COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) – The deaths last week of mother and daughter Hollywood legends Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, just one day apart, struck many of us as unbearably sad.
But the lesson from their lives should really be the joy they brought generations of movie fans.
Imagine the incredible odds against either of them starring in two of the most beloved movies of all time: "Singing in the Rain" and "Star Wars.”
Both mother and daughter were each just 19 years old when they turned two different on-screen characters into screen icons who will live forever.
Debbie Reynolds exhibited joy in every scene in "Singing in the Rain". Her brutal rehearsals with dance great Gene Kelly - learning to tap dance until her feet were bleeding -led to movie musical perfection on screen.
Carrie Fisher's Princess Leia was a female action hero in the most popular movie franchise ever.
But these two women should be admired for more than stardom.
They each worked hard, appearing on stage, on TV, in movies. Both were accomplished authors. Debbie Reynolds and her daughter each could have rested on their laurels early in their careers. But they never stopped working, even if their original fame could never be repeated.
Debbie Reynolds powered through bankruptcies and illness. Carrie fisher battled mental illness and addiction. And both survived failed romances and scandal.
Their personal qualities of character and old-fashioned work ethic should be celebrated just as much as their status as Hollywood legends.
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