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LETTERS

Hines: He was more than a dancer

August 16, 2003

OF all the nominations, awards and recognition Gregory Hines received throughout his career, he said none was so "humbling" as the tribute given by our Professional Dancers Society last year. He said, "With everything I have done, I have never considered myself to be anything other than a dancer."

He had arrived to rounds of flash bulbs, people seeking autographs, parents wanting his picture taken with their offspring. He complied with all requests, hurrying no one. I, too, engaged him: "I'm so pleased that we are honoring you today." He took my hand in both of his and responded genuinely: "Thank you ... and thank you for coming."

"I'm a former dancer," I added. He said, "No one is a former dancer; you're still a dancer, and you'll always be a dancer."

May the dancers who wish to emulate his talent remember to begin with the humility and gentlemanly qualities he exhibited as a man.

Barbara DeKovner-Mayer

Encino

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