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Biography

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Overview (4)

Date of Birth 31 March 1903New York City, New York, USA
Date of Death 24 November 1939Seattle, Washington, USA  (spinal meningitis)
Birth NameJohn Thomas Harron
Height 6' 1½" (1.87 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Actor John (Johnnie) Harron was born in New York City on March 31, 1903, a younger brother of silent screen star Robert Harron. John got his first taste of the movie business with an unbilled bit in one of his brother's many classic films, Hearts of the World (1918). After all the tabloid hoopla of his brother's sudden and mysterious shooting death in 1920 (listed as "accidental" but some claim it might have been suicide), John was practically handed a movie career on a silver platter.

Taking Bobby's place portraying young, innocent, wholesome romantic leads opposite silent screen's top femme stars, John literally coasted through hundreds of films. Although he showed major promise starring or co-starring in such jazz-era mementos as The Five Dollar Baby (1922), The Ragged Heiress (1922), Dulcy (1923), My Wife and I (1925), The Boy Friend (1926) and Silk Stockings (1927), he never managed to win the kind of fame brother Bobby received. By the arrival of sound, John had been relegated to bit and unbilled parts again in second-string films.

Following location work on his last picture, John returned home unusually exhausted. He traveled to Seattle for a bit of fishing and rest and relaxation but, shortly after arriving, developed a raging headache and went into the hospital. Diagnosed with spinal meningitis, John died suddenly on November 24, 1939 at the hospital. He was only 36 and was survived by his wife of ten years, actress Betty Westmore, and young daughter Colleene.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh / gr-home@pacbell.net

Spouse (1)

Betty Westmore (1929 - 24 November 1939) (his death) (1 child)

Trivia (4)

Brother of actor Robert Harron.
Attending John's funeral were fellow Irish actors James Cagney, Pat O'Brien and George Brent.
John had eight other brothers and sisters. In addition to silent screen star Robert Harron, they included Charles, Theresa (Tessie), Madeline, Agnes (who became a nun), Mary, Edna, and a daughter who died in childhood. A few of John's other brothers and sisters also appeared in Bobby's films as extras. Of all nine children, John was the only one to marry to continue a new generation. He and wife Betty had one child, Colleene (Harron) Kiley, who ended up having nine children of her own.
Met actress Betty Westmore during the filming of The Man in Hobbles (1928). They married in 1929. Betty abandoned her career for marriage and family. They had one child, Colleene, who was born on August 13, 1930.

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