What did comic Dickie Henderson and American film director Blake Edwards do to help earthbound colleagues?

1 01 2011

My work with spirit rescue could be described as ‘fishing for lost souls’ and one such excursion netted some important personalities  who floundered on the periphery between heaven and earth.  An incredible series of events culminated in the rescue of three very talented and creative souls who have left their mark in history….

Firstly, on the night of 12th December 2010 I received a courtesy call from someone who had passed safely to the other side on 22nd September 1985.  His name was London born comedian and entertainer Dickie Henderson (1922-1985) and he wore a nice smile, a dinner jacket and a ‘dickie’ bow and said that he used to appear at the London Palladium.  After throwing me this bait he disappeared again, leaving me to fish for answers!

As Michael and I were due to drive to Cornwall the next day, I did not have time to ponder on the meaning of his visit across the veil and intended to do some more earthly research on him once we had returned the following week, as my parents home does not have internet access.  In the meantime, over breakfast at their house I noticed the headline on my father’s Daily Telegraph newspaper, which read  ‘Blake Edwards dies, aged 88’.  Apparently he was the screenwriter, director and producer of the Pink Panther films and Breakfast at Tiffany’s and had died from pneumonia.  (He also happened to have been married to Julie Andrews for 41 years – the heroine of my favourite film The Sound of Music!)  Naturally, I picked up my dowser, just to check that his spirit had risen safely – as happens naturally in 99 percent of cases – and it had. 

‘Do you have anything you’d like to say to the public?‘ I asked him discretely (through telepathy) and his short, playful reply came back:

“Dog-gun, Deputy Dawg!” and somewhere in my memory box the latter two words reminded me of a cartoon character from my childhood, but again I would need to do some more research on this strange message!  Once home I found that Dictionery.com gives the origin of dawg-gon or doggone as ‘1850-55 Americanism; perhaps from dog on it! – a euphemistic alteration of God damned’! For instance ‘well I’ll be doggoned’ as in being confounded…’a doggone fool’…

I googled Deputy Dawg only to find that the prolific Hollywood voice actor for this character of the film of the same name, Dayton Allen (1919-2004) was just waiting for me to hook him in…. “I loved my work too much!” he revealed (and therefore stayed around too long on the earth plane and got himself stuck!) –“Doggone fool!’  Interestingly, some of his films included titles Men of Yesterday (1936) – (now reunited with them!) – Things are Looking Up (1935) – (that’s the way to go!) – and Golden Dawn (1930) – (where he now found himself reawakened!)…

Just to remind myself of those favourite childhood episodes, I read that Deputy Dawg would pal around with other characters Muskie and Vince just as often as he would lock them up in the Jailhouse, and (appropriately!) the trio would often engage in their favourite pastime, ‘fishin’ for catfish’!   The central location for many of the yarns is the Jailhouse – again another metaphor for being stuck on the earthplane, unable to have your freedom to fly home to the light!  

Researching Blake Edwards’ Pink Panther film, I found the role was originated by, and is most closely associated with, Peter Sellers (already resting in peace).  The notable theme music to the Pink Panther was famously composed by the noted composer and arranger, Henry Mancini (1924-1994)- and guess what…he was a big fish just waiting to be hooked too!  Here was another soul who had been reluctant to leave his life behind and therefore become stuck here.  “I just could not finish my score!” he saidI found the following information: ‘Mancini collaborated extensively with Blake Edwards- firstly on TV’s Peter Gunn (1958), then on  Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961), which won him two Oscars’…  His daughters were educated at Millfield School, Somerset’…(This is amazing as my own father was once offered a job at this school!)  ‘The compositions for which he is best known include ‘Moon River’ (a very emotive song that follows me everywhere!) – and he is often accredited with composing the music for the Peanuts movies…(Again, my children have had a great fondness for Snoopy since their early childhood.) Appropriately, one of his earliest scores was for Mr Lucky (1959) – and he certainly has been, thanks to his friend Blake Edwards, as he would have remained earthbound forever and a day!)

Back to the courtesy call from Dickie Henderson, I discovered that he not only performed at the London Palladium but was actually a guest compere of this British West End variety show Sunday Night at the London Palladium (1955 to 1967, with a brief revival in 1973 and 1974.)

“I really enjoyed my work there!” he said as I typed this – and joked…”Ask Brucie when he’s going to take his hairpiece off…(and he’ll say) ‘Bloomin’ cheek!'” (Bruce Forsythe was a regular compere of this same show, from 1958–1960 and 1961, so perhaps this comment has some personal relevance?)   But the reason for Dickie’s visit was to open the curtains for his father Dick Henderson Senior (1891-1958) to leave a rather portly gentleman who politely removed  his bowler hat and bowed as he was lifted from the stage of life to join his son in the wings!

“It was all worthwile,” he called back, “hang on in there!” (referring to my mission to publish these revelations worldwide, a burden of love that I pray will be shed sometime in 2011!)

ps As I have shown in many of my Blogs, Spirit has a great sense of humour!  To celebrate our daughter’s birthday we went to the Lake District on the 28th December and after a slap up meal eleven of us slipped en-masse into the pub next door (which was, naturally, haunted and later that night I cleared fishermen and gigalos, amongst 100’s of other ‘locals’ seeking the light!)  It wasn’t until the following day that we walked past this pub and (‘Dog-gun, Deputy Dawg!) look what I saw on this pub sign on the wall!

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