You know how it is with kids, right? Was there ever a kid born who didn’t want every puppy or kitten that they ever saw? (I have a hard enough time turning my back on a puppy!!!!) There is just something about kids and pets. Personally, I think pets have lots of benefits, not just for kids, but adults, too. It has been shown that they lower blood pressure, reduce stress, and that in fact, because they are, well, often rather dirty, that kids get increased antibodies from being around them! Oh, and let’s not forget the loneliness that they fill and the love that they give! (OK, maybe goldfish or hamsters aren’t too great at that, but puppies and I suppose, kittens, are!)
At the Global Winter Wonderland, one of my granddaughters came across a creature she’d love to have as a pet. I managed to get a picture of her shaking its paw. Did her mom and dad let her take it home? Not a chance! But in this case, I couldn’t blame them. I’d have said “No!”, too!
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1985, Rick Nelson died in plane crash in De Kalb, Texas, on December 31, 1985.
The teenage Ricky Nelson launched his pop career in 1957 by picking up a guitar and singing at the end of an episode of The Adventures of Ozzie And Harriet, creating a model for pop-music stardom that inspired hundreds of imitators in the decades that followed. But Ricky Nelson had something that so many other actors who failed as pop stars didn’t: musical talent. Having the full weight of the ABC certainly guaranteed that the youngest son of Ozzie and Harriet Nelson would sell records, but it didn’t guarantee that he wouldn’t stink. And Ricky Nelson didn’t stink—not by a long shot.
Beginning with his double-sided hit debut single, “I’m Walkin” b/w “A Teenager’s Romance” (1957), Nelson reeled off a string of 30 rockabilly-tinged top 40 hits in the next five years—more than any other artist in the same period save for Elvis Presley and Pat Boone. Like Elvis, Nelson saw his appeal take a major hit with the arrival of the Beatles in 1964. Nelson remained musically relevant over the next decade, though, even earning credit for helping inspire the California sound of artists like Linda Ronstadt and The Eagles with his country-inspired late 1960s work. But after a brief revival in the early 1970s fueled by the #6 pop hit “Garden Party” (1972), Nelson’s career as a recording artist essentially ended.
Nelson continued to tour and it was on one such tour that he boarded a chartered DC-3 in Guntersville, Alabama, bound for a New Year’s Eve appearance in Dallas. Shortly before reaching Dallas, the cabin of Nelson’s plane apparently filled with smoke due to a fire of undetermined origin. While the two pilots of the plane would survive their attempted emergency landing in a field outside De Kalb, Texas, all seven passengers on board were killed, including the first pop star to cross over from the Nielsen charts to the Billboard chats, Rick Nelson.
In 1987, Rick Nelson was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame—an honor no other former child actor has yet achieved.
TRIVIA FOR TODAY: the daughters of a mother who is colorblind and a father who has normal vision will have normal vision. The sons will be colorblind, however.