Handsome Bob Crane had many careers, including working as a disc jockey for a while. He started acting around the age of 33. One of his first acting jobs in Return to Peyton Place (1961). After a guest appearance on "The Dick Van Dyke Show" (1961) and a supporting role on "The Donna Reed Show" (1958), he landed the lead role of Col. Robert Hogan in "Hogan's Heroes" (1965). After the cancellation of that show he was in several TV movies and two Disney films. He also got his own show in 1975, but it was canceled after only a few months. With his career not going too well Bob started doing dinner theater plays. In 1978 he got the lead in a production of the play "Beginner's Luck in Scottsdale, AZ. A month after he started the play he was found murdered in his hotel room. He had one son and was separated from his second wife, Sigrid Valdis.IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous
Bob Crane was born in Waterbury, CT, the youngest of two sons. In school, he was known for being a class clown, and an intense music lover. His favorites were jazz and big band. Bob's specialty was the drums. After dropping out of high school, he turned his attention to his love for music. He became a drummer with the Connecticut Symphony Orchestra for about a year. He was later dismissed for not being "serious enough." In 1949, Bob married Ann Terzian, his high school sweetheart. They had three children- Bob Jr, Debbie, and Karen. In 1956, Bob and his family left the east, and moved out west to California. There he began a lengthy, successful career in radio. He worked at KNX radio, and became "king of the airwaves" in Los Angeles. His radio program became a huge success, the most listened to on the air. This was due to Crane's personality and humor. Hollywood's biggest and brightest were frequently interviewed by Bob on his show, including Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, Marvin Gaye, Mary Tyler Moore, and Bob Hope. In the midst of his success, Bob's true goal was to make it big as an actor. He began to make guest appearances on such shows as "The Dick Van Dyke Show", and "The Twilight Zone." He also appeared in the 1961 films "Return to Peyton Place" and "Man-Trap." In 1963, Bob got a role on the popular "Donna Reed Show," as Dr. Dave Kelsey. After two years, the producers let him go, saying his character was "too suggestive." This was no problem for Crane. In 1965, he received the starring role in a new sitcom for CBS called "Hogan's Heroes." It was a comedy about a group of POWs in a Nazi prison camp. He played the smooth-talking, crafty Colonel Robert Hogan. "Hogan's Heroes" became a hit show, finishing in the top 10 at the end of the 1965-66 season. Crane was nominated for an Emmy twice, in 1966 and 1967. He had reached the peak of his success. It was during this time Crane met Patti Olsen, known as Sigrid Valdis. She played Hilda on "Hogan's Heroes." Bob divorced his wife, Ann, after 20 years of marriage, and married Patti in 1970. They married on the set of "Hogan's Heroes." They had a son, Scotty, in 1971. Also in 1971, the new president of CBS abruptly cancelled "Hogan's Heroes," after a 6 year run. Following the end of "Hogan's Heroes," Bob continued to act. However, the roles were few, and not very fulfilling. He starred in "Superdad" and "Gus," two Disney films, and had guest spots on shows, including "Policewoman," "Ellery Queen," and "Love Boat." Bob briefly had his own show, "The Bob Crane Show," in 1975. Unfortunately, NBC cancelled the show after 3 months. In 1973, Bob bought the rights to the play "Beginner's Luck." He both directed the play, and starred in it. The play went around the country, including California, Texas, Hawaii, and Arizona. In June, 1978, Bob took "Beginner's Luck" to Scottsdale, Arizona. It was in Scottsdale that the unthinkable happened. In the early morning hours of June 29, 1978, Bob Crane was brutally murdered in his rented apartment/hotel room. He was beaten to death while he slept, and strangled with an electrical cord. He was 49 years old. At the time of his death, the future looked bright for Bob Crane. Although he was in the midst of divorcing second wife, Patti, he was set to star in "Crash", a TV movie for ABC, and was preparing to share a new house with his son, Bob Jr. His murder remains unsolved. It is one of the most compelling mysteries of all time.IMDb Mini Biography By: Kelli Nunez, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Crane was born Robert Edward Crane, in Waterbury, Connecticut, July 13th 1928. In 1942, at the age of 14, Bob began drumming for the Connecticut Symphony Orchestra. He was dismissed a year later because he was not considered "serious enough." Shortly thereafter, Bob began a radio career which eventually took him west to Los Angeles, and landed him in the morning drive slot at CBS powerhouse KNX, where he became known as "The King of the Los Angeles Airwaves." His show was not only wildly successful, it was revolutionary. Bob filled the broadcast booth with wry wit and charisma, not to mention drums, chimpanzees, and movie stars.
His show was the number-one-rated morning show in Los Angeles, and Hollywood's biggest stars were regular guests on his show; Marilyn Monroe, Ronald Regan, Jayne Mansfield, Mary Tyler Moore, Bob Hope, and Frank Sinatra, to name only a handful. It was during his reign as "King of the L.A. Airwaves" that Crane captured the attention of CBS television executives. He began making guest appearances on The Dick Van Dyke Show, among others. Soon he landed himself a regular role on The Donna Reed Show as Doctor David Kelsey. However, Crane's character was dropped after two seasons because executives decided the flirtatious Kelsey was "too suggestive." Then, in 1965 Crane was offered the starring role in a highly controversial television pilot about Allied prisoners in a German P.O.W. camp. The pilot made a splash and Hogan's Heroes went on to become one of the most successful sitcoms of all time. In 1966 and 1967, Bob was nominated for two Emmy awards - this would be the peak of his career.
In 1971, after a six-year run, CBS inexplicably canceled Hogan's Heroes when management decided to take the entire network in a different direction. In the years following the cancellation of Hogan's Heroes, Bob stayed busy with various film and television appearances, including two Disney films, _Superdad (1974)_ and Gus (1976). Bob also remained a regular guest on the talk show circuit, as well as a guest host for Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show.
In 1975 NBC gave Bob another shot at prime time with "The Bob Crane Show" (1975). However, the show was not a critical success, and it was canceled after only thirteen episodes. For the next several years Bob showed his wares on the dinner theater circuit, acting and directing in Beginner's Luck, among other productions. It was during a 1978 run of Beginner's Luck that Bob Crane was brutally murdered in a Scottsdale hotel room. His murder remains a mystery.
|Sigrid Valdis||(16 October 1970 - 29 June 1978) (his death) 1 child|
|Anne Terzian||(1949 - 17 June 1970) (divorced) 3 children|
He was one of the first disc jockeys in the country to earn in excess of $100,000 per year (1960).
2002: Was the subject of a "noise opera" by the experimental band Facetious (released on CD under the title "Raw Biscuits: The Bob Crane Story").
Hobby was playing the drums. He was a life-long jazz buff who played with several amateur jazz groups over the years.
Originally buried at Oakwood Memorial Park in Chatsworth, Los Angeles County. In 2003, many years after his death, he was moved to the prestigious Westwood Memorial Park on Glendon Avenue in Los Angeles. His marker is very elaborate and beautiful with writings and photographs of him and his widow Sigrid Valdis. It is located in the middle of the memorial park.
The cause of death was bludgeoning with a video camera tripod. The video cable was wrapped around his neck postmortem.
His last recorded public appearance, just a few days before his death, was on "Celebrity Cooks" (1975).
Best remembered by the public for his starring role as Col. Robert Hogan in Hogan's Heroes (1965).
In January 1978, Crane taped an episode of "Celebrity Cooks" (1975). The episode was scheduled to air on July 10, 1978, but was never telecast because of the actor's murder in June. Reportedly in the show, Crane made numerous jokes about death, which would have made the episode too eerily prophetic.
Crane was basically bankrupt during the mid to late 1970's and, shortly after his murder, his estate would come into millions of dollars from a new syndication deal for Hogans Heroes, which he owned a small part of.
His last movie appearance was in the Walt Disney movie "Gus" where he played an announcer named "Pepper Pot".
Studied with acting teacher Stella Adler in 1964.
I don't smoke, I don't drink. Two out of three ain't bad.
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