Hon­or­ing TV, stage star Nolan

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - ARKANSAS - JEN­NIFER CHRISTMAN Email: jchrist­[email protected] on­line.com

In All My Chil­dren’s Pine Val­ley, she was Donna Beck. And then, through mar­riage, she was Donna Tyler … and then Donna Cort­landt … and then Donna Sago … and then back to Donna Tyler again.

But in El Do­rado — where the soap star lived with her real-life lead­ing man, hus­band Robert C. Nolan — she was Candice Ear­ley Nolan.

Nolan, who bat­tled mul­ti­ple sys­tems at­ro­phy, died Jan. 31 at age 68. A me­mo­rial cel­e­bra­tion of life ser­vice will be held at 11 a.m. Satur­day at El Do­rado’s First United Methodist Church.

She mar­ried Robert in 1992, and, ac­cord­ing to her obit­u­ary, the cou­ple “met dur­ing an un­planned ‘kismet’ mo­ment eight years ear­lier, by chance, on an air­plane, and he im­me­di­ately and for­ever fell un­der her spell.”

And af­ter years in Cal­i­for­nia and New York, the ac­tress — who was born in Fort Hood, Texas, and grew up in Law­ton, Okla. — fell un­der Arkansas’ spell.

“Prior to their mar­riage, Candi chose to re­tire from the screen and stage and move to El Do­rado, Arkansas, where, in her words, she be­gan the best role she had in her en­tire life. She brought enor­mous joy into (Robert’s) life, and his fam­ily’s lives. All who knew her quickly fell un­der the charm, beauty, in­tel­li­gence and sweet­ness of her be­ing,” her obit­u­ary said.

Her singing voice, de­scribed as a “fouroc­tave col­oratura so­prano,” would help her win Miss Law­ton and first run­ner-up to Miss Ok­la­homa, as well as land lead­ing roles in San Fran­cisco and Broad­way pro­duc­tions of mu­si­cals in­clud­ing Hair, Je­sus Christ Su­per­star, Grease and South Pa­cific.

Still, she was best known for her 18 years on ABC’s pop­u­lar day­time drama.

Ac­tress Liz Vassey — who starred on All My Chil­dren from 1989 to 1991 as Donna’s step­daugh­ter and who moved to New York with her mother from Florida for the role — re­mem­bers Candice be­ing moth­erly to­ward her.

Vassey says, “I was 16 years old, and Candi was pretty much the first per­son I met on set. … Candi was so wel­com­ing and so lov­ing … and she opened her heart and opened her apart­ment, and she just took us in like she was part of the fam­ily.”

She adds, “I was a kid when I met Candi. … I be­lieve that you learn from peo­ple in those sit­u­a­tions, and you learn how to act and you learn how to treat other peo­ple. I’m for­ever grate­ful for her kind­ness, and I never for­got it.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.