Appreciating all that makes America special

Actor: Jimmy Stewart

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I almost met Jimmy Stewart, once. Okay, I had absolutely no chance of actually meeting him, but he did pass by me within a few feet.

It was at the Virginia Film Festival, back when it packed some punch. I went with my friends Shawn and Sandy Murray to see an incredible double feature: It’s a Wonderful Life followed by To Kill a Mockingbird. Gregory Peck was there to discuss Mockingbird, but the highlight was seeing Jimmy Stewart talk about one of my favorite films. It was an amazing afternoon for a film lover.

Seldom does one actor appear in so many all-time classic films. Mr. Smith Goes to WashingtonRear WindowThe Philadelphia StoryRope…Anatomy of a Murder. Ninety-nine movies, according to And each time that distinctive voice, that guy-next-door demeanor, that winning personality shone through.

No, I never got to meet Jimmy Stewart. But I knew him, all right. Knew him like a best friend.

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  1. Love Jimmy Stewart. We watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” every Christmas. I saw “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington” last year and I think it ought to be required viewing for members of Congress. “Shenandoah” is good too. I love the scene when Doug McClure comes to ask Jimmy Stewart if he can marry his daughter, Jenny. JS asks if he likes her and DM says “I just said I love her” Says JS: “No, no. You just said you loved her. There’s some difference between lovin’ and likin’. When I married Jennie’s mother, I didn’t love her – I liked her… I liked her a lot. I liked Martha for at least three years after we were married and then one day it just dawned on me I loved her. I still do. You see, Sam, when you love a woman without likin’ her, the night can be long and cold, and contempt comes up with the sun.” One of my favorite movie quotes.

  2. Liberty Valance.