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Carol Perkins: Lanny Nunn and Olivia de Havilland

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By Carol Perkins

What has happened to Metcalfe County High School graduates has always been of great interest to me. Although I have kept up with Lanny Nunn since we graduated back in the sixties, I really haven't known much about his career and where his life has led him.

A few years ago, I reached out to Lanny (Lannes William Nunn) and his sister Stephanie, who were living in Bowling Green, and Judy and I had lunch with them and visited in their home. Stephanie retired early because of health problems, but Lanny continued to work as a hairdresser, two or three days a week, spanning a career of over fifty-seven years. Lanny was younger than us, but he grew up in Muncie Court (a town kid) and was part of our lives. His father, JT Nunn of Nunn Drugstore and his mother Dorothy opened their homes to us teens.

Recently, Lanny and I talked and he sent a story I want to share that involves long-term penpals he established with Academy Award winning actress Olivia de Havilland (Gone with the Wind), whom he met while working at the Executive Inn Salon in Owensboro. She was in town to present an Award.

In Lanny's words:

When she arrived at the Saloon, we rushed to treat her like the star she was. She was about my height and had the sweetest smile. In one hand she carried a matching purse and the in the other, a book. Once I draped a cape around her, I brushed her hair and led her to the shampoo bowl.

She said in the softest voice, "You do know I have a tint on my hair." I replied that I did, and after I shampooed her hair and returned to the styling booth, she took a picture from her purse and asked if I would try to do that style. As I seated her in the dryer, a young girl came for an autograph. Ms. De Havilland graciously signed her paper, and then I pulled the drier bubble over her curls. While she was under the dryer, other clients wanted to know about my client. When it was time to comb her, I placed a drape over her shoulders, and we returned to the comb-out booth. She asked if she could rest her feet on the bar. Her nylons and beige dress reminded me of a sweet grandmother.

She was more than pleased with my work and asked to return the next day for a comb-out, the third day for another shampoo, and the fourth day for a comb-out. (Her tip was more than gracious.) She and I would work together for four days.

During our time together, she shared that she was writing her autobiography that was not to come out until after her death. I asked for a copy, and she assured me a signed copy would be ready for me at that time. We agreed to keep in touch over the years and if she were ever back in Owensboro, she would call on me.

We never met again, but were penpals for decades, exchanging birthday cards and letters since 1978. When she failed to respond to my last letter, her secretary wrote on her behalf, explaining she was not able to reply but asked the secretary to write for her. She lived in Paris most of her life and was there when she died in her sleep. I'm regretful we never met again.
Part 2: Carol Perkins: Where are they now?

Carol's most recent book, based on a true story, The Case of the Missing Ring, is available through Amazon, both paperback and ebook. You can contact her at

This story was posted on 2021-07-23 08:26:35
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Catching up with MCHS grads, Lanny and Stephanie

2021-07-23 - Bowling Green, KY - Photo from family collection.
Carol Perkins catches up with Metcalfe County High School alumni Lanny (Lannes William Nunn) and his sister Stephanie who are living in Bowling Green. Lanny was a long-term pen pal with Academy Award winning actress Olivia de Havilland (Gone with the Wind), whom he met while working at the Executive Inn Salon in Owensboro. Carol's article this week gives details of their meeting.

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