stars I met or saw in person...

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1.
Jay Leno
Jay Leno began his career in night clubs, where he worked 300 nights a year before hitting it big in 1992 with his own late-night talk show, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. By that time he had appeared on television, acted in a few films (American Hot Wax) but hit paydirt with his late-night television appearances (he made a record number of visits to Late Night with David Letterman); for several years...
“ Had a VIP pass and met him in the parking lot of the Tonight Show as he was getting some suits for his trip to Vegas that night. Halle Berry was his guest that afternoon on his show. Does she count too? I also saw him in the early 90's in Lake Tahoe doing some standup comedy in one of the casinos. ” - Larry Braga
 
2.
Sally Struthers
Cute as a button and with a petite, porcelain prettiness and vulnerability that endeared her to the American public, Sally Struthers nabbed a series role in the early 1970s and became a solid part of TV history as a member of a dysfunctional family quartet in the milestone sitcom, All in the Family. She was born Sally Ann Struthers on July 28...
“ Met her on a cable car in San Francisco. She was very nice and gave me her autograph on my cable car ticket. ” - Larry Braga
 
3.
Jean Stapleton
Jean Stapleton was born Jeanne Murray in Manhattan, New York City, to Marie A. (Stapleton), an opera singer, and Joseph Edward Murray, a billboard advertising salesman. Her paternal grandparents were Irish. She was a cousin of actress Betty Jane Watson. Other relatives in show business were her uncle...
“ Met her at Postrio's Restaurant in San Francisco as we were having dinner. ” - Larry Braga
 
4.
Johnny Carson
Johnny Carson, the legendary "King of Late Night TV" who dominated the medium's nether hours for three decades, was born in Corning, Iowa, but moved with his family to nearby Norfolk, Nebraska when he was eight years old. It was in Norfolk, where he lived until he was inducted into the US Navy in 1943...
“ I was in his audience during the taping of the Tonight Show. Jimmy Stewart was his guest. ” - Larry Braga
 
5.
Gene Hackman
Actor, Unforgiven
Eugene Allen Hackman was born in San Bernardino, California, the son of Anna Lyda Elizabeth (Gray) and Eugene Ezra Hackman, who operated a newspaper printing press. He is of Pennsylvania Dutch (German), English, and Scottish ancestry, partly by way of Canada, where his mother was born. After several moves...
“ Met him in the locker room at a ski resort in Aspen, Colorado. I had to excuse myself as his locker was right above mine. He was very nice about introducing himself. ” - Larry Braga
 
6.
Arnold Schwarzenegger
With an almost unpronounceable surname and a thick Austrian accent, who would have ever believed that a brash, quick talking bodybuilder from a small European village would become one of Hollywood's biggest stars, marry into the prestigious Kennedy family, amass a fortune via shrewd investments and one day be the Governor of California!...
“ Saw him in Fremont, California during the filming of one of the Terminator movies. ” - Larry Braga
 
7.
Mario Lopez
Self, Extra
Born in San Diego, California, on October 10th, 1973, to Mario Sr. and Elvira, Mario Lopez's first professional role was on the series, a.k.a. Pablo. Mario is probably best known to youngsters, however, as A.C. Slater from NBC's popular 1980s teen comedy series Saved by the Bell. Among Mario's other credits are several other popular television series...
“ Literally bumped into him and his handler during the taping at the Grove. Is he smiling like that all the time? ” - Larry Braga
 
8.
Judith Light
Judith Light was born February 9, 1949 in Trenton, New Jersey to Pearl Sue and Sidney Light. Judith later graduated from St. Mary's Hall-Doane Academy in Burlington, New Jersey, and later enrolled at Carnegie-Mellon University, where she earned a degree in drama. With several television appearances, perhaps Judith is best remembered as Angela Bower in the 1980's sitcom Who's the Boss?.
“ On same trip to Aspen, Colorado was dining in a restaurant where she said hello to everyone in the restaurant. ” - Larry Braga
 
9.
Steve Jobs
Steven Paul Jobs was born on 24 February 1955 in San Francisco, California, to students Abdul Fattah Jandali and Joanne Carole Schieble who were unmarried at the time and gave him up for adoption. He was taken in by a working class couple, Paul and Clara Jobs, and grew up with them in Mountain View, California...
“ Met Steve Jobs when he was CEO of Apple in the produce section of Whole Foods in Palo Alto, California. Yes, he was picking out some fresh fruit, but not apples... ” - Larry Braga
 
10.
James Hong
James Hong was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. He studied civil engineering at the University of Minnesota, but at some point along the way became interested in acting. He graduated from the University of Southern California and practiced for 1½ years as a road engineer with the County of Los Angeles...
“ Met him at D.B. Cooper's club in San Jose. ” - Larry Braga
 
11.
Telly Savalas
Actor, Kojak
Son of Greek immigrants. Soldier during World War II. Studied psychology. Worked as journalist for ABC News. The bald-headed actor played character roles, often as sadistic or psychotic types. He became a TV favorite in the 1970s when his role as Det. Theo Kojak in the TV movie The Marcus-Nelson Murders was expanded into the gritty Kojak TV series, lasting from 1973-78.
“ Met Telly at the Universal Hilton while he was having breakfast with his family. He was very nice and shook our hands at the table. ” - Larry Braga
 
12.
“ We were in the elevator when met him in Aspen, Colorado at the Ritz Carlton during one of his events. ” - Larry Braga
 
13.
Bobcat Goldthwait
Robert Francis 'Bobcat' Goldthwait, born May 26, 1962, is an American comedian. He is most widely known for his high pitch voice during his comedy acts. He was born in Syracuse, New York in 1962. He decided on a career as a comedian at an early age and was performing professionally while still in high school at the age of 15...
“ We heckled him at the Punch Line in Pleasanton and he responded in kind to our table. ” - Larry Braga
 
14.
Melanie Griffith
Actress, Working Girl
Melanie Griffith was born on August 9, 1957 in New York City, to then model/future actress Tippi Hedren and former child actor turned advertising executive Peter Griffith. Her parents' marriage ended in 1961 and Tippi brought Melanie to Los Angeles to get a new start. Tippi caught the eye of the great director Alfred Hitchcock...
“ Bumped into Melanie and Antonio skiing at Aspen ski resort. ” - Larry Braga
 
15.
Antonio Banderas
Actor, Desperado
Antonio Banderas, one of Spain's most famous faces, was a soccer player until breaking his foot at the age of fourteen; he is now an international film star known for playing Zorro in the eponymous film series. He was born José Antonio Domínguez Banderas on August 10, 1960, in Málaga, Andalusia, Spain...
“ Bumped into Antonio and Melanie skiing at Aspen ski resort. ” - Larry Braga
 
16.
Lou Ferrigno
An internationally famous and well respected bodybuilder / actor, Lou Ferrigno first appeared on TV screens in 1977 as the musclebound The Incredible Hulk, the alter ego of meek scientist Bruce Banner. Ferrigno was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1951 and as a child suffered from an ear infection that resulted in permanent partial hearing loss...
“ Met The Incredible Hulk at Comic Con 2012. He is in terrific shape and was very nice. He didn't charge for the handshake! ” - Larry Braga
 
17.
Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra was born in Hoboken, New Jersey, to Italian immigrants Natalina Della (Garaventa), from Northern Italy, and Saverio Antonino Martino Sinatra, a Sicilian boxer, fireman, and bar owner. Growing up on the gritty streets of Hoboken made Sinatra determined to work hard to get ahead. Starting out as a saloon singer in musty little dives (he carried his own P.A...
“ Met Frank Sinatra at the Circle Star Theater in San Carlos, California. It was around 1989, give or take. He was greeting us backstage after his show. ” - Larry Braga