Lately, as you can see by my posts nostalgia has been hanging around. So when I found out that Wednesday, May 26, 2010 our beloved Art Linkletter died at the age of 97, I was immediately transported to a time when I would get comfy in front of the TV anticipating one of my very favorite shows, Art Linkletter’s House Party. TV entertainment was different then with many variety shows which had guest singers, comedians, and more. I miss this form of entertainment.
Art Linkletter was a natural with people. His simple humor and hominess is what made many of us look forward to tuning in to each show. He was always unscripted and improvised. I remember him and his show with great fondness.
Born in Canada as Art Kelly, he was abandoned at 4 weeks and then adopted by evangelist Fulton John Linkletter, and wife Mary. They moved to California, where Art spent most of the rest of his life.
After finishing high school, Art toured the country working his way along on the railroads, doing odd jobs, and meeting people. He developed his interest in all sorts of people which became a big theme to his later career. Returning home to southern California, he earned a teaching degree, married, then ended up in the field of radio broadcasting. He had two main shows from the mid 40’s to the late 60’s on radio and television, People are Funny and House Party.
Later in life he became a speaker and crusader against drugs, and a voice for conservatives, often speaking eloquently on what he saw was a decline in parts of our society. He also was a leader for Goodwill Industries, and served the organizations of World Vision, and the Arthritis Foundation.
Art Linkletter was a sincere and humble man of fine integrity. Some of his conservative ideas I may not have totally agreed with, but it doesn’t change my admiration for him and the fact that he brought joy, humor and goodness to this world. I offer my condolences to his family.
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