Deidre's twin sister, Andrea Gengler, was teacher of the year at Princess Anne Middle school (she taught the handicap kids and drama). She also played Marlena's twin sister on Days Of Our Lives (Samantha) and made an appearance in the TV movie about Deidre's real life story.
Deidre was elected Junior Orange Bowl Queen at age 12.
Deidre is actively involved with, and has been honored for her contributions by, charities such as P.A.T.H. (People Assisting The Homeless), Habitat For Humanity and Childhelp U.S.A.
In 1996, Deidre launched her own jewelry line, The Timeless Collection, which included necklaces, bracelets, pins, earrings and watches. In 1998 she released a line of limited edition Christmas ornaments, which included a digital recording of her reading 'Twas The Night Before Christmas.
Deidre was the consumer spokesperson for ScanDiet, a patented soy protein weight management product.
Deidre has acted as national spokesperson for such products as Hallmark's "To Kids with Love" card line, Dexatrim weight loss products, Exfole Skin Care Products and Baby Genius child development program.
Deidre was honoured with an Intimate Portrait by Lifetime Television, which saluted her personal and professional achievements.
Deidre: (her least favourite storyline on Days Of Our Lives) I did the first crib death. I wasn't that skilled as an actress. I wasn't comfortable with unrestrained emotion on camera. (The writers) decided to let Marlena walk in and find the baby. It was hugely difficult and hugely frightening. I spoke to doctors who had counselled people through that experience. The stories were horrific of the human response. I felt lost and scared, and unprepared to do those scenes.
Deidre: (her favourite storyline on Days Of Our Lives) I loved the possession story. Those were two long arcs where I got to veer away from Marlena's perfection.
Deidre: When I was early on the show [Days Of Our Lives], I met a man through my fan mail. He lived In Chester, Pennsylvania. We wrote back and forth. He became my pal. When I first wrote him he was 97 years old. When he turned 98, I said, 'I'm coming back for your birthday'. I flew to Pennsylvania and I spent his birthday with him. He was an artist and an illustrator for the Saturday Evening Post. He was extraordinary. That's one of the gifts that I get to have playing Marlena: meeting wonderful people.
Deidre: When Marlena was pronounced dead [on Days of Our Lives] because of the Salem Strangler, there was a big picket line around NBC, which was astonishing. The Executive Producer pulled me aside and said, 'They don't know that you're working today. We should send you out there. The media is here and there are people picketing.' It was startling!
Deidre: (on her favourite memories on Days Of Our Lives) My favourite times were when my sister was on the show playing Hattie. She was sort of Marlena-esque, but when she played Hattie we laughed until we cried. She was a natural at it.
Deidre: (on Marlena & John in Days Of Our Lives) The one constant is that these two people love each other. I know when we've been at a loss for what we're doing in a scene, there are points where you've turned or I've turned and said, "We'll just have to love each other now." That will transcend whatever is going on in the scene. It's what makes John and Marlena compelling and magnetic. It's fun to watch them, because whatever the situation is the one thing you trust - like with your parents or with the people you knew growing up that were your role models - is that they will always be together. That constancy is always there.
Deidre: I'm doing a lot of child research now because of my son. I've taken him to swimming class, and I go to Mommies and Me, and... I get all the parenting magazines. I think with women who are doing it all for the first time, and are not quite my age, there's this process of discovery.