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Tribute to their musical mother

Molly Shore

Sarah Ford has something to live for. The Burbank resident set those

words to music and hopes to hear them sung Saturday at a gala

honoring her.


Three years after Ford, 88, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease

in 1988, she wrote the words to a “Something to Live For,” a song

subsequently recorded by Ford’s daughters, April Colon-Haywood and

Matilda Haywood.


It is one of the songs they will perform at the black-tie dinner,

fashion show and concert to raise money for her care, Colon-Haywood


Ford, who can no longer speak because of the dual strokes she

suffered six years ago, has been ill for four months.

But Colon-Haywood says her mother continues to celebrate life even

though doctors don’t hold out much hope for her recovery.

“When I come into the room, she is so happy, as if to say, ‘What


took you so long?’ ” Colon-Haywood said.

Matilda Haywood said that her mother, once a vibrant, take-charge

type of woman, refuses to give in to her illness.

“Over the years, I’ve come to the conclusion that she wants the

best for us, and she’s hanging in there to see it happen,” Haywood


Ford was in the nursing profession in Northern California until

she was 69. After moving to Los Angeles, she worked as an extra in TV


shows, and began her songwriting career.

“People are coming from Northern California just for this because

they love Mrs. Sarah Ford,” Colon-Haywood said.