Actor offers to help pay tuition of teen soldier to be sent to Iraq

Associated Press • Apr 1, 2007 at 12:45 PM

PHOENIX - Actor Alec Baldwin was so moved by the story of an 18-year-old Army soldier who is scheduled to serve in Iraq, he's going to help pay for her college education after she leaves the military.

After reading a March 4 New York Times story about Pvt. Resha Kane's last day with family and friends before going for training to prepare for serving in Iraq, Baldwin - not his people - tracked down Kane's mother at a discount store where she works to offer his assistance, his spokesman said.

"I didn't know what to say," said Patricia Kane, Resha Kane's mother. "And then I asked him if he could send me his autograph. I've never met a star, let alone talked to one on the phone."

Baldwin, who appeared in "Glengarry Glen Ross" and "The Departed" and most recently won a Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award for his performance in the weekly NBC comedy "30 Rock," was vacationing in London and could not be reached for comment.

Baldwin's spokesman, Matthew Hiltzik, said when Baldwin read the Times article, it made him think of his own daughter, 11-year-old Ireland.

Hiltzik said the actor would meet the Kane family in Mohave Valley and give them a check, which will be in addition to the $37,000 the Army will give Kane for college. A date for the meeting will be decided next week, he said.

Although Baldwin, 48, has been a vocal critic against the war in Iraq, Hiltzik said supporting the troops who are fighting there is important to the actor.

"He himself tried to find the family, and he was very happy he was able to connect with them," Hiltzik said. "It's a great example that people of different backgrounds can agree on the importance of supporting our troops."

Patricia Kane said when she heard Baldwin's voice on the other line, she didn't know what to think. "I said, ‘No way. You're lying.' I was just blown away," she said. "I am totally shocked and awed this has happened." Resha Kane said she was just as dumbfounded when her mother told her the news. "It's very generous," she said from Fort Hood in Texas, where she is undergoing further training before her unit is deployed to Iraq in September. "Actors have all this money, and it's a good thing to see them do something other than for themselves and show some character and use their money wisely." Kane, a chemical operations specialist in the Army, said she wants to be a biochemist but is not sure what university she wants to attend once she leaves the military in three years.

LOS ANGELES - Marie Osmond and husband Brian Blosil are divorcing after 20 years of marriage, the pair announced Friday.

Osmond, 47, and Blosil, a record producer, have eight children, some of whom are adopted. The two married in a Mormon ceremony in October 1986, and briefly separated in 2000.

"Though our marriage is ending, we continue to have a very amicable relationship. Our marriage has always been a faithful one and neither of us is assigning fault for the divorce," they said in a statement released by Osmond's publicist.

"Our children, as always, are our top priority and in our deep love for them we will continue to jointly fulfill our roles as active parents in their daily lives," they said.

Osmond earned fame at age 13 with the hit song "Paper Roses," and starred with her brother, Donny Osmond, on television's "Donny and Marie Show" during the 1970s.

She and her first husband Stephen Craig divorced in 1985. Osmond also owns a successful collectibles doll company.

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