Sara “Russell” Lane recently left this message for her fans. For those who don’t know she was critically ill a few months ago but thanks to excellent health care and much love is on the road to recovery. This is her message:
I had bad stomach poisoning and was so sick I blew a hole in my stomach. The Docs say they’ve seen this before. The result was peritonitis, renal failure and the need to spend a week intubated and sometimes in soft restraints so I didn’t pull the tubes out. My dear daughter, Sara, brought me everyone’s good wishes but could only stay for moments at a time. When I transferred to a skilled nursing facility I wasn’t yet able to turn over.
All of that is behind me now. I just got home and feel strong and optimistic again. What a glorious thing to be able to sit in the sun at home and have the luxury of time and strength to read and savor your posts and cards.
Sara Lane with “Aladdin” from the classic Virginian episode “Beloved Outlaw” (5:11). Elizabeth Grainger (Sara Lane) trains a beautiful wild stallion in the hope of competing in the annual Founder’s Day Race in Medicine Bow. In reality Aladdin was an 18-year-old stallion trained as a “trick horse” by veteran horse trainer Ralph McCutcheon. (Thanks to Victoria Snoddy Thompson and INSP).
The year before she starred in The Virginian Sara Lane co-starred with Joan Crawford in William Castle’s menacing thriller I Saw What You Did (1965). The trailer and synopsis for the film is featured elsewhere on this site. Meanwhile here is the first of a number of publicity photographs from the film featuring Sara Lane (credited as Sarah Lane).
A post-Virginian Sara Lane (as Russell Lane) in The Trial Of Billy Jack (1974). Notice her short hair style as she talks on the radio from her jeep approx. 15 seconds into the clip. She can also be seen later into the clip so keep watching. This film was the sequel to Billy Jack (1971). Sara (Russell) Lane also appeared in Billy Jack Goes To Washington in 1977. Her final film appearance to date.
Sara Lane consistently heads the list for the greatest number of searches on my site. She is obviously one of the most popular cast members of The Virginian. There is no doubt the caring sensitivity of her character makes a pleasant change from so many aggressive females on television today. Elizabeth Grainger has grown better with age and the charm of Sara Lane has gained her many new fans.