The public has taken a look at Micky Dolenz and labeled him “a loveable clown,” but the public isn’t generally aware of the difficult times Micky has been through. The two most trying times in his life were probably the time he spent on crutches and the time his father passed away. His mother, Mrs. Robert Scott, tells you about those times below…
When Micky was five years old and in kindergarten we noticed he had started limping. We took him to the doctor and for two weeks they diagnosed it as one of two things, though they weren’t sure which. He had x-rays taken and all that and they found out it was Leg Perthes, a bone disease.
What this is—in the socket of your hip, where the leg and the hip bone meet, the hip bone wears itself down and becomes flat. Later on the bone starts growing back… that is if you’re off your feet entirely. So they put Micky on crutches. To this day they don’t know what causes it.
When Micky went into first grade we put him in a private school so they could help him. But you know how children can be cruel sometimes without trying to be. I remember one day I went to pick Micky up at school and I found him in the middle of the playground just sobbing. Some of the children had taken his crutches away and his leg was strapped up, so he was really helpless.
I also remember Micky wanting to play baseball so badly. Finally after it was over, I’m sure he appreciated being able to walk and run much more than most children.
Very rapid recovery
Micky’s case was a very rapid recovery. He was on crutches for a year and two months. After checking around we found three to four years was the average length of recovery time. That’s how long it takes for the bone to deteriorate and grow back completely.
Today it’s healed as much as it can heal. He was left with a slight limp. He has a lot less strength in that leg. It still bothers him because it was left a little longer than the other one. It’s sometimes painful if he stands for too long.
The amazing thing, though, is that Micky knew his leg would heal fast. You see, we’ve always belonged to the Church of Religious Science, which is more a way of life than a religion. If we miss church on Sunday, nothing bad is going to happen, we can practice what we believe at home.
It’s mainly the realization that there is something greater than we are… and this gave Micky a great deal of faith during that time and again when his father passed away.
Micky takes over
I imagine the saddest day in Micky’s life was the day his father passed away. But Micky took it so well, his whole attitude seemed to change. Even though he didn’t need to, Micky quit Valley College because he felt he was man of the house now and he had to look after us.
The insurance that was left for us was not a five million dollar policy, but it did provide for all the children’s education and for us to have a comfortable life. So it wasn’t necessary for Micky to quit school, but his attitude was to take care of his sisters and myself. He tried to acquire an attitude of maturity. Some of it was put on because he was only 17, but he tried very hard to become more responsible than he had been previously.
Attitude of maturity
He began to go out of his way to check with me when he was going out. He had done this before, but when I speak of his attitude of taking over, I mean he tried to be more mature and cooperate with me. Going to work at anything he could find was his way of letting us know that he had realized what had happened… and that it was up to him to help instead of be helped, in any way that was needed.
He would even watch the baby. It didn’t matter what I asked him to do, he was more than happy to do it. He still corrects Coco now and then, not as a domineering father, but more as a help to me. In his attitude of trying very hard to be mature, to work, to take over the responsibilities, whether it was fixing the sink or watching the babies, he would do anything. I wanted him to go back to school, but he said no, his place was working and seeing that everything was okay.