©03 The Media Desk
Wow. 100. He was Older than George Burns had been when the end came.
Bob 'you gotta have' Hope was more than a legend. More than an icon. Bob Hope was the archetype of entertainment as it should be.
Yes he could tell a dirty joke, but it wasn't how he paid the rent. Yes he could do the double entendre and sexually
provocative humor, as with Dorothy Lamour in whichever Road picture you like, but it wasn't the entire plot of the movie. Yes he could blaze away at politicians and was a regular at such things as Friars Club roasts and suchlike when those were still done, but he was more than that too.
And then there was the USO tours and his cadre of pretty girls appearing with him through how many wars and police actions and even peacetime since the first one in 1941. Which brought him very well deserved international acclaim.
And then we have to look at the TV specials. Or should we consider the golf tournament. Maybe drop back to his days in vaudeville as, of all things, a dancer in the brightspots of … Cleveland.
He spent Sixty Years with the National Broadcasting Company, radio and TV. That's TWO full careers for anybody else. Twenty years doing a more or less regular radio show.
And there is more…
Broadway, the 1936 Ziegfeld Follies, and 'Red, Hot and Blue' with the great one- Jimmy Durante and legendary singer Ethel Merman.
And TV. Hope wasn't convinced the new medium would catch on and moved to the small screen a little later than others. But when he did it, he hit it hard. And never looked back.
Hope golfed, and kidded, with at least six US presidents. Had been knighted by the Queen (Hope was born in England). Given innumerable honorary degrees and medals. And so on until he had been proclaimed the 'Most Honored Entertainer in History'.
Now that is an honor that would be tough to top.
And THAT says all that needs said about him.
Not only will he be missed, he can never be replaced.
Thanks for the memories.
Leslie Townes (Bob) Hope 1903 - 2003
For information about him and his life. [links will open in new window]
Bob Hope's Official Site
The Desert Golf Classic
Library of Congress Exhibit
US Military Tribute.
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