Mount Vernon News

By Mount Vernon News
April 20, 2012 10:59 am EDT


MOUNT VERNON — Local photographers John and Janis Seavolt have taken pictures of thousands of people, many of them were celebrities including the late Dick Clark.

“You will not find a better person than he was,” said Janis Seavolt.

Seavolt described him as a kind, gentle man who was just as friendly and down-to-earth in person as he appeared on television.


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Seavolt, and her husband John, met the host of “American Bandstand” after taking pictures at a wedding reception in Clark’s restaurant in Columbus. Although Clark was not in the restaurant that day, the manager called the Mount Vernon couple to let them know when he would be available to meet them.

“We expected to see him walk through the front door,” John said. “But he was with customers at another table. He came over, introduced himself and sat down with us.”

John said the music and television icon was not the least bit pretentious.

“He was very likable, very nice and there was no ego about him,” John said about their meeting in 1998.

Janis explained that Clark would have the manager of the restaurant pick him up at the airport instead of hiring a car and driver. She was surprised to learn he did not travel with security.

“There was no one protecting him,” she said. “I asked him why and he said, ‘Why do I need protection? If you are nice to people they won’t hurt you.’”

“He was nice, considerate and down-to-earth — not what you would expect when you meet someone of his stature,” Janis said.

The Seavolts both have photographs taken with Clark who signed a restaurant T-shirt for Janis and agreed to sign a photograph for John if left at the restaurant.

Janis said she remembers rushing home from school to watch Clark on “American Bandstand,” to enjoy the music and dance along with those on television.

“Everyone dreamed of going on television and being on ‘American Bandstand,’” she said.

Clark passed away Tuesday at the age of 82.


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