Former Mouseketeer in Memphis gets help from community

22 September 2023

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG) — He’s lived among the stars and even been one himself, but in his later years, a Highland Heights man could use a little help after a burst pipe forced him to live without plumbing for months.

Ric Morgan has been experiencing a few lows, but he’s seen plenty of highs. He served as a theatrical and entertainment caterer, spending 10 years on the road with Reba McEntire, Garth Brooks and others.

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In 1955, Ric Morgan was one of the original Walt Disney Mickey Mouse Club Mouseketeers. An old photo even shows him with actress Annette Funicello.

“Well you know, they say most people have 15 minutes of fame. I had 65 years,” he said.

Ric Morgan hugs Alice Harrington on the steps of his Memphis home.

Ric retired from the bright lights and settled back in Memphis at his modest family home. He brought joy to many throughout his long career. 

Later he used his catering talents to cook weekly dinners at his church for the homeless. Those who love him are happy to return the favor by passing on a little help and joy to him.

Ric may have had close connections to Hollywood and the stars but unfortunately in the 1950s, when he was a Mouseketeer, the contracts were not written to favor the children, so he gets no money from Walt Disney.

He’s like so many, surviving on a small Social Security check.

That’s why his church members reached out to us to see if we could meet up with them so they could pass it on.

Alice Harrington says Ric, her church member, just got out of the hospital and his Highland Heights area home is in need of serious repairs. She contacted WREG to help.

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“He has been a helper to the homeless, to the people who need food. Now, Ric’s in a bad situation,” she said.

We count out the $1,000 donation and make the drive to pass it on to Ric.

Ric is expecting soup but when he answers the door, Alice delivers more than just a meal.

“We at St. Stephens love you, and we want to help you in some way. Channel 3 wants to help even more,” Alice tells him.

Ric held out his hand as Alice passed on the cash.  

“I’m going to have my plumbing fixed,” Ric said. “I haven’t had any water since last year because my pipes froze under the house and burst my hot water heater and it fell through the floor.”

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