>Sonora / Tuolumne News, Sports, & Weather, Angels Camp, Twain Harte, Jamestown | Union Democrat

News Classifieds Web
web powered by Web Search Powered by Google

Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow Ritter leaves local legacy

Ritter leaves local legacy


When actor John Ritter died suddenly in September, Bret Harte High School junior Alice Diehl found herself drawn to TV memorials of his life and work.

Diehl, who is wheelchair bound because of cerebral palsy, is a budding actress who wants to pursue a theatrical career.

"I was watching ‘Entertainment Tonight' and learned that he raised money for cerebral palsy research and I thought, ‘what a cool guy,' " she said.

Within days she got a phone call informing her that she was to receive the first John Ritter Scholarship award for young performers.

"I got the call and this was the first time I was really, really speechless," she said.

The call was from Media Access, an organization that works with disabled actors like Diehl, helping them land roles on stage, TV and in film.

Doug Gordy, program coordinator for Media Access Office North in Pleasant Hill, said Ritter donated $5,000 to the organization earlier this year and asked that it be used to encourage young performers.

"He's been a longtime supporter of this office," Gordy said. "His older brother, Tom, has cerebral palsy and so John as been very supportive of our program."

Gordy said the actor's untimely death Sept. 11 from a ruptured aorta motivated Media Access to hurry to name the first two scholarship recipients this year — one from Southern California and one from Northern California.

"We chose Alice because she shows a lot of promise and a lot of spunk, but is still young and needs some training," Gordy said. "We thought this was a great match."

An 8-year-old actor from Los Angeles, Logan Murdock, and 17-year old Diehl received the first two John Ritter Scholarship Awards for Young Performers at a glitzy, star-filled ceremony at the St. Regis Hotel in Hollywood on Nov. 2.

Their $1,000 checks can be used for anything that furthers their careers in acting, Gordy said.

Diehl said the awards night was "awesome."

Follow UnionDemocrat.com

Get Today's Top Headlines to your inbox

The Union Democrat print edition

The Union Democrat 11/24/15

View Paper

The Union Democrat is now online in a Replica E-edition form and publishes Tuesday through Saturday. E-Edition or Print Plus subscribers have full access.


If you are not a current subscriber, subscribe today for immediate access. Circulation: 209-533-3614

View all The Union Democrat print publications

Weekender by The Union Democrat

Weekly Arts and entertainment guide for Calaveras and Tuolumne counties

Weekender 11/19/15

View Guide

Available online every Friday or get it early in Thursday's print edition.

View past copies of the weekender

Local / Sports / Business / Stocks / News of Record / State / Nation/World / Obituaries / Submit News
Editorials / Letters
Union Democrat Photos / Community Photos /
Search Classifieds / Jobs / Autos / Homes / Rentals / Place an Ad
Online Extras
Weather / Local Business Links / Community Links / Photo Reprints
Union Democrat
About / Contact / Commercial Printing / Subscriptions / Terms of Use / Site Map

© Copyright 2001 - 2015 Western Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. By Using this site you agree to our Terms of Use