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She was known for her no–nonsense advice, written through compassionate words. Pauline Phillips, better known as "Dear Abby," passed away Wednesday night at the age of 94 after suffering from Alzheimer's Disease.
But many Sioux Citians will remember her, not just as a popular advice columnist, but as a hometown girl.
Her writing made her a household name, but it was her humble upbringing at this modest home on Jackson Street, that makes her part of Sioux City history.
"She was a hometown girl who did well and I think everybody was proud of her," said local historican George Lindblade.
"Even as a kid, growing up, I thought it was pretty cool that they were from Sioux City, both her and her sister," said Sioux City Public Museum Director Steve Hansen.
"Ann and Abby ARE Sioux City," says the Sioux City Journal's Bruce Miller. "Both of them loved Sioux City and they were big supporters of just everything we did here."
Abby and her sister, Ann Landers, were first known as the Friedman sisters. Born to Russian immigrants, they helped put Sioux City on the map, with the help of millions of newspaper readers nationwide.
Ann may be considered more famous for her advice column, "Ask Ann." But "Dear Abby" had a down–to–earth common sense that poured through in her writing.
Bruce Miller met Abby when he joined the Sioux City Journal 30 years ago.
"She'd call you up and say, 'Bruce, how's it going in Sioux City,' and she'd want to know what was happening here and she'd fill me in on something that was going on," he said.
Meanwhile, she was making waves by answering reader questions. Her column was syndicated in more than 12–hundred newspapers, and read by 95 million people a day.
"For me, it was the end of an era, because I grew up with Ann and Abby and even though she wasn't writing this anymore, it kind of seemed final, it's like, now that period of our lives is over," said Miller.
In 1964, "Dear Abby wrote: "The purpose of life is to amount to something and have it make some difference that you lived at all."
Safe to say she leaves a legacy here, in her hometown, and in homes across the country.
As for her advice column, "Dear Abby" was taken over full time by her daughter, Jeanne in 2002. She'll continue to answer reader questions in the future.