Searcy Arkansas was once home to the mother of a now-famous star called Cher.....

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Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Advantage
https://activerain.com/droplet/5l5M

Georgia Holt

This photo was loaned to me by my friend Sherry, whose mother was Frances Hall Quattlebaum.  Frances was a colorful lady who was admired by the folks who lived in Searcy.  Frances passed away on Sept 15, 1999 and upon hearing of her death the newspaper editor received a call from a lady who called herself Georgia Holt.

She was calling just to say how much she'd loved her friend Frances and how they'd played together as teenagers.  Georgia was born Jackie Jean Crouch near Searcy Arkansas. She came to live with her Aunt Zela Croom during the late 1930's when her parents separated.  She worked in the Croom Cafe, reportedly the only restaurant in Searcy at the time.  During that time she met Frances and they became good friends.  A quote by Georgia from the Daily Citizen Jan 1 1991 says,  "Frances was the prettiest girl in Searcy when I was there."

Georgia went on to do some show business herself and watched her daughter Cher become a superstar.  We in Searcy have to just call our claim to fame having been home to Cher's mother who was evidently lovely herself.  She brought Cher for a visit once and Frances and her husband Ivan flew to Hollywood to visit Georgia.  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNiu33CYo5M is a link to a youtube video that has a good history of Cher with quotes and pictures of Ms. Holt.

Sherry would also be interested in hearing from anyone who might know about Ms. Holt and where she is today.

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Rainmaker
1,246,808
Steven L. Smith
King of the House Home Inspection, Inc. - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham WA Home Inspector

Godmother,

I do not want to hurt your feelings, but that is not Cher.

I am still standing in my pitcher plant waiting for something to happen.

godson

Feb 13, 2010 08:52 AM #1
Rainmaker
1,075,153
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR

Godson Nutsy, either go up or down.  I'd suggest up but Mr. Charles would hope down.  You're wasting time in that plant and I have not received my valentine for today.  Godmothers need to be pampered. 

Feb 13, 2010 08:54 AM #2
Rainmaker
1,246,808
Steven L. Smith
King of the House Home Inspection, Inc. - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham WA Home Inspector

Godmother,

It is only the 13th. My tip to your that the woman is not Cher, is a nice gift to you. That way you will not be embarrassed when Mr Charles or that nasty old Mrs Kate say: Mrs Barbara, that is not  Cher. I am still half and half by the way,

Nutsy

Feb 13, 2010 09:04 AM #3
Rainmaker
316,251
James Downing - Metro DC Houses Team REALTORS®, CRS, GRI, ABR,MRP, MilRes
Real Living | At Home - Washington, DC
When Looking to Buy or Sell - Make the Right Move

OH MY !  I love Cher!  Who knew her mother was from your town!  Very cool.

Feb 13, 2010 10:11 AM #4
Rainer
251,021
Don Thompson
Donthomp Associates - Sunnyvale, CA

Cher and Mother

Ancestry of Cher PARENTS
1 Cherilyn ("Cher") Sarkisian, b. El Centro, Cal., 20 May 1946
2 John Sarkisian, b. ... , d. ... [mid-1980s]
m. ... , div. ...
3 Jackie Jean Crouch ("Georgia Holt"), b. Sharp Co., Ark., 9 June 1927 [later husbands include John Southall and Gilbert LaPiere]
Feb 13, 2010 10:18 AM #5
Rainmaker
1,075,153
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR

James, I hope your snow is almost gone.  What you sent us is now melting quickly.

Don, were you aware of this amazing thing?  I see you did research.  I read that she divorced the dad three times and married him three times.  Jan 4 91 is the date of the newspaper article.

Feb 14, 2010 03:47 AM #6
Rainmaker
1,246,808
Steven L. Smith
King of the House Home Inspection, Inc. - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham WA Home Inspector

Godmother,

I posted a valentine to you over at the bosses site.

Nutsy

Feb 14, 2010 06:02 AM #7
Anonymous
Sherry Person

This is a great picture of my mother's friend Jackie Jean Crouch  aka Georgia Holt.  I remember once when Georgia visited Searcy and Cher was with her,  they came to our house but Cher was not impressed with Searcy and would not get out of the car.

The next time Georgia was in Searcy she brought Cher's half-sister, Georganne.  She is beautiful and later became a regular on a soap opera.  I have pictures of them and will post them as soon as I can find them.  My parents, Ivan and Frances Quattlebaum, had so many snapshots it will take a while to locate them.

I would love to know how Georgia is doing and where she is living.

Sherry

Feb 14, 2010 06:48 AM #8
Rainer
251,021
Don Thompson
Donthomp Associates - Sunnyvale, CA

More on Georgia Holt.

August 07, 1978  People Magazine
  
After Seven Failed Marriages, Cher's Ma (Chastity's Grandma) Takes Her Own Star Turn

By Suzy Kalter

I think that the women in our family have never grown up.

Georgia Holt, 51, may have a point. She's had six husbands, and her incumbent "fellow" (as she calls him) is 30, two years younger than her daughter, who just happens to be Cher Bono All-man. But who needs to grow up? Georgia may be a grandma, but right now she's possibly the hottest property in the family (which also includes Cher's half sister, actress Georganne La Piere, 26, a veteran of the ABC soap General Hospital).

It all began for Georgia last month when her singers' workshop class graduated with a gig at Hollywood's gaychic Studio One. Immediately Dinah, Merv and Mike jostled to book her. Eagles' rocker Don Henley found two songs for her, and Columbia Records proffered a contract. Also, after not speaking for several years, Georgia's become close again with Cher, who led the standing ovation at Studio One. "Now that we have something in common, she has welcomed me into her world," says Mom.

Just a few years back, Georgia concedes, she'd sold her piano and car for rent money. Now she says, with the same shattering frankness that was part of her daughter's popularity despite her outrageous life: "I know that a record company might want to sign me just because I'm Cher's mother. I'd like to have a career, but I'm not going to be a novelty or a flash in the pan. A lot of people say I can do it."

People have been saying that since she was born Jackie Jean Crouch in Kensett, Ark. Her father was a 17-year-old baker. Her mother was 13. While Dad moved from town to town looking for work, he taught his daughter how to sing and play guitar. At 6 she was performing on an Oklahoma City radio station, and by 10 she had sung with bandleader Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys.

The impoverished dad and precocious daughter began hitchhiking west, stopping in saloons where Jackie Jean (she took her new name at 21 from a friend's home state) would sing for nickels and dimes. "When I saw the movie Paper Moon, I said, 'That's my life,' " Georgia recalls. "Only Daddy didn't sell Bibles—he sold me." Not too successfully, however. She remembers spending nights in Salvation Army shelters and having cast-off clothing pressed on her. Despite her stint on radio and a string of talent and beauty contest victories, she spent most of her time shuttling between her separated parents and bouncing through (by her count) 17 different junior high schools.

While still a teenager and working in a Fresno donut shop, she met John Sarkisian. "Johnny was very charming and could talk you into anything," she recalls. Sarkisian, in fact, talked her into a quickie Reno wedding. "I left him the day after," confesses Georgia. "I knew I didn't want to be married. But he told me to try it for three months, and if I didn't like it, then I could walk out. Well, before three months was out I was pregnant with Cher."

The newlyweds split within a year. "In those days it wasn't right to sleep with someone if you weren't married," says Georgia. "So I ended up getting married a lot." After her seventh mismatch (she married Sarkisian twice), Georgia opened Granny's Cabbage Patch, a quilt-and-bed boutique in Brentwood. It was there that she met Craig Spencer, a Washington, D.C. antique dealer 21 years her junior. "I knew deep inside he was a good person, but I thought he was interested in me just so he could tell people he went to bed with Cher's mother," she remembers.

Spencer, however, had only Georgia on his mind. A month after their first meeting he sold his shop in Georgetown, moved into her Encino home and began referring to Cher and her sister as "the kids." Both Spencer and Georgia are deeply religious and burble to each other in a private baby talk to avoid the scorn of skeptics. For example, the "Shorty" they refer to is not Georgia's ex-son-in-law Bono but God. Spencer has suggested an eighth trip to the altar, but Georgia has so far demurred. At her 50th-birthday party he asked what she wanted. When Georgia mentioned her long-abandoned singing career, Spencer took charge of the boutique and insisted she enroll in the school run by Phil Moore, onetime coach to Lena Home and Diahann Carroll. "I think Georgia has a better voice than Cher," Craig says loyally, and she does indeed have the same tone without the nasal quality. "And I think Cher could have done a lot more for her mother than she has."

Lately, though, Cher has given Georgia a concert grand and some flashy hand-me-downs, and has been chatting up record companies. And at Studio One Cher's personal makeup man arrived to tone down Mom's shiny cheeks. Meanwhile Georgia gave up her granny glasses, exchanged her matronly hairstyle for a frosted blond coif and honed her size-10 figure with workouts at a local gym and a no-liquor diet. "Even now, people think I'm rich because I look rich, or because I've been married to rich men, or because my daughter is rich. But I'm barely hanging on by my fingernails," Georgia admits. "I'm still looking for a pot."

Perhaps, but Georgia Sarkisian Alcaid Southall Collins La Piere Holt plans to use Jackie Jean Crouch when she signs her first recording contract. Her own mother, Lynda, now 64, a self-proclaimed psychic living in New-hall, Calif., forecasts that "Jack's going to be a big star." Observes her daughter: "I would love to have been well adjusted, but then I'd be like everybody else. There is a total uniqueness that I wouldn't trade that comes from being in such a wacko family."


Georgia apparently is still alive and lives in Malibu, CA 
John Sarkisian died 20 April 2005 in Los Angeles, California from cancer.

Feb 15, 2010 01:45 AM #9
Rainmaker
1,246,808
Steven L. Smith
King of the House Home Inspection, Inc. - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham WA Home Inspector

Godmother,

If these people say that is share or Cher or whatever, than who am I to argue?

Nutsy

Feb 15, 2010 01:25 PM #10
Rainmaker
1,075,153
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR

Don!  You did it!  What a story.  Isn't it amazing that you can pull up stories from 1978 about anyone!  Google and wikipedia are two of my favorite places.

Godson Nutsy, the people on my blog are SO smart!  I'd never argue with them if I were you. 

Feb 15, 2010 01:37 PM #11
Rainmaker
314,256
Carol Culkin
Reece & Nichols - Leawood, KS
Overland Park

Barbara - With all due respect to Cher, she is much prettier. 

Feb 16, 2010 03:03 PM #12
Anonymous
Tammi Hartman

I first heard that Cher's mother was from Kensett/Searcy area in 1998 on a radio station when I lived in Crosse.tt, AR.  I have told others this, only to be poo'pooed.  Thanks! 

Here are some other things the old folks around here have told me:  That Susan Lucci was from White County originally, left here, changed her name, and never looked back.  From the Pangburn area, out off 110.

That Liz Taylor married a man that originally came from the Clay area.  That he had two children that she raised with him. 

Haven't ever looked for any of this information

Aug 01, 2011 04:31 PM #13
Rainmaker
1,075,153
Barbara S. Duncan
RE/MAX Advantage - Searcy, AR
GRI, e-PRO, Executive Broker, Searcy AR

Tammi, I don't know about the other stars but perhaps some of my sleuths will have heard of these things and help you solve the mystery.

Aug 02, 2011 01:22 AM #14
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