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Listener Letters: The Rat Pack

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Listeners tell us stories of fated encounters and strong women. Weekend America host Bill Radke talks with Sirkka Howes to clear up a listener question from our Oct. 20 show. The listener wrote in to call attention to the fact that Shirley MacLaine--not Joey Bishop--was the last remaining member of the Rat Pack. Howes is a reigning Rat Pack expert.

Letters from Listeners

I know everybody, including Weekend America, is heading their obituaries and stories on Joey Bishop with "Last of the Rat Pack," but my understanding is that Shirley MacLaine, who shared the screen with the boys in a couple of Rat Pack movies, was the only woman allowed into the sacred innner circle and was considered a Rat Pack member.

As I believe Ms. MacLaine is still with us, perhaps she is the "Last of the Rat Pack." No offense intended to Mr. Bishop.

Susan Ingram
Baltimore, Md.

On Saturday, I was in my car on the way to the marina for a boat cruise, listening to the Nanci Olesen "Swimming Until November" story on the radio. I was very touched and moved about her sister Amy's brain cancer. While on the boat cruise, a woman wearing a scarf on her head was pointed out to me. It was explained to me by Phyllis that this woman had brain cancer and she was wearing the scarf because of hair loss.

I'm thinking this is an amazing coincidence to hear about two women with brain cancer in the same day. As the story unfolds, I'm hearing more and more similarities to Amy's story. Finally, I ask for the woman's name. The last name didn't sound familiar to me but then she said her first name was Amy!?! I asked if Amy had a sister named Nanci who swims in Lake Harriet. Phyllis didn't know about the Lake Harriet part but she did say Amy's sister was Nanci. Phyllis brought me over to meet Amy and sure enough, it was the very same Amy I just heard about on the radio!! What are the chances of that happening? Still gives me goosebumps thinking about it. Amy looked beautiful and seemed to be enjoying the warm sun and the boat cruise that day. I wish Amy, Nanci and their families the very best and many more years together.

Madame Oday
Maplewood, Minn.

What's with the Police Chief wanting MEN to be on the non-violent patrol? And what's with your female reporter not questioning the apparent exclusion of women from this worthwhile endeavor? Did you notice that in the story that followed about the dinner party intruder, it was a WOMAN who began defusing the situation by suggesting that the gunman change his focus from her guest to her?

Christina Purdy
Seattle, Wash.


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