There Is a Santa Claus, Says 19-Year-Old Norwood Girl

“I STILL don’t believe all the luck,” says Marybarbara McDonough to Nancy Conway (left) and her mother, Mrs. Michael McDonough of Norwood (right).

Sun, Oct 9, 1949 – 67 · The Boston Globe (Boston, Massachusetts) ·

Marybarbara McDonough is 19 but you’d better not tell her there isn’t any Santa Claus.

Not this week anyway. She set off for Chicago yesterday to join the Ice Follies troop and she’s still pinching herself practically black and blue to believe the things that have happened during the past three weeks.

Life has become a fairy story for the pretty blonde daughter of Mrs Michael J McDonough. 153 Nahatan st. Norwood with the plot written practically by Messrs. Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen. A spotlight part in a national radio show, a year’s contract with the Ice Follies and the start of a well-paying career have all tumbled into her lap since she got a telephone call three weeks ago yesterday, asking her to fly to the coast for an audition.

“As a matter of fact most of my luck has come through the telephone.” says shy Marybarbara who got a job with the Community Fund through a friend of hers who worked for the switchboard at the fund. “And each time I’ve learned a lot in a little time. I didn’t know anything about the fund when I started . . . just that it helped people out but I didn’t realize how many people and in what

“Now I’m going to learn a lot about the United States I guess’’ says the quiet girl who had never been aboard an airplane until two weeks ago when she was flown to Hollywood to audition for the Follies and take part in Ralph Edward’s “This is Your Life’’ program.

She’s travelled to Washington and New York with her family, but she’ll get her first look at 14 United States and Canadian cities when she tours with the Follies.

Until this year, Marybarbara had no idea that she’d earn her living with her skates “I was asked if I wanted to turn professional last year, but. I didn’t have any real interest in It. Then this year everything seemed to develop at once.”

It’s going to be a little lonely for Marybarbara’s mother and her two sisters. Betsy and Nancy, who are “proud as punch of their sister’s new career with the Ice Follies. “I’m glad to see Marybarbara start a career, but we’re certainly going to miss having her at home,” says her mother.

Marybarbara expects a few attacks of homesickness, but she figures she’ll be coming to Boston and Providence during the tour and will have a chance to visit home then. Jim Hickey of Hyde Park, who’s been beauing Marybarbara for quite a while is pretty pleased with her success story, too. but he’s going to start watching the mails from now on.

A member of the Boston Skating Club, Marybarbara has won some titles and done some good skating with three other Boston girls. Jo Barnum of Milton (who is now skating professionally in Buffalo). Nancy Conway of Cambridge, .and Nancy Nickerson of Boston.

“I guess I’m a perfect example of bad planning that turned out beautifully for me. at least,” says Marybarbara. “I didn’t have my mind set on skating for a career; I thought I’d work as secretary but traveling with an ice show does sound pretty exciting.”

Marybarbara may not have plotted out a careful scheme for her life but she’s wise enough to start planning now for the future. “When I’m too old to skate anymore I’m coming back to Boston to live. I wouldn’t trade Hollywood for New England . . . in fact, I wouldn’t trade any place for Boston.”