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Stephanie Edwards Talks Rose Parade, Planning for “Act III” at Morningside of Fullerton

Longtime Los Angeles broadcast personality Stephanie Edwards recently visited with guests and residents of Morningside, the continuing care retirement community in Fullerton. Edwards shared stories from her 33 years with the Tournament of Roses Parad
Longtime Los Angeles broadcast personality Stephanie Edwards recently visited with guests and residents of Morningside, the continuing care retirement community in Fullerton. Edwards shared stories from her 33 years with the Tournament of Roses Parad

If anyone knows how to stop and smell the roses, it’s Stephanie Edwards. The longtime Los Angeles broadcast personality recently shared tales from her years with the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena and “Ralph Story’s Los Angeles” television show before a packed house at Morningside of Fullerton, the continuing care retirement community in Fullerton, Calif.

Freely admitting she turned 70 in November, Edwards’ self-deprecating humor was front and center with stories about aging gracefully in a youth-obsessed Hollywood.

“I’ve had people approach me at the supermarket and say things like, ‘I heard you were dead’ and ‘Didn’t you used to be somebody?’” Edwards laughed.  “And what I say is, ‘Yes, I used to be somebody and I still am.’ But the truth is, I’m not the same person I was 10 years ago and I’m not the same person I’ll be in another 10 years. You change how you think about things as you age.

“In past generations, Act I was the part of your life where you grew up. Act II was when you became who you were as a fully mature person, when you had your career and family. And Act III was when you sat down and basically waited to die – you didn’t plan for anything more to happen to you. But now we have time to plan our Act III, to enjoy our lives without the demands of work and family.”

Edwards’ presentation also included insights she learned firsthand while serving as a caregiver for her own parents, such as:

“Many seniors decide they want to ‘age in place’ and stay in their homes. They have this idea they’ll just die peacefully in their bed one day and their children won’t be troubled at all. Unfortunately, that’s just not realistic. Most of us will need to leave our homes for some level of care.

·         My husband and I, along with other family members, were caregivers for all four of our parents for 13 years, creating huge dysfunction and actual illness among some of us. Our parents never intended that to happen, but it did. Their Act III did not play out exactly how they thought it would.

·         If you were to talk to your own children, I think you’d find they’ve been concerned about your Act III for a long time but haven’t known how to bring it up.

·         Over the years I’ve learned how important it is to plan for Act III, which is exactly what my husband and I are doing now. We are going to live our Act III to the fullest. Life has been a big adventure, and now we’re going to have a new one!”

Edwards also shared stories about some of the grand marshals for the Rose Parade over the years including President Eisenhower, Roy Rogers, Fred Rogers, Art Linkletter, Bill Cosby, Shirley Temple Black and Regis Philbin. Her favorite grand marshal of all time was Kermit the Frog in 1996. To remain out of sight, the puppeteer had to be sewn into the leather of the back seat of the vehicle.

Edwards wrapped up the presentation by taking a few questions from the audience, also announcing she has been contracted to co-emcee the KTLA broadcast of the Rose Parade at least through 2015.

Vito Spago May 13, 2014 at 07:32 PM
No gay marriage this year, eh Stephen. My dog vomited.
Yvonne May 21, 2014 at 05:33 PM
What do you mean?
Nancy Wyatt May 16, 2014 at 10:41 AM
Love this lady! I had the pleasure of hearing her talk to a group about 20 years ago and always remembered it as one of the most down to earth talks from a celebrity I'd ever heard. It's really hard to think of her as 70 years old! She has one of the brightest personalities ever. I'd love to see her again. Thank you for this brief report...
Vito Spago May 21, 2014 at 06:15 PM
Yvonne: I did not think the gay marriage ceremonies during the parade were appropriate for family audiences.
Yvonne May 22, 2014 at 10:25 AM
Gotcha

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