Wednesday, December 7, 2016

"Green Hornet" Actor Van Williams 1934-2016 Memorial Video


Van Zandt Jarvis Williams (February 27, 1934 – November 28, 2016) was an actor best known for his television role as Britt Reid/the Green Hornet and his earlier leading role as Kenny Madison in both Warner Bros. television detective series Bourbon Street Beat (1959) and its sequel, Surfside 6 (1960). He teamed for one season with the late Bruce Lee as his partner Kato, in the television series The Green Hornet, broadcast on ABC during the 1966–67 season.

Williams married his wife, Viki Flaxman in 1959. Together they had three children. He had five grandchildren. He had twin daughters from a previous marriage. In 1988, Williams owned houses in Sun Valley, Idaho, Fort Worth, and Hawaii. He said it was the fruits of good investments. Pat Priest (The Munsters), Williams’ longtime friend and neighbor, said he was her mentor. He later worked as a Reserve Deputy Sheriff, and suffered singed lungs and back injuries as a result. His favorite pastime was hunting geese, duck, elk, and other big game. Producer Kevin Burns revealed on December 5, 2016, that Williams died on November 28, 2016 from renal failure at the age of 82 in Scottsdale, Arizona.









Sunday, December 4, 2016

"Jack London" Actor Michael O'Shea 1973 Valley Oaks Cemetery


Michael O'Shea (March 17, 1906 – December 4, 1973) was an American character actor whose career spanned the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. O'Shea was born in Hartford, Connecticut. Unlike his five brothers who became policemen, he dropped out of school at 12 and began his acting career in vaudeville by touring with boxing idol Jack Johnson's show.


Career

Much like his character from Lady of Burlesque (1943), Biff Brannigan, O'Shea was a comedian and emcee at speakeasies. He put together his own dance band, "Michael O'Shea and His Stationary Gypsies," and later broke into radio and the "legitimate" stage, where he was billed for a time as "Eddie O'Shea." 


His performance in the 1942 play The Eve of St. Mark led to a string of film roles in the 40s, which included a memorable performance as Barbara Stanwyck's boyfriend comic in Lady of Burlesque. He also received great reviews in 1944 when he reprised his stage role of Private Thomas Mulveray in the film version of The Eve of St. Mark. Starred in Something For The Boys (1944) which showed off his Irish Tenor voice.


In 1943, he starred as the author Jack London


After his career in film waned—he was largely out of films by 1952—he took many roles in television. He acted in TV programs such as Ethel Barrymore Theatre, Damon Runyon Theater, Schlitz Playhouse of Stars, The Revlon Mirror Theater, and Daktari. He also starred in the NBC sitcom television series It's a Great Life from 1954-1956 as Denny Davis, a former GI trying to find a civilian job. Frances Bavier played his landlady.

Family

He was married twice. His first wife was Grace Watts, by whom he had two children. That marriage ended in divorce in 1947.




His second wife was actress Virginia Mayo, whom he married in 1947, and stayed married to until his 1973 death of a heart attack. He met Mayo during the filming of Jack London in 1943. They subsequently appeared on the stock stage together in such productions as George Washington Slept Here, Tunnel of Love and Fiorello!. During their marriage, they had one child, Mary Catherine O'Shea, who was born in 1953.


Michael O'Shea is buried with his wife Virginia Mayo at Valley Oaks Cemetery in Westlake Village. 



Other employment

O'Shea kept up his bricklayer's card and was a reserve deputy sheriff in the Ventura County Sheriff's Office[4]


References

1. https://books.google.com/books 
2. "Sunday Herald - Google News Archive Search". google.com. 
3. https://news.google.com/newspapers
4. p.7 Michael O'Shea is Claimed By Death Beaver County Times 5 Dec 1973


"Jagged Edge" Actor Robert Loggia 1930-2015 Memorial Video



Salvatore "Robert" Loggia (January 3, 1930 – December 4, 2015) was an American actor and director. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for Jagged Edge (1985) and won the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor for Big (1988).

In a career spanning over sixty years, Loggia performed in such notable films as The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965), Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978), An Officer and a Gentleman (1982), Scarface (1983), Prizzi's Honor (1985), Oliver and Company (1988), Innocent Blood (1992), Independence Day (1996), Lost Highway (1997), Return to Me (2000), Tim and Eric's Billion Dollar Movie (2012) and Independence Day: Resurgence (2016). He also made prominent appearances on television series such as Mancuso, FBI (1989–1990), Malcolm in the Middle (2001), The Sopranos (2004) , Men of a Certain Age (2011), and was the star of the groundbreaking 1966-67 NBC martial arts / action series, T.H.E. Cat.

Loggia was married to Marjorie Sloan from 1954 to 1981, with whom he had three children: Tracey (an actress), John (a production designer), and Kristina (an actress). Loggia and Sloan were divorced in 1981. In 1982, Loggia married Audrey O'Brien, a business executive and the mother of his stepdaughter Cynthia Marlette. Loggia and O'Brien remained married until his death in 2015.

In 2010, Loggia was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. He died on December 4, 2015, of complications from the disease, at his home in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, at the age of 85. He is interred at Westwood Village Cemetery.







"Jagged Edge" Actor Robert Loggia 2015 Westwood Village Cemetery


Salvatore "Robert" Loggia[2] (January 3, 1930 – December 4, 2015) was an American actor and director. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for Jagged Edge (1985) and won the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor for Big (1988).



In a career spanning over sixty years, Loggia performed in such notable films as The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965), Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978), 




An Officer and a Gentleman (1982), 




Scarface (1983), 




Prizzi's Honor (1985), 

Oliver and Company (1988), Innocent Blood (1992), 




Independence Day (1996), 

Lost Highway (1997), Return to Me (2000), Tim and Eric's Billion Dollar Movie (2012) and Independence Day: Resurgence (2016). He also made prominent appearances on television series such as 



Mancuso, FBI (1989–1990), 



Malcolm in the Middle (2001), 



The Sopranos (2004) 

and Men of a Certain Age (2011).



Early life and education

Salvatore Loggia (Italian pronunciation: [salvaˈtoːre ˈlɔddʒa]), an Italian American, was born in Staten Island, New York on January 3, 1930, to Biagio Loggia, a shoemaker born in Palma di Montechiaro, Agrigento, Sicily, and Elena Blandino, a homemaker born in Vittoria, Ragusa, Sicily.[1][3][4] He grew up in the Little Italy neighborhood, where the family spoke Italian at home. He attended New Dorp High School before going to Wagner College. Later he started courses towards a degree in journalism at the University of Missouri, but later switched to drama courses with Alvina Krause at Northwestern University.

After serving in the United States Army, he married Marjorie Sloan in 1954, and began a long career at the Actors Studio, studying under Stella Adler.[5]



Career

At age 25, he made his debut on Broadway in The Man With the Golden Arm in 1955.[5]

Although Loggia made his first film in 1956, in an uncredited appearance, it was not until he was cast as a New Mexico lawman Elfego Baca, two years later, that he gained a breakthrough in Hollywood. Loggia was a radio and TV anchor on the Southern Command Network in the Panama Canal Zone, and he came to prominence playing a real-life sheriff in Nine Lives of Elfego Baca, a series of Walt Disney TV shows. 



He later starred as the proverbial cat-burglar-turned-good circus artist, Thomas Hewitt Edward Cat, in a short-lived detective series called T.H.E. Cat, first broadcast in 1966. At first, T.H.E. Cat appeared to be a success, Loggia said: "We're drawing about a 30 per cent share of the audience, which NBC considers fine for a new show with new star."[6] After NBC cancelled the series, when viewing figures failed to deliver, Loggia went into a mid-life crisis; a "Dante-esque descent into the inferno," as he called it later. For six years his career foundered, and his marriage fell apart. Restless and unnerved, constantly riddled with self-doubt, a chance meeting with Audrey O'Brien was a saving grace. She helped him out of the crisis, and they later married. Despite playing Frank Carver on the CBS soap opera The Secret Storm[7] in 1972, he took a new course, when he decided to begin a career in directing.

He also carried on acting, and amassed many television credits in a variety of roles, including appearances on Overland Trail, Target: The Corruptors!, 


The Untouchables, 

The Eleventh Hour, Breaking Point, Combat!, Custer, Columbo, Ellery Queen, The High Chaparral, Gunsmoke, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, The Big Valley, The Wild Wild West, Rawhide, Little House on the Prairie, Starsky and Hutch, Charlie's Angels, Magnum, P.I., Quincy, M.E., Kojak, Hawaii Five-0, The Bionic Woman, Falcon Crest, Frasier, The Sopranos, Monk, and Oliver Stone's miniseries Wild Palms.[2]

The director Blake Edwards often cast Loggia in his films in one of the minor and supporting roles. These included Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978); S.O.B. (1981), which was a satire about Hollywood; and the Pink Panther sequels.

Loggia also acted in several widely acclaimed films such as An Officer and a Gentleman (1982), Scarface (1983), Prizzi's Honor (1985), and Independence Day (1996). Other films starring Loggia include Over The Top (1987), Necessary Roughness (1991), and Return to Me (2000).[2]

Loggia was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of crusty private detective Sam Ransom in the crime-thriller Jagged Edge (1985). He was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, his first such honor, for portraying FBI agent Nick Mancuso in the TV series Mancuso, FBI (1989–1990), a follow up to the previous year's miniseries Favorite Son (1988). Loggia appeared as a mobster in multiple films, including: Bill Sykes, the immoral loanshark and shipyard agent in Disney's animated film Oliver and Company (1988), Salvatore "The Shark" Macelli in John Landis' Innocent Blood (1992), Mr. Eddy in David Lynch's Lost Highway (1997), and Don Vito Leoni in David Jablin's The Don's Analyst (1997).[2] Additionally, he played violent mobster Feech La Manna in several episodes of The Sopranos.

In 1998, Loggia appeared in a television commercial lampooning obscure celebrity endorsements. In it, a young boy names Loggia as someone he would trust to recommend Minute Maid orange-tangerine blend. Loggia instantly appears and endorses the drink, to which the boy exclaims, "Whoa, Robert Loggia!"[8] The commercial was later referenced in a Malcolm in the Middle episode, in which Loggia made a guest appearance as "Grandpa Victor" (for which he received his second Emmy nomination); in it, Loggia drinks some orange juice, then spits it out and complains about the pulp.

In addition to voicing Sykes in Disney's Oliver and Company, Loggia had several other voice acting roles, in multiple media, including: Admiral Petrarch in the computer game FreeSpace 2 (1999), the narrator of the Scarface: The World is Yours (2006) game adaptation and the anime movie The Dog of Flanders (1997), crooked cop Ray Machowski in the video game Grand Theft Auto III (2001), and a recurring role on the Adult Swim animated TV comedy series Tom Goes to the Mayor (2004–2006).[9]

In August 2009, Loggia appeared in one of Apple's Get a Mac advertisements. The advertisement features Loggia as a personal trainer hired by PC to get him back on top of his game. On October 26, 2009, TVGuide.com announced Loggia had joined the cast of the TNT series Men of a Certain Age.[10]



In 2012, Loggia portrayed Saint Peter during his final imprisonment in The Apostle Peter and the Last Supper.[2] 

Loggia partnered with Canadian entrepreneur Frank D'Angelo from 2013, appearing in three films (Real Gangsters, The Big Fat Stone, and No Depo$it), with a fourth film in production (Sicilian Vampire) at the time of Loggia's death.

Loggia served as a director for episodes of Quincy M.E., Magnum P.I., and Hart to Hart.

Loggia reprised his role from Independence Day, General William Grey, in a cameo appearance in the 2016 sequel Independence Day: Resurgence, filmed shortly before his death. The film was released posthumously and dedicated to him.



Personal life

Loggia was married to Marjorie Sloan from 1954 to 1981, with whom he had three children: Tracey (an actress),[11] John (a production designer),[12] and Kristina (an actress).[1][13] Loggia and Sloan were divorced in 1981.[1]



In 1982, Loggia married Audrey O'Brien, a business executive and the mother of his stepdaughter Cynthia Marlette. Loggia and O'Brien remained married until his death in 2015.[1]



Illness and death

In 2010, Loggia was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.[14] He died on December 4, 2015, of complications from the disease, at his home in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, at the age of 85.[14][15] He is interred at Westwood Village Cemetery




Honors and recognitions

In 2010, Loggia was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in recognition of his humanitarian efforts.[16]

On December 17, 2011, Loggia was honored by his alma mater, the University of Missouri, with an honorary degree for his career and his humanitarian efforts.[17]



References

1. Robert Loggia Biography, Film Reference.
2. Biography for Robert Loggia at the Internet Movie Database
3. "News". Columbia Daily Tribune. Columbia, MO. October 24, 2006.
4. "Profile". Yahoo! Movies.
5. The Daily Telegraph, December 7, 2015, (paper only), Obituary, p.31.
6. Gowran, Clay (October 31, 1966). "Plan More Kisses for Bone Busting Cat". Chicago Tribune.
7. TV Guide Guide to TV. Barnes and Noble. 2004. p. 562. ISBN 0-7607-5634-1.
8. Whoa, Robert Loggia! on YouTube
9. Justin Sevakis (March 6, 2008) The Dog of Flanders – Buried Treasure, animenewsnetwork.com
10. Adam Bryant (October 26, 2009). "Exclusive: Ray Romano's Men of a Certain Age Casts Robert Loggia". TVGuide.com.
11. http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0517716/
12. http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0517714/?ref_=fn_nm_nm_1
13. http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0517715/?ref_=fn_nm_nm_1
14. Associated Press (December 4, 2015). "'Scarface,' 'Sopranos' actor Robert Loggia dies at 85". LA Times. Tribune Publishing.
15. McNary, Dave (December 4, 2015). "Oscar-Nominated Actor Robert Loggia Dies at 85". Variety. Penske Media Corporation.
16. "Ellis Island Medal of Honor", NYU News and Publications, May 10, 2015.
17. "Robert Loggia, William Least Heat-Moon to earn honorary MU degrees". Columbia Daily Tribune. December 1, 2011.
18. "An Officer and a Gentleman". Rolling Stone. Wenner Media LLC. May 22, 2013.
19. Canby, Vincent (April 5, 1991). "The Marrying Man (1991) Review/Film; Marriage as Eternal Punishment". The New York Times. The New York Times Company.
20. Ray Richmond (December 10, 1998). "Review: 'Hard Time'". Variety.
21. Steven Linan (December 12, 1998). "Reynolds' 'Hard Time' Gives Viewers a Rather Difficult Time". Los Angeles Times.
22. "Forget About It movie website". Internet Archive. February 7, 2006. Archived from the original on February 7, 2006.
23."Independence Day: Resurgence". War of 1996.
24. Arar, Yardena (December 7, 1989). "`Beetlejuice` And `Roger Rabbit` Each Win 3 Awards". Chicago Tribune. Tribune Publishing.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

"Twilight Zone" Actor Fritz Weaver 1926-2016 Memorial Video


Fritz William Weaver (January 19, 1926 − November 26, 2016) was an American actor in television, stage, and motion pictures. In cinema, he is best recognized from his debut film Fail Safe (1964), as well as Marathon Man (1976), Creepshow (1982) and The Thomas Crown Affair (1999). Among many television roles, he performed in two seminal projects: the movie The Legend of Lizzie Borden (1975) and the mini-series Holocaust (1978), for which he was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award. He was further known for his work in science fiction and fantasy, especially in television series and movies like The Twilight Zone, Night Gallery, The X-Files, The Martian Chronicles and Demon Seed, and also narrated educational TV programs.



"Manson Family" Lawyer Ronald Hughes MURDERED? 1970 Westwood Village Cemetery


Ronald W. Hughes (March 16, 1935 – c. November 1970) was an American attorney who represented Manson family member Leslie Van Houten.


Hughes disappeared while on a camping trip during a ten-day recess from the Tate-LaBianca murder trial in November 1970. His body was found in March 1971, but his cause of death could not be determined. At least one Manson family member has claimed that Hughes was murdered by the family in an act of retaliation. No one has been charged in connection with his death.


Tate–LaBianca murder trial

Hughes was among the first lawyers to meet with Charles Manson in December 1969. Initially, he signed on as the attorney for Manson, but was replaced by Irving Kanarek two weeks before the start of the trial.[1]

He eventually represented Leslie Van Houten in the Tate–LaBianca murder trial. Hughes failed the bar exam three times before passing and had never tried a case. Hughes, a onetime conservative, was called "the hippie lawyer" due to his intimate knowledge of the hippie subculture. That knowledge occasionally served his client well. He was able to raise questions about Linda Kasabian's credibility by asking her about hallucinogenic drugs, her belief in ESP, her thoughts that she might be a witch, and her experiencing "vibrations" from Manson.[1]

As attorney for defendant Van Houten, Hughes tried to separate the interests of his client from those of Charles Manson, a move that angered Manson and may have cost Hughes his life. He hoped to show that Van Houten was not acting independently, but was completely controlled in her actions by Manson. This strategy contradicted Manson's plan to allow fellow family members to implicate themselves in the crimes, clearing him of all involvement.[1]

Twenty-two weeks into the trial, which included outbursts and bizarre behavior from Manson and his co-defendants, the prosecution rested. Lawyers for the defendants stunned the courtroom by announcing that the defense also rested.[2] Susan Atkins, Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten immediately shouted that they wanted to testify. Per Manson's instructions, the women said that they wanted to testify to committing the murders on their own and that Manson had nothing to do with the crimes. Hughes objected and stood up against Manson's ploy and stated, "I refuse to take part in any proceeding where I am forced to push a client out the window."[3] After Manson made a statement to the court, however, he then advised the women against testifying. Judge Charles Older then ordered a ten-day recess to allow the attorneys to prepare for their final arguments. Hughes later told a reporter that he was confident that he could secure an acquittal for Van Houten.[4]


Disappearance

On November 27, 1970, Hughes decided to take a camping trip in a remote area near Sespe Hot Springs in Ventura County, California. According to James Forsher and Lauren Elder, two friends who accompanied Hughes on the trip, heavy rains which had caused flash floods in the area had mired their Volkswagen in mud. Forsher and Elder hitchhiked their way out, while Hughes decided to stay in the area until November 29. As the rains continued, the wilderness area was evacuated.[5] Hughes was last seen by three campers on the morning of November 28. They later told investigators that Hughes was alone at the time and had briefly stopped to talk with them. Hughes also appeared to be unharmed and was in an area that was away from flood waters. When court reconvened on November 30, Hughes failed to appear. Due to continued rainstorms, the Ventura County sheriff had to wait two days before a search was launched.[6]

On December 2, Judge Older ordered the trial to proceed and appointed a new attorney, Maxwell Keith, for Van Houten. The women angrily demanded the firing of all their lawyers, and asked to reopen the defense. Judge Older denied the request. By week's end, Hughes had been missing for two weeks. When the court reconvened, Manson and the women created a disturbance suggesting that Judge Older "did away with Ronald Hughes," which resulted in their being removed again from the courtroom.[3]

Death

Over the following months, police conducted more than a dozen searches of the area where Hughes was last seen. After receiving an anonymous tip in March 1971, police also searched in the area surrounding the Barker Ranch in Inyo County where Manson and his associates had previously lived.[7]

On March 29, 1971, the same day the jury returned death penalty verdicts against all the defendants on all counts, Hughes' severely decomposed body was discovered by two fishermen in Ventura County. His body was found wedged between two boulders in a gorge,[8] Hughes was later positively identified by dental X-rays. Due to the severe decomposition of his body, the cause and nature of his death was ruled as 'Undetermined'[9]


His funeral was held on April 7, 1971 in West Los Angeles.[10] Hughes was buried in Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles.


Aftermath

In his book Helter Skelter, Vincent Bugliosi wrote that Sandra Good, an associate of Manson and a close friend of devoted Manson family member Lynette "Squeaky" Fromme, claimed that Manson family members had killed "35 to 40 people" and that, "Hughes was the first of the retaliation murders."[11] Attorney Stephen Kay, who helped Bugliosi prosecute the Manson family members, stated that while he is "on the fence" about the Manson family's involvement in Hughes' death, Manson had open contempt for Hughes during the trial. Kay added, "The last thing Manson said to him [Hughes] was, 'I don't want to see you in the courtroom again,' and he was never seen again alive."[12]

Retired Ventura County sheriff Charlie Rudd, who was assigned to investigate Hughes' disappearance, stated that he felt Hughes' death was accidental because there were no signs of foul play. Rudd believes that Hughes was stranded by the rainstorm which caused the creek to swell. He believes that Hughes drowned or was knocked unconscious and killed by rocks and debris as he was swept away by the water.[12] Musician and author Ed Sanders, who was a friend of Hughes, wrote about his death in his 1971 book The Family. Sanders also believes that his death was an accidental drowning.[13]

In 1976, Leslie Van Houten was granted a new trial on the grounds that she was denied proper legal representation after Hughes disappeared before the closing arguments.[14] Van Houten's retrial in 1977 ended in a hung jury.[15] She was released from jail after posting $200,000 bond and retried in 1978.[16] In her third trial, Van Houten was convicted of the first degree murders of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca and conspiracy in connection with the Tate murders.[17] She was sentenced to life in prison.


Footnotes

1. The Charles Manson (Tate–LaBianca Murder) Trial: Other Key Figures
2. (Bugliosi 1994, pp. 503-504)
3. "Charles Manson and the Manson Family"
4. (Bugliosi 1994, pp. 508, 514)
5. (Sanders 2002, p. 437)
6. (Bugliosi 1994, pp. 514-515)
7. "New Search Slated For Attorney" The Press-Courier. March 21, 1971.
8. "Body Believed To Be That Of Attorney" Merced Sun-Star. March 30, 1971. p. 2.
9. (Bugliosi 1994, p. 624)
10. "Ronald Hughes, Tate Trial Attorney, Receives Eulogy" The Press-Courier. April 8, 1971. p. 22.
11. (Bugliosi 1994, p. 625)
12. Becerra, Hector; Winton, Richard (June 1, 2012). "Manson follower's tapes may yield new clues, LAPD says" latimes.com. p. 2.
13. (Sanders 2002, p. 438)
14. "Manson Follower Has Right To New Trial" Merced Sun-Star. December 10, 1976. p. 2.
15. "A third murder trial for Van Houten is scheduled" Lodi News-Sentinel. September 2, 1977. p. 20.
16. "Manson Follower In Court" Herald-Journal. August 10, 1978. p. B7.
17. "Manson's follower convicted of murder" The Spokesman-Review. July 6, 1978. p. 1.

Sources

Bugliosi, Vincent; Gentry, Curt (1974, 1994). Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders. W. W. Norton and Company. ISBN 0-393-32223-8
Sanders, Ed (2002). The Family. Da Capo Press. ISBN 1-560-25396-7