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Los Angeles Times - May 18, 1982; Section V, p. 1

Friars: They Come to Praise Cary

by Jody Jacobs
(submitted by Barry Martin - Thanks Barry!)

NEW YORK - Nobody had trouble saying good things about the honoree at Sunday night's Friar's testimonial dinner at the Waldorf-Astoria.  Cary Grant is a world-class act all by himself.

Frank Sinatra, the show business-oriented Friars' abbot since 1975, and the evening's master of ceremonies, called Grant a "Cockney baby," referring to his birth in Bristol, England.  And almost everybody from George Burns to Sinatra mentioned that Grant had once been known as Archibald Leach.  As they went through their numbers Grant smiled and shook his head.  The program book - fat and profitable - showed pictures of Leach-Grant from baby to superstar and a lot of highlights in between.

Pinned in a Corner

How did Grant feel about it all?  Well, early on, as he was pinned in a corner by media in the hotel's Jade Room during the pre-dinner reception, he admitted, "Scared to death is how I feel."  Much, much later, as Sinatra was winding up the event by singing Sammy Cahn's special lyrics to "The Most Beautiful Man in the World" (Grant, of course), he was tearful - and joyful as well.

"I tear up very easily," he confessed before receiving the Friars' trophy and a Corum watch.  "I find myself tearful at happy things."  It's the privilege of the elderly, he alleged, still wiping away the tears with his big handkerchief, to be able to show such emotion publicly.

Reluctant to Accept

He had been reluctant to accept "this honor" until he realized "all the good that comes from these dinners," he said.  In this case proceeds were going to quite a few organizations, among them the Motion Picture and Television Fund, the Children's Diabetes Foundation in Denver and the Jennifer Jones Foundation for Mental Health.

Joining in the tributes were 68 friends and associates who sat on ... [missing continued story on page 4]

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