At Houston Assisted Living Facility, Resident With Alzheimer’s Recreates Her 1945 Seventeen Magazine Ad

For a Boston Store trenchcoat known as 'The Paratrooper'

Headshot of Richard Horgan

Heading into the holiday weekend, the staff at Silverado Kingwood Memory Care, a facility in a northwest suburb of Houston, did something pretty special. They worked with a photographer, video crew, make-up artist and current resident Betty Mohr to recreate a print ad published in the April 1945 issue of Seventeen magazine.

The ad was for Boston Store, a department store chain founded in 1896 in Wisconsin. Mohr, then 17, was pictured wearing rain boots, a trenchoat and holding an umbrella. Silverado Kingwood Memory Care staff tracked down a raincoat similar to the one worn for the ad by Mohr, now 88 and afflicted with Alzheimer’s. From a Houston Chronicle report by fashion and beauty editor Joy Sewing:

In front of the camera, Mohr balanced herself with a cane in one hand, an umbrella–like the one from ad–in the other. She posed and posed.

“Every time her face lights up is a moment of joy,” said [daughter Lynn] Lucas, gently holding her mother’s hand. “It’s wonderful to see. Right, mom, every day is a new day?” Mohr smiled and batted her eyes.

The slide show embedded to the article is a treat. It cycles through the entire photo-shoot process and includes several shots of the original magazine ad. The copy below Mohr in the spring of 1945 read: ‘Curly… Hi-School Shop’s lamb of a mascot, endorses The Paratrooper for “swinging in the rain.”’ The issue was published shortly before the end of World War II.

Also, as our now-retired pal Jim Romenesko might note, Sewing is a most appropriate last name for a reporter covering fashion.

@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.
Publish date: July 3, 2017 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT