Celebrating Sherrye Haynie in Morro Bay

Sherrye Haynie will be remembered Monday, August 12, 2019 at the Morro Bay Yacht Club from 3-5pm. Friends are welcome to bring their favorite stories, an appetizer if they would like to share, and tip a glass to Sherrye.  There were so many stories out there to tell.

The following is the 2nd story I wrote about Sherrye. The first one she had framed and kept prominently in her Morro Bay beach-designed home. It also got Bob and I invitations to all her wonderful gatherings — or maybe it was Bob she was inviting. She loved to flirt — harmlessly! Tom was the love of her life!

She might have been the first person I met at the Morro Bay Chamber of Commerce when we moved to Morro Bay sixteen or so years ago. She was the ultimate Ambassador welcoming all with a big smile and encouragement to get involved. It was sincere. She wanted to sponsor us to join the Morro Bay Yacht Club, which we eventually did because the people were so friendly and Bob thought he might like to learn to sail. He did love to kayak with his new friends.

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My favorite memory of Sherrye is what could have been. I wanted to work with my daughter Jody on a coffee table book that included Sherrye in one of the many outfits/costumes she had hanging in her garage-conversion into a mega closet. There had to be hundreds and she could fit in any of them. The text would be her memory of wearing the outfit for the movie or event it was designed for. I’m confident it could have been a best seller — at least in Morro Bay and maybe Hawaii where she still has family or even among Hollywood friends of Tom Selleck, Sherrye’s long time friend when she and Tom lived in Hawaii. We would have asked Tom to contribute to the Forward.

Oh well! Those chances pass us by if we don’t grab them. Marlene Duncan, a good friend always to Sherrye was willing to be her dresser on the project as Sherrye was definitely aging, but still had the memories to share and the body to model the clothes.  She would have been thrilled to do the project since she could always smell a camera in the room ready to preserve her smiles.

At the very least, enjoy my story of …

Sherrye Randall Haynie: A Morro Bay “Living Treasure”

By Judy Salamacha

Many community Chambers of Commerce take time out to annually recognize a worthy citizen and supportive business.  And thus, sincere congratulations are in order to Morro Bay citizen Bill Peirce and Albertson’s Sean Emerson for all they have done.

However, newly installed chamber president Andrea Klipfel was this year’s designee to announce the most cherished prize of all.  A regal nod is given to someone who has lived life to its fullest, yet continues to dedicate talent, time and devotion.  A better pick for this year’s ‘Living Treasure’ could not be found than former citizen of the year and ambassador extraordinaire – Sherrye Randall Haynie.

Still at every ribbon cutting and mixer the Chamber schedules, Haynie never meets a stranger and if she suspects the slightest inkling one might share some time with the Chamber, her winning smile and welcoming attitude builds a base for a strong future member and a new friend. She will “treasure” this newest honor and not just because she’ll get her picture in the paper again.

What an amazingly charmed life she has led so far!  However, probe a bit beyond the actress who’s Rita Hayworth-style locks and photogenic smile allowed her so many Hollywood experiences and she’ll humbly credit good parentage, a strong marital partnership, and her personal ethic to do what was expected of her as a daughter, wife, parent, and citizen of Hollywood and the world.

A voting member of SAG(Screen Actor’s Guild) Haynie’s bio sheet boasts 35 films as recent as 2008 working at 20th Century, MGM and RKO; 40 television commercials, 12 travelogues, and 10 soaps. Mostly an extra or walk-on she’s appeared in Cannon, Manix, Hawaiian Eye, Magnum PI, and Hawaii Five-0.

Johnny Weissmuller taught her to swim in the famed Fleishhacker Pool in San Francisco.  This skill got her many bits to swim in movies, including Baywatch and recently for the television series Lost.

She photographed for print ads for Camay Soap, Lucky Strike, Gordon’s Gin, and Black Label to mention a few.

“With my dark red hair and bushy eyebrows, I photographed better than I look,” she said pointing to portraits looking more like famed movie stars than the friendly Chamber ambassador.

Haynie’s done theatre in New York, Philadelphia, Hollywood, Hawaii, Laguna and Pasadena.  She’s performed in major events such as Las Vegas Tappers, USO Shows, the Hollywood Palladium and “the Academy Awards just before 911.”

Frank Sinatra personally picked her out of a show at the Surfrider Club in Hawaii to meet for a quiet dinner for two.  Some of her best buddies were Tom Selleck and William Holden.

“Bill asked me to get him into the exclusive Outrigger Club and I said I would if he got me into the Mount Kenya Safari Club.” When she fulfilled her end of the deal, she was invited on safari with her friend Bill Holden.

She’s worked with Bogart, Hepburn, Lana Turner, Joan Crawford, Esther Williams, Betty Grable, Alice Fey, Sandra Bullock and the list goes on.

She adored her mother and father, but admits, “My mother was a stage mother. She was from Paris and beautiful.  She had an affair with Adolph Zukor (head of Paramount Pictures) to get me into the movies. In those days you had to be part of a studio and they taught you their way of tap dancing, voice and acting.”

Her first speaking part that determined her lifelong membership in SAG was in Song of Bernadette. She laughingly will perform her one-liner, “Hither she cometh.”

And yet her lifelong Hollywood flirtation has not defined her career. “I could never have been a stuck up movie star. Tom is more famous and has done so much for the country.  My career was fantasy.”

Tom Haynie’s achievements opened doors for the love of his life beyond her Hollywood associations. Holding the Michigan State NCAA 1937 and 1939 220 and 440 Freestyle records, he qualified for the Olympics in 1936 and 1940. World War II interrupted one of his appearances. He was also the acclaimed Stanford coach who won the PAC 10 ten times in a row between 1947 and 1960.

They enjoyed homes in Palo Alto, Laguna and Hawaii where they still maintain a home and visit annually when in good health. Ultimately, the beach beckoned them away from northern California.  He quit coaching to teach school at Panahou School in Hawaii, recently famed as President Obama’s school.

“How I met Tom is funny,” she said. Haynie interviewed Sherrye for a lifeguard position at a municipal pool in Palo Alto where she was living to help out her ailing mother.

“I dressed up in one of my film bathing suits and knocked on his door for the interview.  He just lived around the block from us. He answered, took one look and said ‘You’re hired’. We were married about a year later.”

With three girls and one son, their family and social lives centered on his coaching career at Stanford. Herself a member of the Crystal Plunge Swim Team of San Francisco where Esther Williams and Olympian Greta Anderson trained, Sherrye always loved swimming and enjoyed going to her husband’s meets.

She continued to dabble in film, commercials and even had her own television show in San Francisco, but her life was wherever Tom was.

As the daughter of a naval officer, her childhood wanderlust whetted her appetite for world travel. Due to his Olympic experience, Tom and Sherrye received some very interesting invitations to travel worldwide.  A member of the Mensa Society, she always researched the lands and people she visited and is actually a graduate of the American Institute of Foreign Studies.  The wildlife of Africa and Samoan and Egyptian cultures hold her fondest memories.

Sherrye enjoyed her childhood living in Samoa when her dad was alive. Her father was U.S. Navy Captain George Bertram Landenberger (Landy), who commanded the U.S.S. Indiana. He received the Navy Cross and served as the Naval Governor of American Samoa from 1934 to 1936.

“He almost married Lillian Russell,” said Sherrye pointing to a picture of the couple, “but he married my mother, Julianna Moody. They were very good parents. President Roosevelt appointed my dad governor of Samoa.  I remember sitting on Roosevelt’s lap in between the braces.”

Sherrye says life in Samoa ruled by the chiefs prepared her to deal with future Hollywood directors.  “I learned there is order in life. The director gives an order and you have to stand your mark…sometimes for hours.” She noted making movies is not always as glamorous or easy as one thinks.

Almost eleven years ago the Haynies invested in acreage in Paso Robles. They would travel back and forth to Morro Bay longing to be near the water.  Ultimately they invested in their “Hawaiian” hide-away in Morro Bay.

Life has been about getting involved in the Chamber of Commerce and the Morro Bay Yacht Club – enjoying new friendships and maintaining former relationships in Hawaii. Sherrye continues to do film whenever the opportunity presents itself.  And Tom recently was recognized for his support for youth swimming in San Luis Obispo.

When asked how she wanted to be remembered it was not for her many titles – Miss Teen Queen, Miss Santa Cruz, Miss Palo Alto, Miss Malibu, Miss Samoa, Miss etc. etc. etc., Morro Bay Citizen of the Year, and now Morro Bay Living Treasure.

She wanted to be remembered as a happy young bride surfing in Hawaii on her honeymoon with the love of her life – Tom Haynie. Congratulations to the happy couple today and many tomorrows.

 

Reach Judy Salamacha at salamachapr@sbcglobal.net or 801-1422.

 

 

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