ABC Afterschool Specials (1972–1997)
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The Woman Who Willed a Miracle 

A blind, mentally retarded infant with cerebral palsy is left in the care of an elderly English woman who refuses to let him die.


Sharron Miller


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Episode credited cast:
Cloris Leachman ... May Lemke
M. Emmet Walsh ... Joe Lempke
Leif Green ... Leslie
Rosemary Murphy ... Gladys
Fran Bennett ... Nurse Matthews
James Noble ... Dr. Edwards
Bruce French ... Doctor Vince
Kirk Cameron ... Willy
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Laura Jacoby Laura Jacoby ... Nancy age 6
Marcello Krakoff Marcello Krakoff ... Danny
Paul Stout Paul Stout ... Leslie age 10
Blair Tefkin Blair Tefkin ... Nancy age 16 and 22 (as Blair Ashleigh Tefkin)


The true story of May Lemke and her son Leslie. May is a middle-aged nurse and mother of grown children, who, along with her husband, agrees to take in an abandoned baby boy with mental and physical handicaps. Leslie is blind and brain-damaged, but May patiently teaches him how to eat, walk, and talk. Leslie shows an interest in music, but it isn't until he is a teenager that his special ability reveals itself. He sits down at a piano and begins to play a classical piece he heard on TV, amazing everyone. Written by Anonymous

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User Reviews

A truly inspiring story without sappiness
2 October 2001 | by scott s-2See all my reviews

I challenge anyone to watch this film and not be profoundly moved by the power of love and the will to never give up. Based upon a true story, the acting is beautiful and moving beyond belief. A true heart-warming classic.

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Release Date:

9 February 1983 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Dick Clark Productions See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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