September 16th, 2009
10:51 PM ET

Two more celeb deaths, with emotional attachments

I don't want to become known as the celebrity death writer around here - the reaction to the title alone of my "Summer of Death" blog entry two weeks ago drew enough flak to turn anyone off the subject - but today's passings of two well-known figures from the '60s gave me pause ... and not just because I enjoyed their work.

I first saw the wonderfully gifted character actor Henry Gibson as the head Nazi in "The Blues Brothers," grumbling to his aide to get Jake and Elwood's license plate after the boys had forced his marchers off a bridge into the water.  But my parents, and millions of others, first saw and enjoyed him on "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In," as he spouted offbeat poetry amid all of the groovy non sequiturs.

Likewise, my folks were listening to singer and activist Mary Travers of Peter, Paul & Mary before I was even born, and while they didn't try to make me love folk music as I grew up, it was always there if I was interested.  They also made sure my young daughter didn't miss out on the trio's magical music, getting her hooked on their kid-friendly "Peter, Paul & Mommy" CD early.

So while I'll miss both performers for the delight they brought me, I know the pangs I feel at their passing, at ages 73 and 72, respectively, are largely because I connect them with my parents.  I'm blessed to have my folks still living, still together, and close by, and I don't need two of their contemporaries passing away for me to appreciate them.  But the news did make me pick up the phone and call them - a silver lining to a doubly sad day, and one of which I'm sure both Gibson and Travers would approve.

soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Elin Lloyd

    i love Henry Gibson very much he was a true beauty miss him every dayx

    May 27, 2012 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
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    April 23, 2012 at 9:32 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Pilar

    I went to a Peter, Paul, & Mary concert at the University of Kentucky on the weekend JFK's assasin, Oswald, was arrested in Dallas. In that tumultuous week of Kennedy's death, PP&M and their ideals helped bolster all who grieved, through their excellent music. The night of the concert, Mary Travers looked like a blonde angel down there in the spotlight. I'll always remember her that way.

    September 18, 2009 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Dianne Ellis

    Mitch I wish I could have said that. Perfect for Mary

    A beautiful voice stilled but I still hum PP& M songs all the time in my head

    September 18, 2009 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  5. mary

    I was named after her. Her singing has always been a huge part of my life!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Rest in Peace.

    September 18, 2009 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  6. Rantamouth

    Thanks Peter, Paul & Mary for so powerfully heightening already strongly beautiful melodies by the likes of John Denver and Bob Dylan.

    It brings a smile to my soul to know that generations of new 5-year-olds everywhere STILL LOVE and sing along to Puff the Magic Dragon as enthusiastically as if the song had just come out. But that's the beauty of such timeless music and songs. They're timeless!

    Thanks for the music and the care you expressed Mary. The world is always sorely in need of more people like you.

    September 18, 2009 at 4:31 am | Report abuse |
  7. Allen M

    My first concert was P P & M in 1966. I saw them many times afterwards, the last in 2001. In 1983, after a concert, I proposed marriage to Mary. Unfortunately, my wife told Mary I was already spoken for. Mary said, "Allen, I have this strict policy. Call me old fashioned, but I don't date married men." I"m still holding a grudge against my wife.

    Mary was a voice for every disenfranchised person in the world.
    Good-night, Mary. Bravo! Great job!

    September 18, 2009 at 2:15 am | Report abuse |
  8. Chaz in Vegas

    When I think of Peter, Paul and Mary I think of my dad. Sadly my father passed 10 years ago, but some of the happiest times of my childhood were driving with my dad across the country listening to Peter Paul and Mary, James Taylor and John Denver. Mary, I will always connect you to some of the most special and important moments of my life. You were part of something wonderful that happened in this country and I thank you for the memories you have given me.

    God bless and rest....Every place I go, I think of you,
    Every song I sing, I sing for you....

    September 18, 2009 at 1:20 am | Report abuse |
  9. jeff

    She had a wonderful life, was socially effective, loved my millions, leaves a beautiful legacy, and now it's her time to go. Celebrate her, don't be sad.

    September 18, 2009 at 1:05 am | Report abuse |
  10. MaryRM

    @K Jo
    didn't your mother tell you that you don't build people up by tearing someone else down?

    PPM are some of my earliest and dearest memories. I wanted to sing "blowin' in the Wind" when I was 10 at the school talent show, but was not allowed to because they felt I should sing something more appropriate (aka silly and simple). I really resented that, political already at 10. My childhood is filled with their music and I always loved hearing it over the years, still singing along. I sang many of their tunes to my children at bedtime.

    Beautiful music that encouraged us to make a difference.

    September 18, 2009 at 12:23 am | Report abuse |
  11. Rich Goepfert

    One of my favorite folk artists has always been Peter Paul & Mary. I first saw them at a 1978 benefit put together by the late Harry Chapin. I fell in love with their music immediately. Many years later, I had a chance meeting with Mary. She was very gracious and very funny to talk to. A very warm person. While her passing saddens me, I still have her recorded legacy to allow her spirit to live on.

    September 17, 2009 at 11:22 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Patty

    So many songs, so many memories, and now so much sadness. I've cried all day. Perhaps my favorite PP & M song of all time is their version of "Don't Laugh at Me" a song we can all relate to regardless of our backgrounds.

    September 17, 2009 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Colleen

    My husband and I saw PPM a few years ago in Trenton, NJ. Wonderful show at the War Memorial Building. I wanted to see George Carlin, also playing at War Memorial, but was working that night and then he passed.
    Will carry great memories of all the PPM songs that we still play on the albums and the CD for the car.

    September 17, 2009 at 10:49 pm | Report abuse |
  14. MRM

    I feel like I lost a good friend. Wonderful voice, wonderful group.

    September 17, 2009 at 10:35 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Suz

    so sad that they made a big deal out of other stars and not Patrick Swazye

    September 17, 2009 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Karen K Baker

    My sincerest regards to Mary Travers family and friends, I cannot believe that the media is not reporting this on page one where it should be. I guess it's more important that we read a report about some Rapper's girl friend on the red carpet.
    Peter, Paul and Mary were an incredible musical act that perpetuated Peace and understanding throughout the world. It is so incredibly sad that we are not seeing new artists of this quality in this desperate age!

    September 17, 2009 at 9:42 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Steve_in_Colorado

    I was fortunate enough to see Peter, Paul, and Mary in concert at Ravinia (in Chicago) in 2002. They were wonderful. Mary, still had her 'Mary Hair' – the trademark bangs, and long blonde hair .... of course. her face showed her age. Their songs represent a different time – that of my childhood, when we were so optimistic – If I Had a Hammer, Puff – The Magic Dragon. Mary will be forever etched in my memories – twentysomething with the "Mary Hair". Hard to believe she's gone!

    September 17, 2009 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Cheryl Comber

    My heart is truly sad to hear of Mary's passing. the prime of my high school years was spent listening to PP&M. the thrill of that era was seeing them in person at the State Theater in Hartford, CT. I can still picture Mary in her lime green outfit on stage. PP&M entertained a group of us every Friday night as we listened to their 'ALBUMS' and sang along with our guitarist et al. probably much different than teenagers' venue these days. As an Adult I saw trio in NYC singing songs from their last cd Peter, Paul & Mommy. My fondest memory was when Mary sang to her granddaughter cuddled up in a rocking chair singing "and the wind will whisper your name to me" truly heartwarming and a most touching moment. I am blessed to have had Mary as a part of my teen years and will always remember her blonde flowing hair in the breeze. Mary is the end of an era but a warm and last memory in my heart. "The wind will whisper your name to me, Mary" and you will remain in my heart as a wonderful memory of my teenage years. God bless you. Shalom.

    September 17, 2009 at 9:31 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Paula

    I heard about Mary's death on the way to work this morning. They started playing one of their songs..."The cruel was is raging, Johnny has to fight..." and I was transported back to junior high and our dining room where I sat and listened to the LP over and over again until I learned the lyrics to their songs. I am reminded of all the events of the 60's and how their music affected everyone. Now I have to find a CD with that song so I can always remember that time and place. She had such a beautiful voice and sweet spirit. This really has been a summer of death of many people we held dear.

    September 17, 2009 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  20. William McEvoy

    I have been an enourmous fan of Peter Paul & Mary since I was eight years old ( I am 53 now.) . My Dad had their first album with the cover pic of them at the Bitter End in NYC. I have seen them four times in concert, at the Tower Theatre in Philly, and at the Garden State Arts Center. No musical act has ever produced such a sound as rich and envigorating as PP&M. Mary's voice will always resonate with me. It 's hard to explain how sad I felt today. I play so many songs of theirs on guitar. The Beatles were great, and CSNY provided more social conscience, but Peter Paul & Mary started it all. I feel like I am 500 miles from home.

    September 17, 2009 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Joan

    The very first "45" I ever bought was PP&M's "Leaving on a Jet Plane".... I was 8 years old and went to the record store with my parents. I was able to listen to it in a little booth (I thought it was sound proof) with headphones. I felt so grown up. Back then the 45's came in paper sleeves. What a super memory, of a great song sung by a wonderfully talented woman. I still have that 45. Thank you Mary.

    Rest in peace, sweet lady...

    September 17, 2009 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Jeri Lynn

    Mary Travers represented an era. Of all the celebrities during my lifetime thus far (I was born in 1945), Mary influenced my life the most. Her wonderful voice, beauty, confidence, vibrant personality, concern for the world, and loving ways will be missed on Planet Earth. I saw Peter, Paul, and Mary in concert many times in the 1960's–concerts that were uplifting, moving, and wise. They were a magical group....forever magical! God Bless You, Mary! I can't thank you enough for having touched my life profoundly.

    September 17, 2009 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Mike Dugger

    Please.Don't you have any good taste at all? Mary Travers was a beautiful woman.At her passing, I think it would have been a nice and classy thing to do by putting a more flattering picture of Mary on this site.

    September 17, 2009 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Aaron Waisler

    I went to see Peter, Paul, and Mary when I was 4 or 5 (I am now 16). I remember seeing her smiling face on stage at the Westbury Music Festival in Westbury, New York. They asked all of the kids to come up and get a hug and kiss from Mary. I was one of the kids to go up. My sister gave her flowers. I still remember the lipstick left on my face when I walked back to my seat. She really warmed my heart and soul. She was a wonderful, loving person who happened to have a beautiful voice. I beg Peter and Paul to still make that music come alive because that is what she would have wanted. Rest In Peace Mary. We all love you and miss you.

    September 17, 2009 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
  25. cooper

    To really go back....Hebry Gibson was one of Jerry Lewis' students in the original Nutty Professor. He played a student named "Gibson" oddly enough.

    Puff The Magic Dragon was one of the first 45s I ever owned....

    September 17, 2009 at 5:37 pm | Report abuse |
  26. K Jo

    yep, they got no spot light on cnn because neither died of a over dose, neither jumped on a stage drunk and was rude, neither of them made an im pact.... well that is not true... I loved PP&M.. and their music talked of being gay,of being latino, of being down trodden and trodden on... ya.. who cares about that... Mary, died after years of pain.. but then she did not do a move with demi moore.. not that I am not a PS fan I am but.. oh well falling on deaf ears I am sure..

    September 17, 2009 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Bill

    It is sad to see our cultural mentors leave us, but the treasures and memories they have left behind for us enrich us for the rest of our journey. So thank you Mary Travers for the gift you shared with us and the voice that spoke and sang out in support of the disenfranchised and downtrodden. Yours was a life well-lived.

    September 17, 2009 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
  28. jj

    Peter, Paul and Mary provided the soundtrack to the summer of love and all summers thereafter. Rest in peace, Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 5:19 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Laura

    “To this day, Puff the Magic Dragon makes me cry…and now, I’ll be just a little sadder when I hear it. Thank you for the wonderful music.”

    I can't even read the words today and my children now have children! Bless you Mary!

    September 17, 2009 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Laura

    My parents' first date was a PP&M concert in Indiana. During my growing up years I played the vinyl copies of their albums to shreds. I learned to play the guitar because of them and, to this day, can play most of their catalog for memory. I cannot comprehend a world without Mary Travers – my grief is profound. But I know that it will pass and be replaced by a sense of joy for the change she wrought in this troubled world.

    September 17, 2009 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Ken Imison

    Its so sad – they were a big part of our (the Baby Boomers) generation. Who will evey forget Puff the Magic dragon or protest songs like Where have all the flowers gone. They were icons of our generation whether you lived in North America or Europe. We were all united in a common cause – Peace

    September 17, 2009 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
  32. me

    Cant believe she's gonna get only a blip in time where a pedaphile will get a whole years worth of press. You were an inspiration for all people and my children still listen to your songs thx you.

    September 17, 2009 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Laura Palos y Roybal

    I am not the type of person who is easily starstruck or prone to worshipping an icon in the entertainment world, but, Mary Travers, had a profound influence on me from the first time I heard her sing "Blowin' in the Wind" and on into my adult life. I thought she was the coolest chick on the planet and I always will. Peace to you, Ms. Travers, in this lifetime, you done elegant.

    September 17, 2009 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
  34. G. Miller

    All the Greats are dying and only a select few in Hollywood and the music world today barely come close to these entertainers. I hope that the wonderful music of P P & M continues on forever and that Henry will finally get his Winkie Winkie Doolar. My children really love Laugh-in. And they are fond of P P & M too. Please keep their legacy alive folks.

    September 17, 2009 at 4:09 pm | Report abuse |
  35. Gabrielle

    I am saddened by both of these. I grew up in the 60's and early 70's. My mom usually had Peter, Paul & Mary cranking in the kitchen while we all did chores on Saturdays. We would make fun of her dancing with the cupboards to songs like "I Dig Rock'nRoll Music " and cry with her with "Day Is Done". Over the years, we have continued to see their shows, we have taken our kids and its always been a great time.

    Henry Gibson and Laugh In was always fun too. I can still see him standing there with the flower pot and poem. Although recently I enjoyed him on Boston Legal as a dreaded judge.

    They will both be missed.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  36. jim

    '500 miles' was playing on the jukebox in 1963. I immediately connected with the song because I was literally hundreds of miles from home. the next year I heard those haunting words in concert in Portland, Maine. I was hooked. I went to their last 'concert' with Peter & Paul at Wolftrap – and cried, laughed, was filled with such joy for what Mary has given to us all these years. Weave me the Sunshine has new meaning for me after Peter & Paul lead off with its theme of joy.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Lance

    I had the opportunity of being at an outdoor Peter Paul & Mary concert in Santa Barbara back in the early 70’s. I remember telling my friend that Mary's voice could move a mountain. At the time the group was talking about being young parents and how it had changed their lives. I will always have fond memories of Mary and that warm breezy evening many years ago.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Kim Martin

    So sad to hear of Mary's passing. Watching PBS Specials with Peter, Paul, & Mary were so entertaining! Just watching the audience singing along and enjoying their music and talent will be remembered forever.

    Watching Laugh In with Henry Gibson was so funny. Television as we knew if of yesterday is no more. Henry was a kind soul and will be missed.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  39. kayla

    I saw PP&M in concert just a few months ago at the State Theater in New Brunswick, NJ. Mary was in a wheel chair, and on oxygen. I cried almost the whole concert when I realized this was the last time I would see her. I have loved her since I was a small child. Growing up with their music and ideals have been part of my upbringing. Rest in peace lovely Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  40. marmot

    Mary Travers and PP&M were at the forefront of a bustling movement, singing with great harmony about activism on their acoustic guitars in cafes and venues where people gather. Fortunately, generations continue to carry on that tradition. Thank you, Mary, for your inspiration.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Liz Kulla

    I loved hearing Peter, Paul & Mary. when I was a small child my parents played all their albums (vinyl). I now have all the CDs that I can get my hands on! Mary Travers will be sorely missed! By everyone most especially a "young" lady in Washington, DC!

    September 17, 2009 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Karen Z

    In the mid 80s, my husband and I were fortunate to catch a live concert in NYC. Awesome! RIP Mary, now you can sing with the angels.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Geri

    The entertainment industry has lost two truly talented people; one a singer and one a talented comedian and actor.
    I am child of the 60's and remember well the first time I heard Peter, Paul and Mary. I may not have always agreed with their poltical views, but I respected their talent. I enjoyed their music very much.
    Henry Gibson was funny and certainly knew how to make people laugh; along with being an excellent actor (Boston Legal).
    They will both be missed.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Diego

    It's sad to hear of the deaths of Mary Travers and Henry Gibson. Ms. Travers was part of one of the most famous folk groups in music history. How can anyone forget "Leaving on a Jet Plane?" Mr. Gibson was a terrific character actor, whose recent stint on "Boston Legal" earned him more critical praise. It has been a sad summer for entertainment and media. We lost greats such as Ed McMahon, the great Walter Cronkite, the talented Farrah Fawcett, the musical genius Michael Jackson and the handsome Patrick Swayze. We also mourn the loss of Eunice Kennedy Shriver, a beacon of hope for the disabled, and her brother, the Lion of the Senate, Ted Kennedy. All this death reminds us to cherish life while we can. R.I.P. to all.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Bob in VA

    "To this day, Puff the Magic Dragon makes me cry…and now, I’ll be just a little sadder when I hear it. Thank you for the wonderful music."

    Laurie, I'm glad I'm not the only one! And it's getting worse for me now that I have young children. Once I heard Puff in their pre-school room and almost had to leave the room.

    Everyone is probably feeling a little older today.

    September 17, 2009 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Larry M

    Ah Mary..what can I say..that hasn't already been said?

    You were a light and an inspiration to us all.
    Not just your music with Peter and Paul but your being up there to speak for those who needed an ally .

    Thanks...thanks. high!

    September 17, 2009 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  47. Joel

    Henry Gibson made me sad, I loved his poems as a kid, but Mary Travers gave me real pause. Peter Paul and Mary have been part of my life since I was a baby and Mary Travers' voice is one of the great sounds in popular music. An era of musicians from a very important era is aging and I do not look forward to losing more great voices like hers. To think that Peter Paul and Mary will never sing together again puts a great hole in the world. Peace to both and their families.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Amy

    Peter, Paul, and Mary were an integral part of my childhood. I remember listening my parents' vinyl copies of their albums growing up. I was so excited when I went to overnight camp because I knew so many of the songs we sang at the campfires, as many were from the Peter, Paul, and Mary catalogue.
    Last night, after hearing the news of Mary Travers' passing, I fell asleep singing 'Leavin' on a Jet Plane' and 'Puff the Magic Dragon'. Ms. Travers will surely be missed, but her legacy lives on through her music. I look forward to sharing the songs of Peter, Paul, and Mary with my children.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Keeah

    "...if you miss the train i'm on, you will know that i am can hear the whistle blow.........."
    i will so miss your sweet voice Mary...Sleep with the Angels

    September 17, 2009 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Chris

    Don't forget Henry Gibson's classic character Dr. Werner Klopek in The Burbs, a wholly underrated comedy gem from the 1980's. And of course, Laugh In. A comic genius who will be greatly missed.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Lynne

    Mary, Henry and Patrick: You did the ultimate! You made people THINK, LAUGH and CRY! You brought out the humanity in people, and that is all that we can hope to achieve in this life. Thank you and know you did make a difference.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Teresa Crowder

    I was lucky enough to be at a summertime PP & M show at Chastain Park in Atlanta about 15 years ago. The evening turned stormy and dark and windy and it started to pour. I will never forget Mary opening a red umbrella and walking through the audience in the pouring rain, still singing and laughing, with that beautiful smile on her face. An indelible memory of an unforgettable spirit. It's raining in Atlanta today and I am crying. RIP — you are a hero.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  53. Laurie

    To this day, Puff the Magic Dragon makes me cry...and now, I'll be just a little sadder when I hear it. Thank you for the wonderful music.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Dianne

    Rest in peace, Mary...the most memorial voice of my childhood.

    Rest in peace, Henry...I'll miss your lovable boyish grin & charm.

    My memories of these two extraordinary people are very dear to my heart.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Jim

    My cousins in another city had a large family, and they always seemed to have the latest music and dances - I remember being the youngest one, and passing that first PPM album cover around the room, as it filled with the purest,, most harmonious music I had ever heard. That album, and the eargerly-awaited ones that followed it, started me on a music journey that has taken me in many varied directions, but remains strong to this day.
    Today, I'll set my iPod to PPM and probably take the long way home.
    THANK YOU Mary, Paul & Peter for the wonderful music that remains close to my heart.


    September 17, 2009 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Susie V Kaufman

    As a child of The Sixties, I grew up with both Mary Travers (and Peter, Paul & Mary) and the adorable Henry Gibson.

    I wasn't a real heavy fan of "Laugh-In," but I watched, mostly because of Henry Gibson and his, "A Poem... by Henry Gibson." A gentle soul, and lucky him to have worked with Robert Altman on four different projects! Lucky Robert to have cast Henry Gibson. Henry Gibson was soooo CUTE!

    I was a bohemian-turned Beatnik-turned hippie, so was very aware of Peter, Paul & Mary early on. Mary Travers had this dark, smooth, delicious voice which always made me smile.

    I feel a part of my life has been pulled away from me with these two latest deaths, beloved talented people in my own history.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Michael Shea

    When I was young and coming of age in the sixties I had a major crush on Mary Travers. I thought she was so beautiful, both spiritually and physically.

    Peter, Paul & Mary were the musical conscious of our times. They participated in and wrote music in support of the civil gihts revolution, against the Vietnam and other wars.

    Along with Ted Kennedy, the death of Mary Travers a piece my soul
    has gone with them.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Kay

    My very first concert was PP&M in Pittsburgh 1968 when I was 16 and I have loved their music ever since. I was planning to go to the concert in Philadelphia last year with my children. I wanted them to experience these folk music legends, so different from their current music options. Unfortunately it was cancelled due to Mary's health. May her family know how special she was for many reasons.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
  59. Cassie Bullabaugh

    No holiday season is quite right for me unless I see the Peter,Paul & Mary PBS Special. I cry every time. The world is a little less shiny without Mary in it.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Todd

    Like so many others, I grew up listening to and enjoying PP & M songs. "Puff, the Magic Dragon" is one of my earliest childhood memories, in fact. I was privileged enough to see them twice in concert, and what a show they provided! We had tickets on two different occasions to take our daughter to shows, but alas, both were cancelled due to Mary's illness.

    You certainly don't have to agree with their political views to appreciate their love of all humankind, which came across clearly and poignantly in their music for decades. Mary's commitment to human rights and the welfare of all was a testament to the beauty of her soul.

    Mary, the best thing that can be said about you is that the world was a better place because you were here. What more can any of us aspire to achieve? You are loved and will be missed.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  61. John Storie

    I got to meet Mary Travers backstage at a show in Portland, OR when I was 10. I was absolutely crazy for Peter Paul and Mary. As a budding guitarist, I loved playing their tunes from "If I had a Hammer" to "Early Mornin' Rain" and 'Blowin in the Wind". They were all so nice to me and Mary in particular took the time to talk to me about what it was like to sing in that group. She asked me "isn't music just so much fun? Im so happy you're learning our songs and sharing your talents!" . Ill never forget hanging with her, and today Im a guitarist and guitar teacher here in LA. Thanks Mary for the inspiration and for setting the stage for me to make music for the rest of my life! Ill miss you sooooo much!

    September 17, 2009 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Bruce

    Getting old s***s. What a loss. How will we go on without knowing that PP&M will always give voice to our hopes and dreams? Now it rests with Joan, and few others. They stood on the steps with mMartin Luther King, and were always there to speak for us. Who will take their place?

    God bless you for speaking up to tyranny when we had no voice but yours.

    Rest in Peace Mary Travers, knowing your songs are still on our lips.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  63. Linda Vulich

    I love Peter Paul and Mary. I grew up with their ideals and music. Mary you are missed. May God be good to you!

    September 17, 2009 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
  64. Robert Stewart

    R.I.P. Mary Travers (of Peter, Paul & Mary). This maks me sad. Peter, Paul & Mary, as a group, was a huge influence on my love of music and singing, from a very early age. Blowin' In the Wind, If I Had a Hammer, Puff the Magic Dragon, Leaving on a Jet Plane. These songs introduced me to Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger, Woody Gutherie and other important song writers. Mary Travers also spoke out constantly on both human and civil rights. I'm going to grab my guitar now and sing a few songs in her memory.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Beth

    Some of my fondest childhood memories are of listening to Peter, Paul, and Mary albums with my dad, who has sadly now passed as well. Mary's lovely, melodic voice was so gentle and soothing.

    Henry Gibson was a hoot; I enjoyed his performances on Laugh-In and as a grouchy, straight-laced judge on Boston Legal.

    Mary and Henry will be missed.

    September 17, 2009 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Waldo

    I am a child of the 60's and loved PP&M's music for all these years. What most touched me was their commitment to the ideals that bond them to me.

    In the late 80's they were the first to come to the Philippines to do a celebration concert day after the revolution which restored democracy and deposed a Dictator giant and his military might.. made possible by ordinary, simple folks who stood up, prayed and sang in the midst of chaos and gave the world "People Power".

    September 17, 2009 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Dorian

    So sad to hear about Mary Travers – I grew up with PP&M, as have my children. Used to sing my kids to sleep with their songs. RIP Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
  68. DillyRat

    Love you Mary

    September 17, 2009 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  69. matt ganis

    the joy of going to a ppm concert was seeing the faces of 4 different generations all enjoying every single minute of the concert. the songs, the personal anecdotes, their gentle souls. i do not shed tears very often but this morning was one of those times. RIP, Mary! so many people loved you.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  70. Suzanne

    Sorry to hear of Mary's passing. Besides the albums of Peter, Paul and Mary she recorded several of her own albums in the 70's which remain some of my favorites to this day. She was a tremendous entertainer and advocate.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Linda

    The voice of Mary Travers will always resonate with me, and remind me of the battles this country has fought on its own homefront. PP&M brought to life many of the tunes written by Bob Dylan that dealt with our nation's conscience in how it treated all men regardless of religion or race. They also wrote and covered many songs of protest during the turbulence of the 60's and 70's. They could be counted on to appear at many rallies singing songs of freedom and searching for peace. A loving mother and grandmother searching for a more peaceful and loving world is now at peace herself. God bless, Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Lynn Harris

    The first concert I ever went to as a kid was Peter, Paul and Mary. Loved them from then on. We had tickets to take my daughter with us to see them two years ago, but they had to cancel due to Mary's health. She will be missed in more ways than I can imagine. She was one of the good ones.

    My wife has so far beaten cancer (9 years)...I wish Mary had the same good fortune.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:40 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Mitch

    One gray night it happened, Mary Travers came no more and Puff that mighty dragon, he ceased his fearless roar.

    Go in Peace, Mary. May your memory live forever.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Kathy Paulson

    My 15 yr old niece called me last night in tears. I took her to her first Peter, Paul & Mary concert when she was about 6 yrs. Then, as I got in my car a few minutes ago, I heard Mary singing and I just broke down completely. I already miss her tremendously, but her legacy will live forever ( I hope). Thanks for everything Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:34 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Annelies

    Although Peter, Paul and Mary were together as a group longer than I've even been alive, I was lucky enough to have seen them in concert several times. Most recently I had bought a ticket to see them in the Washington, DC, area and was sad to learn about a month before the concert that Mary would be unable to perform. It was a bittersweet evening last month, watching the duo of Peter and Noel Paul perform. The progressive movement has lost a huge voice with the passing of Mary Travers. Remember the lyrics of "Light one Candle": "Don't let the light go out! Let it shine through our love and our tears." Mary's influence is a bright light that will continue to shine.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Barbara

    I have all of their music. My favorite group of all time. I saw more than one concert and it saddens me to hear of her passing. I thought she was beautiful. It is truly a sad day. 🙁

    September 17, 2009 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Penny Clodfelter

    Echoing sentiments already posted, Mary's beautiful voice and influence will continue to be heard and felt for future generations. Another glorious voice added to the growing chorus above.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  78. George

    From PPM's first LP: "Two cellos playing guitars, and an angel..."

    September 17, 2009 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Elayne

    After a Peter, Paul and Mary concert in Rochester, N.Y., in about 1964 when I was about 16, I sneaked backstage and met Mary Travers. I asked her whether she knew an acquaintance of mine who owned a cafe in Greenwich Village and how he was. How naive - as if everyone in the Village knew one another! She did not know him, but she was very kind and did not treat me like the silly kid I was. (I can't say the same for Peter Yarrow.) She was a lovely person.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
  80. TM

    ...I see a lot of questions..the answer is blowin' in the wind. RIP Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Joanne Stefano

    I was sixteen years old when I saw my first PP&M concert. It was the beginning of a life-long love affair. She was a kind and generous soul who dedicated her life to civil rights and freedom around the world. God rest you, Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Linda

    Puff's tears are surely falling like rain right now. 🙁 I will miss this gentle beautiful voice.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Michael Jasinski

    A generation of young people coming of age in the 1960's became more aware of people and issues outside their family units through the magic of the vocals and lyrics of Peter, Paul, and Mary. We realized that the words were to be listened to and that music was not just for dancing.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Patty Boyle

    It is so sad to realize I will never see Peter Paul & Mary in concert again!
    My heart goes out to her family & to Peter & Paul.

    It is a huge loss!

    Peace Mary

    September 17, 2009 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  85. Lee

    Although I never saw them in concert, I grew up with their songs of protest and social activism. In times like these, where financial markets aren't very stable, the political landscape is bleak and we're involved in yet another war on foreign soil, where are the social singers/song writers of today? A sad, sad day. Rest in peace, Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  86. Natalie

    Mary Travers was my folk-music idol. The first LP album I ever purchased was "Peter, Paul and Mary in Concert," and I played it until it wore out. Thank you, Mary, for sharing that amazing voice with the world, and for raising it in support of so many causes.

    September 17, 2009 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  87. faye

    John Denver wrote Leaving on a jett plane but ,Peter Paul and Mary made it a number one !!!!!! God bless you Mary Faye

    September 17, 2009 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  88. gabi

    I too grew up with Peter, Paul and Mary. The first song I new all the words to was probably Lemon Tree. I am fortunate to have been able to see them in concert when I was younger and it was great!!

    September 17, 2009 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Jason T

    Thank you for finally posting about it 🙂 there was next to nothing on cnn when i posted, now there is 🙂 I truthfully wish I have meet her before her passing. My mother and father, well whom where into the movement, have talked with her multiple times before and after performances they did in the Denver area and have always been a special place in our hearts. So many of the performers from that era helped influence the views of freedom and where down to earth people that you could actually talk to.

    September 17, 2009 at 11:55 am | Report abuse |
  90. Debra

    I will miss them both! Rest peacefully!

    September 17, 2009 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
  91. wow

    First musical performance I ever attended-Peter, Paul, and Mary-196?-very big deal for me-I was probably 12 or 13 at the time.

    September 17, 2009 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
  92. Shocker

    Wow....its sooo sad!! We are really losing some great people and icons this year. When I look at the new generation of celebrities we are truly in bad shape.!!!

    September 17, 2009 at 8:13 am | Report abuse |
  93. MGD

    I remember a starry night laying on a blanket listening to a Peter, Paul and Mary concert. It was magical. Peace to you Mary.

    September 17, 2009 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
  94. ella a.

    There's no need to deny it. This is a sad, sad summer - summer of death please pass us by.

    September 17, 2009 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  95. Jason T

    What saddens me is that Mary Travers being from one of the most influential folk groups of the generation (and all the awards and sales shows that), which other new sites report about her death but CNN says nothing but this little blurp. Does the deaths of people whom help activism during the 60's and 70's with major hits that even people of my generation know of not matter?

    September 16, 2009 at 11:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • CNN Entertainment Senior Producer David Daniel

      Jason: Don't fret. Our news story on Travers is up; the blog entry is shorter and thus was ready sooner.

      September 17, 2009 at 1:38 am | Report abuse |
  96. Fred Tuttle

    I loved the "Peter Paul and Mommy" record when I was a kid.

    How many other records can claim to have a great song written from the point of view of a person being swallowed alive by a boa constrictor???

    Black comedy of the highest order.

    Now if only Lady GaGa would cover that song!!!!

    September 16, 2009 at 11:10 pm | Report abuse |

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