The Silver Wings
Another Thanksgiving Day is approaching but the Walton family do not feel much like celebrating this year. John and Olivia have gone to see John Boy and have found him in a coma with serious head injuries, but the doctor and the couple feel that he may respond if they are there talking to him. Olivia continues to talk to him, reminding him of lots of different things which happened in his past, and also begins to read his book to him, hoping he will respond. Rose becomes angry at the apathy which the family at home seem to have and thinks they should find something to be thankful for.
While Olivia is there supporting John Boy, she is asked to consider, and agrees, to volunteering for the Red Cross. She moves in with Mrs Denman and helps at the hospital. While Olivia is looking after John Boy, she becomes friendly with Sam, his room mate who has lost his legs and is alone with no family. She urges Mrs Denman to visit him, but she resists, saying it is too hard, until Thanksgiving Day when she arrives to take Sam down to Thanksgiving Dinner. John and Olivia are preparing for their Thanksgiving meal around John Boy's bed, and as they are joining hands to say the blessing, John Boy moves to join in, signifying the beginning of his recovery.
- Antoinette Stella as Darcy Thatcher
- NOTE 1: This episode marked the last regular appearance of Michael Learned, although she did make guest appearances later.
- NOTE 2: This episode introduced Robert Wightman in the role of John Boy Walton.
- NOTE 3: Morgan Stevens, playing the hospital patient Sam, went on to become a regular over the last few episodes of Season 9, and the 1982 television movies, playing the part of Paul Northridge, Erin's future husband.