By John Peters

July 24, 2014

To the Editor,

A couple of months ago my husband and I had the privilege of visiting the lovely city of Mount Airy and meeting a TV legend, Ms. Betty Lynn (Thelma Lou of the Andy Griffith Show).

As a child growing up, the Andy Griffith Show was watched in our household every day, and that tradition has continued to this day throughout our family. Five generations have watched those beloved townspeople of Mayberry, now including our children and grandchildren.

Thelma Lou (Betty Lynn)has always been one our favorite characters. When I discovered that Betty Lynn gave autographs at the Andy Griffith Museum one day every month, I knew that I had to meet her. My husband and I made the trip from Panama City, Florida, to meet her, but we were in no way prepared for how wonderful she was.

She was waving and smiling to everyone when she entered the room. She sat at a table signing autographs and even though the room was filled with people, she took her time with each person who went up to the table to meet her. She laughed and talked to each person as if they were old friends, answered all of their questions, listened to their stories and let her picture be taken with each one.

I have met other celebrities in my life, but I can honestly say that no one has ever impressed me like Betty Lynn. She is the perfect example of small town charm, kindness and graciousness. Meeting her was like talking to an old friend, as if we had known each other forever. Even with the knowledge that she is a well-known celebrity, there was no arrogance about her.

My husband and I will always remember our meeting with Betty Lynn. She is the embodiment of all of the warmth and goodness that a small town represents and she is truly an asset to your fine city. May God bless Mount Airy and one of your finest residents, Betty Lynn.

Debbie Marley

Panama City, Florida