business.

I'm so glad I found your post and know the real story. What an amazing one it is!

I posted about him as well
http://www.napwarden.com/2009/08/dont-you-forget-about-him.html

Thanks so much for sharing this story.

Megan said...

I'm not sure if you'll even be able to rake through all of these comments, or if it means anything to reiterate what HUNDREDS before me have said to in the last few days... but, thank you for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I keep reading and re-reading this post. I'm as amazed at the humanity of J. Hughes as I am with your persistence and discretion over the years. You both are special people -- each of whom have touched me in ways you'll never know.

Keep writing,

L

Munchanka said...

Thanks for sharing, Alison. When I was in college, I started a correspondence with one of my heroes, illustrator James Gurney. It's always inspiring to find out that your heroes are as kind as they are talented.

Carl said...

Writing should elicit emotion. Make you feel like you are part of the story.

I teared up. John did well.

drew said...

such an amazing story. thank you for sharing this alison. this is easily more touching than anything else i have read about mr. hughes. it really gives an incredible perspective into who he really was. we hear such horror stories from hollywood about how big of jerks some people can be. it's refreshing to read something like this and know that he was truly as sincere as his films were. thanks again.

Celeste said...

Thank you for posting this. It really shows the John Hughes was a real human, who really did get who he was writing for.

I was a bit too young for the films when they first came out, but they still had the same impact for me a few years later when I hit my teenage years.

The Breakfast Club is still my favourite film, and my boyfriend and I got together 13 years ago when we realised we could both quote most of the film. Until that point we were really unsure of each other.

Today is a sad day.

Carrie said...

This is a beautiful tribute. What a kind man he was and how sweet you are in sharing this.

Anonymous said...

Alison, I think your communication with John spoke on behalf of all of us who were teenagers gaining confidence and support from his movies as they showed us we were not alone. I don't mind telling you I have a tear in my eye and offer my sincere thanks to you for sharing this experience with us. Alexis x

Joe said...

Thank you for posting this. It reaffirms my belief that John Hughes was a magnificent person. He will be sorely missed.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry for your personal loss. I never had the chance to know him, except through his movies.

Juggle Jane said...

Thank you for sharing this story. It confirms everything I thought about the kind of man John Hughes was.

He really was the voice of a generation.

Holly said...

Lovely.

slothwerkz said...

That's such a fabulous story, I wish I had written to him!
Bless you and you have all your Ferris merch to remember him by, that's priceless!

John said...

Alison:

Thank you for sharing this.

It's a fine tribute to a kind, decent and wonderful man.

Rest in Peace, John. The world needs more like you and will be poorer for your absence.

Anonymous said...

Alison, that is very nice. I'm trying my damnest not to tear up right now. Now, if you'll excuse me I got The Breakfast Club that needs a watching again.

Angela said...

Beautiful

Anonymous said...

SAVE FERRIS!!! R.I.P. JOHN! TKS FOR THE FUN!

Guitarman5150 said...

Alison,

I'm so glad you shared this with us. I was shocked to hear of John's passing to. I as a teen loved his movies as well.

You got to see a side of him none of us as the millions of other fans got to see. You should consider yourself very lucky.

I think John would be very proud of what you wrote about him. It was done very well. I think he gave you great advice, "believe in yourself," I don't think I could have said it better myself.

Thank you again for shareing this with us. I am sorry for your loss and for the Hughes family as well.

Tyler said...

Wow, Alison. That is so beautiful! His comments to you on your writing that many years ago helped develop such a lovely tribute to him in his death. I hope the sons he left Hollywood for get to see this and know what an interesting dad they had.

Funny Girl said...

I can not think of the 80's thus my high school years and not think of a John Hughes movie...My favorite is The Breakfast Club followed by Sixteen Candles as a close second.

High School, and the 80's would not be what it is to me today without John Hughes.

Thank you for sharing!

cavalaxis said...

Dear Alison, Thank you for taking the time to write that fan letter, for reaching out to touch someone who we all assumed would never have the time to talk to us. Thank you for telling him for us how much he was loved and how much his art meant to us. Thank you for doing that for us, for keeping him from being cynical like so many in the business can be. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your memories of John. You're in my thoughts tonight. Thank you. ~Lynn

Anonymous said...

I loved reading that a kid wanted to make their views known to "powerful" person and that low and behold, behind the curtain was not a Wizard, but a guy, a really nice guy. I'm going to share this with my kids. They need to know that people are just people, and they can be accessible, and that every now and again, you hit upon one that actually gives a hoot.
Thanks!

Mark Linsenbardt said...

There are few things that a person can do in life that matter more, than to make a difference in the life of another.
I think more of the man today, than I did yesterday.

What a wonderful story, thank you for sharing. Perhaps one day, someone will have the sense to write a story like this, and make a film of it.

Julie said...

Alison,

As I know you are hurting over the loss of an influential part of your life thank you for taking the time to share a side of him that so few got to know.

Sincerely,
Julie

Beaver Lover said...

Quit for John Candy eh? It sure seems like John Hughes was a man of great character. I've missed his films all these years.

Carrie said...

Alison, I can't improve upon the other comments - it is a lovely story, beautifully written. I can only say that other people should read it. I think it would make a great "Lives" column in the Sunday New York Times magazine. I really think you should submit it to lives@nytimes.com. I hope you do. Thank you so much for sharing it with all of us.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful.

Thank you so much for sharing this.

Ben Esler,
Melbourne, Australia.

Funny Girl said...

I can't think of the 80's and thus my childhood and not think of a John Hughes movie....My favorite is The Breakfast Club followed by Sixteen Candles as a really close second.

Thank you God for John Hughes! He was a real talent who brought and continues to bring joy, and he was a also a really nice man.

Thank you for sharing, Allison!

Nick said...

Wow, thank you for sharing this with all of us, Alison. I'm sure that many of us could only hope to regularly correspond with one of our heroes the way that you did. It also speaks to the late Mr. Hughes's character in putting the thoughts and reactions of his fan base first. You both seem like terrific people, and I was glad to read your story.

Anne said...

Your story sounds like a movie John Hughes himself would have written. Teenage emotion, unbelievable events, and a moving ending.

If this were a movie, I'd want to see it. Thank you for writing this. And thank you to John Hughes for doing what he did. He impacted so many of us in a good way.

ms. c. said...

wow. i posted a shit piece on hughes (humorous, though i am a big fan) and am glad i got to read this wonderful one, which gives so much insight as to what kind of person--not filmmaker, not hollywood star--sensitive and righteous, hughes was. surely everyone who reads this will leave your blog missing him more. thanks.

Brian said...

Thank you thank you thank you.

I can't tell you how much I didn't think about the news when I first heard it. I'm quite numb to the news these days.

But to hear how someone connected with another human being, from one medium into another and then develop a long term relationship, it's very special.

thank you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing that eloquent memory of your mentor and friend. What a beautiful tribute to an incredible man. John's movies made me feel like it was okay to be different. His work was brilliant and beautiful, and changed my life for the better.

~ Sharon.

Jean-Baptiste said...

Hi. I didn't know your blog until I saw the entry on Major Spoilers, and I don't usually leave comments (even though I should), but this post left me no choice. It's beautiful, it's sad, it's moving...I'm really sorry for your loss. And I'm really sorry John Hughes died.

I'm sorry every time I hear someone died, but this is different. Hey, it's John Hughes. I didn't know him until very recently, and I knew nothing of his movies back when I was a teenager, but I still love his work. Breakfast Club really blew me away : a whole movie with five people in a room just talking ? I could not believe how great it was.

He wasn't just a great artist, he was a really great guy. I just learned that from this post. I wish I could see more movies that remind me of him.

I'm very sorry I can't write something that would help you better. I'll just say that John Hughes was great. And you are great, too. I don't know you, I don't know your blog, but I don't care. You are a great person. I know it, just from this post.

theresab said...

Lovely, well said. Amazing. You're lucky to have counted him a friend.

Little Ms Blogger said...

This was a wonderful, heartfelt tribute to a man who bought laughs and smiles to so many.

Thank you for sharing your personal relationship with us.

Dingo said...

I was a big John Hughes fan in the '80's. After reading your tribute to him just makes me a bigger fan. John was/is definitely better than Hollywood. And he left on his terms, not theirs. He left before he became jaded or drug addicted.

/ What the hell are you bitchin' about? I gotta sleep under some Chinaman named after a duck's dork.

the rebel agenda said...

Thanks so much for sharing. It's a fantastic, sweet post.

Bond said...

I am a 55 year old man who enjoyed the movies of Mr. Hughes for their honesty and insight.

And even though they were made years after my teen years, I saw my teen years in them and the years after college in The Breakfast Club.

Thank you for sharing your relationship and I admire that you held t private until now.

Geo said...

Maybe you'll be inspired to write a book or a movie yourself about this special friendship. What a gift!

rachel said...

thank you for this post. john hughes really did illustrate an entire generation. i almost feel like his films are my home movies and i will be forever grateful to him for that. this was a treasure to read this morning.

karen said...

thank you so much for sharing this. and i'm glad you became his friend and let him know that there were people out there who really thought the world of his work.

Clay Elmore said...

Great story. Thanks for sharing it with us. :)

ms. c. said...

also, this is really inspirational. i wrote a fan letter to jon stewart and have not sent it because i don't know where to send it to. but now i'm going to find out, dammit. thanks, abf.

Shari said...

To be a teenager and have someone like John Hughes to guide you along is tremendous. Cherish that.
This in itself could have been the next John Hughes teenage film, how ironic.

Sarah Fodey said...

A friend of mine posted a link to your story on Facebook and I just read it. I am in tears over what you wrote. I don't know whether to be more impressed with you or John Hughes for the character you both displayed over the years.
What a fantastic experience and story that you own. I work in film & tv and if I were you, I'd weave this very moving story into a script someday.
Thank you again, truly.
Sarah

TheSteffer said...

Alison, this is extraordinary and thank you so much for sharing. The other night when i was sitting in the movie theater watching trailers before The Hangover started..I was shocked and saddened to see them all of the horror movie genre..and geared towards the teenager. And I thought..where are the John Hughes films for these kids? I was saddened by the fact that my sister who is 12 years younger, never saw a John Hughes film on a "movie night" out with her friends. I am saddened that she doesn't know what it was like to rush out the next day to the mall and grab the soundtrack on casette.
I told someone today that John Hughes was to the 80's, what Mike Nichols was to the 60's. They both used feeling and emotion, instead of special effects to get us excited and care about a movie. Your blog confirmed my suspicions of why he disappeared from Hollyweird. His heart was too good for it. God Bless, and know that he may not be here physically anymore, but he is in your heart...and will always be there, to help that heart light up with joy in this journey called life...

Steven said...

Thank you so much for sharing this with the world.

Anonymous said...

Wow...I was just thinking about how I write to everyone that writes to me, and I think that everyone who does art that doesn't is a total piece of trash...I was getting up to 100 a day at one point, and I still answered everyone and still care about everyone that cares to tell me about their life. We're all alone together in this motherfucker.

Nicole said...

What a lucky girl to have such and amazing man as your friend and mentor! Thank you for sharing this wonderful story!

Anonymous said...

death is not a loss, but life sure is a gift.

Emilie said...

Thank you for sharing this amazing story. I'm so glad to know he was so generous and supportive to you and respected your feedback so much. But it makes sense, when you look at his movies. This touched me a lot.

Neb said...

Thanks so much for sharing your experiences. Your drive and gumption inspire me, and your accounts of Mr. Hughes give me faith that there are still some involved in "the business" who aren't egomaniacs. I've met a few of the good ones. Wish I could have met John.

inkyhack said...

Wonderful post. Thank you for sharing.

fashionisdanger said...

This gives me hope that there are real people in Hollywood. As you'll see (on our blog) my friend and I also loved John Hughes' movies and how they helped us feel like we weren't alone in high school.

I still am amazed that he was your penpal. Cool

fashionisdanger said...

This gives me hope that there are real people in Hollywood. As you'll see (on our blog) my friend and I also loved John Hughes' movies and how they helped us feel like we weren't alone in high school.

I still am amazed that he was your penpal. Cool

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your special relationship with John Hughes. He truly did understand our generation and he will be missed.

Mi ch ele said...

wow. this is amazing to read! Not because of who he was really, but because of the fact that no matter who he was in life he took the time to be there for a stranger. often times i ignore who the "hollywood" people are in RL because i feel they are on another planet in RL. i love their movies, but the people... i would never even try to reach out to them because they seem... well, un-human to me, cold and unreachable.

this makes me think that perhaps they are not all as out there and distant as i think they are. maybe they aren't always only thinking of only themselves and their career. maybe i misjudge an entire group because of what i have seen in a select few.

you had an amazing experience, thank you for sharing it with all of us who are reading it here.

*peace*

satanslilsunbeam said...

What a beautiful post. Thank you so much for sharing this. I think he would have absolutely loved it. So many people I know were destroyed over Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett, but this death is the one that really got to me. He had such a huge impact on my life and my outlook as an outsider. He may never have had gay characters, but as a queer weird teenager growing up in rural Kansas, his films spoke to me and lent me the courage to be who I was.

Thank you again...

MA said...

Thank you so much for sharing this. In the last 24 hours I've reflected a lot on what John Hughes meant to me and more than anything else he, like Mr. Rogers before him, encouraged me to be mySelf. I was young enough that I think his movies made it easier to be weird and for that I am eternally grateful. Your perspective was icing on the cake. I'm mourning with you. Thank you again for sharing this!

luvlyloops said...

Thanks for sharing! I'm really glad you did. It is great to know that John Hughes was a great person and you humanized him by sharing this story with the world. I, like many other Gen X'ers, will remember him by watching his films this weekend. It was great you were able to get that close to him.
Thanks again Alison! RIP John Hughes =(

Bethany said...

What a wonderful friendship/mentorship to find out about a writer who touched us all. Thanks for sharing that the man wass as good--if not better--than his films!

Ender said...

thanks
we never forget

Matt Metzgar said...

Wow, what an incredible story! T

Thank you for sharing this. It means a lot to John Hughes fans.

Heather said...

I love this. Thank you so much for sharing such a personal memory. My sincerest condolences to you on the loss of your wonderful friend.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your story.

Anonymous said...

A product of the 80's and heavily influenced by John's movies (my 16th bday cake was in the middle of a dining room table, and Jr. Prom dress hugely inspired by Molly's character in Pretty in Pink and yes I made mine too)... recently a group of 7 of us from high school reunited, 4 states from coast to coast, for my 40th birthday in July. We were from opposite 'corners of campus', yet came together and walked away forever changed, forever tightly knit and cornerstones in the lives of one another. We ended up calling ourselves "The Breakfast Club". We were all so sad to hear of his death, but all so thankful to read this article. He was the real deal, and it came out in his characters and his movies. Thank you for sharing with the rest of us regular teens who grew up quoting and adoring his movies, and trying on some of it all for size, even at 40.

Nokorola said...

What a wonderful story. Thank you for sharing it.

Stephen B. said...

Thank you! I've never personally been in touch with a writer or celebrity this way. A great story that makes it all human, showing a side of John Hughes like this - he's going to be missed.

Marshall said...

I just heard you on NPR and found your blog.

Thank you for sharing your history with John Hughes.

He will be missed.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing such a wonderful story. I heard the piece on NPR - your blog is even more touching. (I'm crying too).

Woo said...

Dang! I can't believe I had forgotten how big an impact his movies had on me. Thank you so much for posting this and reminding me how much his movies meant to me. I didn't realize he was only 59...but of course it all makes sense when I think about it. I'm sorry for the pain of your loss. I wept as I read your memories of him. Thanks again.

Andrea said...

What a beautiful, touching story. Thank you for sharing this with the world, to give us some personal insight on what a remarkable person John Hughes was.

T Riley said...

Thanks for sharing such a great story. It means a lot for him to be remembered that way. He was such an inspiration to my childhood and my life:)

Rebecca said...

I am so touched to read so many letters with sentiments that mirror my own. My 14th birthday party (in 1984) would not have been the same if I hadn't been able to watch Sixteen Candles 658306598 times. My prom heartbreak would have never been the same without feeling a kinship with Andy and her own. I remember dancing in the aisles (for the 10th time) to Twist and Shout as Ferris danced in downtown Chicago. So many memories that today are touching my own 12 year old daughter, and soon my son. Thank you for your post, and thank you John Hughes. I honestly do not know how I could have gotten through adolescence without you. God bless you.

Anonymous said...

Alison,

Not to be redundant or anything--but thank you for sharing this with me. I can see he has had a huge impact on you.

I have (very regrettably) not seen any of John Hughes' movies -- partially because I grew up overseas and partially because I have been ignorant in this regard.

I plan on having a John Hughes Movie Marathan this weekend or the next and you will definitely be in my thoughts as my inspirer.

This brought tears to my eyes. As, it did to yours when you wrote it.

Thank you

Frank Rosquin said...

The Breakfast Club and Ferris Bueller's Day Off are 2 of the most defining films of my youth. John Hughes will be missed, but his legacy will live on. My kids, and many many more will watch his contributions with delight...

*jen* said...

I heard your piece on NPR this afternoon...I had just pulled up to my house but sat in the car b/c I'd been waiting the entire ride home since the first mention of it. Then I wrote your blog address down on a piece of scrap paper. I'm so glad I did. This is a lovely entry and was very touching to read. Thanks for sharing.

Freddie Anzalone said...

holy shit, i didn't knew john hughes died,
thanks for sharing your story

T2 said...

I am a 55 year old guy who has a young pen pal, Sara. She is the daughter of a close friend and we've been writing to one another for many years. My wife and I were not blessed with children and I have imagined that Sara is the kind of daughter we would have brought into this world if given the chance.

I have seen her letters "grow" from the scratchy, rambling, disjointed and generally mis-spelled gobs of words to wonderfully eloquent letters.

She is in college now and our discussions range from the mundane events of the weekend to the imporantance found in the election of a president.

She has expressed her appreciation for those letters I sent, but I never let her forget how important her letters to me have been for these last 8 years.

I have saved every single one.

I imagine that Mr. Hughes felt the same way I do when thinking about his pen pal.

Dore said...

This is an incredible story - I loved his writing, and that you were to receive it in letters as pen pals makes you an incredibly lucky person, who he obviously respected. I hope enough people realize what Hollywood lost - he was a great writer.

Fine Life Folk said...

I could have just read in a news somewhere how and why John disappeared from the limelight, but I know that it's just going to be words. Yours, however, were life. Thank you, sincerely, for sharing what he shared with you. John would be so proud of you.

Michelle Beckham-Corbin said...

Alison,

Thank you so much for sharing this personal story of your friendship with John. It is evident from the correspondence that you both had a great impact on each other. I grew up with John's movies and loved every one. I didn't really know much about him as a person, so I appreciate you giving us a glimpse into the man that he was.

Michelle

LLH said...

Thank you.

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