Not only did fans of Doris Day learn of her heartbreaking death on the news and via social media, but her grandson did as well, as he is claiming he was banned from seeing his grandmother in the final days of her life due to her manager.
Ryan Melcher, the son of Doris’ late son Terry Melcher, revealed that he had “not been allowed to see his grandmother for quite some time,” because of his parents’ divorce. “When I was invited by Doris to dinner a few years ago after my father’s untimely death in November 2004 (melanoma), her new business manager, a former fan, intervened and asked me to meet him at the family-owned Cypress Inn here in Carmel, California,” Ryan, a realtor, wrote on Facebook.
“I was asked by this man: ‘Why do you want to see Doris?’ I was shocked not only at the question, but also that it was coming from someone who was a stranger and outsider,” he continued on the social media platform. “I just responded, ‘um … she is my grandmother!’ He replied, ‘I’m afraid you aren’t going to be able to see your grandmother,’ citing the divorce between my parents as his excuse.”
“Looking back, I should have said more; should have drove to her home and not let a stranger come between us, but unfortunately the tall fences and 24-hour guard under her new business manager’s direction prevented me taking a stand and reconnecting with my family. She had been so happy to talk to me and we were both excited for our upcoming dinner together just a week before, and this man was clearly manipulating the situation,” Ryan added.
However, while he may have not seen his grandmother before she passed, Ryan is still happy for the time he was given with her. “She instilled a drive and confidence that I will carry with me the rest of my life,” he said, adding, “I will forever be grateful for the time I had with both my father and my grandmother. When I was younger our family was so close and I was so fortunate to have such special people raise me. It’s taught me to live in the moment and not leave things unsaid. It’s a hard truth, however it is my truth and one I hope others can learn from.”
The iconic actress died from a serious case of pneumonia at the age of 97 on Monday, May 13. The legend received plenty of tributes and kind words, including one from Goldie Hawn. “The great Doris Day left us and took a piece of the sun with her. She brighten our lives and lived out her life with dignity. May she rest peacefully,” the Overboard star wrote on Twitter. Stella McCartney also had a lovely message.
“The one, the only, the woman who inspired so much of what I do … Doris Day I love you, my calamity Jane,” Paul McCartney‘s 47-year-old daughter wrote. “An iconic woman who I was hugely honored to meet and share precious moments with. Rest in peace.”
Family, friends and fans will always remember Doris.