If you don't love it, you can't suffer thru all the despair that comes with it. Keep doing it because you love it. ~
There are a few things I remember from when I was a kid that are crystal clear. The divorce of my parents, sitting on my grandmothers lap for hours on end, the explosion of the shuttle Challenger, watching Chaplin films with my uncle, and Robert Stack upon my television screen drawing me in intensely - to the next... Unsolved Mystery. It was the first show of the kind... Unsolved has inspired MANY shows.. including 48 Hours & Dateline - and a couple channels... One of them being ID (Identification Discovery.) It ALL started with 'Bob' though! Giving credit where it is due... Unsolved Mysteries was the brainchild of the GENIUS of John Cosgrove & Terry-Dunn Meurer.
Robert has been my third favorite actor since! Second only tooooooo...Charlie Chaplin, o'course!! I would be willing to bet I have everything that has ever come out bearing his name (that I know of, anyway!) So in writing this - I will be a little bias and prejudice in views. I remember in 3rd grade, doing a book report on him and it taking 'forever' to find ANYTHING on him. Remember - this was a couple of years before internet.. 😉
Imagine a 9 year old calling information trying to find out his number, 😂 having the operator give me sarcastic attitude. 🤣 I bet I wound up calling every studio in Hollywood and finally, with a ring to Jeff Franklin Productions, (of Full House fame), got transferred to a gentleman named Norm who had worked with Robert in a film called 'Big Trouble.' I got the report done and thought I was the ULTIMATE shIT! Upon looking back, I see that I was probably only able to get as far as I did because of the fact that I was 9 .. and they probably found it humorous that a 9 year old would go to such great lengths. Had someone told me I was a stalker, I wouldn't have known what the hell they meant. As far as I was concerned, I WAS a sleuth!! And a DAMN fine one!! Anyhoo - I got tons of stories of going to extremes like that as a kid. Don't kids say - and do the darndest things, eh?? Amen?? Yup! Onto Robert now ...
Un damn bon acteur!! (A DAMN FINE ACTOR!!) & Robert was!!
Robert was born Robert Langford Modini Stack, in Los Angeles, CA...on January 13, 1919. His family was well-to-do and hard working! His grandfather, Charles Woods, an accomplished opera singer, and his father, James Langford Stack, a wealthy advertising agency owner. As a baby, before his baritone voice sounded, Robert's parents divorced and his mom relocated young Robert, brother Jim, and herself to Europe. France to be exact. Young Robert had a vibrant & passionate love for entertaining!! Obviously, growing from a baby into a kid - in France, he took the native tongue of French, picking up Italian as well. He loved to cook, and entertain anyone who would allow him the opportunity. Robert excelled in school and was top of his class. Raised by a single mom, he always spoke highly of her ... calling her (in his awesome autobiography, 'Straight Shooter,').. MY BEST GIRL!! She was strict ... and made Robert tow the line...she instilled in him 'good always triumphs over evil,' a view he would carry with him his whole life. His mother had an uncanny bond with young Robert. A mom foremost, but best friend second. At age 9, Robert's father died and his mother ran by Robert, the prospect of moving back to L.A. He promptly agreed. To him, life was an adventure.
Upon arrival in L.A. - Robert realized he had something very important to learn .. English!! He only spoke fluent French and Italian. He could speak bits of English, but not fluently. As always, he quickly learned. At 14, his passion was strong as ever to entertain, through any venue possible. He speaks in his autobio about hearing a commotion outside his house in L.A., and upon coming out - seeing them filming an episode of "Lassie." The result?? THIS!! Very cool!!
He found and gained a bit of popularity at age 16, for his skeet shooting ability! Through practice with his brother, Jim, he became a member of the All-American Skeet Team. He broke 2 world records with his skeet shooting at age 16, and would one year later won the coveted title of National Skeet Shooting Champion. At 17, he took to playing Polo, which would become a favorite past-time.
At age 20, he was visiting sister-in-law, actress Wanda Hendrix, at Universal Studios, when he was approached by BIG-TIME Universal producer Joe Pasternak. Joe offered Robert an audition with beautiful Hollywood starlet DeAnna Durbin. Robert would recall, "He said, 'How'd you like to be in pictures? We'll make a test with Helen Parrish, a little love scene.' ... 'Gee, that sounds keen,' I told him - & I got the part." Robert's first film, which teamed him with DeAnna Durbin, was, 'First Love', in 1939. It was controversial, the movie-going public loved it! The rest, is legendary!
Robert racked up a pretty impressive line of films during his tenure!! (Pick any film and you have a winner.) Most noted, his most favorite roles, were his most famed. As detective sleuth Elliot Ness in 'The Untouchables', then as host of the popular tv show, 'Unsolved Mysteries.' (After the passing of Robert - legend, Dennis Farina, started hosting the show on Spike TV and did a great job!! He had some rather HUGE shoes to fill!!) According to co-creator/producer John Cosgrove - the show is eyeing a return to television.. & are currently looking at offers, so - FINGERS CROSSED!! 😉
In 1956, Robert proposed to Rosemary Bowe while filming the movie 'Written on the Wind.' They were married 2 weeks later...for life!! They had two children together ... Charles and Elizabeth. Here is a shot of Robert at home in Bel Air with a classic in 68. SWEEEEEET!!
In 2002, Robert was diagnosed with prostate cancer and treatment had been going well!
The morning of May 13th, 2003, was supposed to be like any other. Robert was to eat breakfast, then go do voice overs that day for the tv show, 'Unsolved Mysteries.' When he didn't come down to eat, Rosemary went to check on him. That's when she found him slumped over in a chair, unresponsive. 911 was called, paramedics arrived ... all to no end. 😕
Hollywood had lost among the greatest of talents to ever walk the earth!!
As his home stands today, it waas being renovated. I like to think they kept the same structure, and original mailbox!! The mailbox is original and hopefully, it will be left as is. There are no photos (that I know of) - of the house as it existed from the exteriors. Thanks to modern day reality, and the house selling for $7,775,000, we get this niiice photo of what all who entered the Stack home, saw first thing when they walked through the front door. COOLIO!!! FoSho!!
Robert was 84. It was a sad day for the world of entertainment!
RIP Robert!! Your legacy goes beyond measure or compare, and you were truly untouchable!!
Click here to leave your virtual flowers and comments at his grave.
Remember Airplane!, BOTH Caddyshacks, and Joe Vs the Volcano!! All solid GOLD!
Robert & JFK.. Very COOL!!