“She Was an Old Friend From My Past”
While on the set for Gone With The Wind, an assistant approached Clark Gable with an unusual request.
“I told Mr. Gable that someone wanted to see him. She said she was an old friend from the past and that it was urgent that he stop what he’s doing and see her immediately.
At first the famous actor scoffed and brushed the suggestion aside. “He didn’t even bother to give me an answer,” said Irv, “so I went back to the entrance and relayed the message to the woman.
“But she wouldn’t take no for an answer. She pulled out a pen and a small pad of paper and began writing a long note. It took her about ten minutes to write it, but finally she tore the pages from the pad and handed them to me. She said, ‘I think he might want to see me now. This’ll do it.’
“So, I slowly walked back on the set and tapped Mr. Gable on the shoulder. He kind of gave me his gruff look, and without saying anything he spotted the papers I was holding and snatched them out of my hand.
“I could see his expression change as he read the woman’s comments. He had only read the first page when he looked up and asked where she was. Then he excused himself from the set and quickly walked away.
“About fifteen minutes later he walked back, took me by the arm and pulled me aside. ‘She was an old friend from the past.’ He started to walk away but thought the better of it. He said, ‘She was someone I loved a long time ago. And I’d appreciate it if you’d keep it to yourself. Or at least until I’m long gone, if you know what I mean.’
“On the next to last day of the shoot, Mr. Gable walked over to me and said, ‘Remember that lady who gave you the note?’ I nodded. He said, ‘She was a good woman and fell on tough times. I helped her out and everything’s going to be OK.'”
“The strange thing is the night before I had a dream where I kept running after Mr. Gable trying to hand him a piece of paper.”