In a world of saints and sinners, Santa Barbara’s Mary Duvall was a true angel. She certainly did God’s work — at least for a time — in the stunning California city.
Who Is Mary Duvall?
Sister Mary Duvall believed that everybody deserved a second chance – and if need be, they could also have a third, a fourth, a fifth. So it was in that spirit that she tracked down her younger sister, Christie, and requested her presence at their mother’s upcoming birthday party.
“It would mean so much to her…[she’s] not drinking again if that’s what you’re worried about.” Off their sisterly chat, Mary planned to surprise Christie with dinner – her treat -and while she waited for Christie’s return to the Capwell home (where she was employed as a nanny), she made the acquaintance of the family’s self-professed black sheep, Mason.
His over-solicitous manner tickled her, but it was Mason who was in for the biggest shock of all. The woman he had exhausted so much effort flirting with was a nun!
And if that wasn’t enough of an impediment to a future with Mason – attractive though she may find him – soon the pair found themselves sitting on opposing sides of a courtroom.
Skeletons In The Closet
When Christie was found battered, bruised, and raped, her chances at survival were slim. She did indeed pull through, but when questioned about the identity of her attacker, Christie pointed an accusatory finger at her boyfriend Ted Capwell.
In actuality, the culprit was Christie and Mary’s stepbrother, Steve Bassett, the lawyer prosecuting Ted! When Mary uncovered the truth, she was assaulted and bound. In the event’s aftermath, Mary exited her convent and renounced her sacred vows.
Santa Barbara Trials and Tribulations
Returning to her trained profession, nursing, Mary found employment as CC Capwell’s caregiver as well as a part-time nurse at a free clinic. A still-smitten Mason continued to endear himself to Mary and she was soon falling hopelessly in love with him – a development that greatly displeased Mason’s former lover (and current stepmother) Gina Demott.
Gina arranged for Mary to witness a supposedly romantic clinch between her and Mason. Mary, in turn, walked out on Mason and resisted listening to his explanations and his many attempts to reconcile.
Instead, she sought comfort in the arms of her former college friend, Dr. Mark McCormick. When he was severely injured in an explosion – and seemed to be on the brink of death – Mary acquiesced to his desire to marry.
But rather than die, Mark recovered… and grew increasingly bitter over his resulting impotency. Mary diligently worked at her marriage but couldn’t understand her husband’s sharp rebukes any time she made sexual advances towards him.
Her feelings of inadequacy and a still-lingering desire for Mason resulted in Mary giving in to her feelings and kissing her ex. Afterward, she fled back to the safety of her convent – resolute in her desire to do penance for the action.
However, Mason followed. A stirring heart to heart ended with Mary’s agreeing to leave her sanctuary and join Mason at a specially-designed mountain paradise. There, they danced and laughed and made love for the first time.
Mary Duvall – The Bitter End
Mary intended to extricate herself from Mark but when she told him of her plans to seek an annulment, Mark beat and raped her. When she learned that she was with child, Mary feared that her violent husband was the father.
Despite his arrest for the attack on Mary, and a Santa Barbara grand jury agreeing to indict him, Mark was able to secure a release on his own recognizance. Deciding that all he needed to do was speak to Mary, face to face, Mark tracked her down and confronted her atop the roof of the Orient Express.
During the ensuing argument, a gust of wind dislodged the giant letter “C” from the establishment’s neon sign [Capwell Hotel] and the offending item crushed Mary under its massive weight.
Though Mason eventually moved on, his love for Mary never wavered. When he was shot and had an out-of-body experience, Mason was greeted by Mary, who revealed that she had been serving as his personal guardian angel.
Furthermore, she encouraged him to not only return to the land of the living but to begin his life anew with Julia and the daughter whom they shared. Catch up with the actress who portrayed her — Harley Jane Kozak — and her Santa Barbara memories by clicking here.