I’m just a fan who only knew him through his films, but James Cagney in “Yankee Doodle Dandy” is my favorite movie of all time.
It was heart-wrenching to watch as time and illness took their toll on the great entertainer, the flame of red hair turned to white, and that magnificent energy trapped in a wheelchair. He, who always referred to himself as a “hoofer,” or a “song and dance man,” finally unable to walk anymore, let alone dance. But still it was comforting to have him with us.
Now he is gone, and we will miss him, but we can take joy in the knowledge that he’s “slipped the surly bonds of earth,” and somewhere our “Yankee Doodle Dandy” is dancing, free and young again!