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Auction raises money for Children's Diabetes

A star-studded auction and dinner attended by former Presidents Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford raised more than $5-million for the Children's Diabetes Foundation on Saturday night in Beverly Hills, Calif. The celebrities included Elizabeth Taylor, Frank Sinatra, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Faye Dunaway, Neil Diamond, Paul McCartney and Bette Midler.

Stevie Wonder wrote and performed a song for the event titled Some Day. Other faces in the crowd included Paula Abdul, Steven Spielberg, Jack Nicholson, Gregory Peck, Dionne Warwick and Michael Caine.

The benefit itself raised $3-million, said publicist Laurie Dominic. Investor Marvin Davis, who serves as foundation chairman, chipped in an additional $2-million, Dominic said.

It's a little bit country

Guitarist Chet Atkins says his duet album with Dire Straits leader Mark Knopfler has a stronger country sound than he expected.

The album, Neck and Neck, features the country great and the British rocker in instrumental and vocal duets of country, old standards and jazz.

"It's more country than I wanted it to be, but that's all right, I guess," Atkins said. "That's how Mark wanted to do it. He wanted me to get away from that easy-listening jazz stuff I had been doing for the last four or five years."

Atkins, 66, who has been described as the most recorded instrumental soloist of all time, joined the Grand Ole Opry as a soloist in 1950. He was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1973 and has won nine Country Music Association Awards and eight Grammys.

Et cetera

Salman Rushdie says he is optimistic that he can work out a reconciliation with Moslems, but an Iranian leader says the death sentence against the Indian-born author of The Satanic Verses can never be lifted.

"I have to hope that the atmosphere is gradually changing. I think there's various signs that it might be," Rushdie told CBS News correspondent Mike Wallace on Sunday's edition of 60 Minutes.

In a separate interview, Rajei-Khorrasani, a powerful leader in Iran's parliament, said the death sentence cannot be lifted "because it is a religious fact, which remains there forever."

Nice day for a wet wedding

Avid skiers Phil and Emelia White of Euless, Texas, seal their marriage with a kiss during a water-skiing ceremony Saturday on the Marine Creek in Fort Worth.