Friday, January 25, 2013

For Dobe and Huell

I just wanted to acknowledge the deaths of two important individuals that have had some influence on this blog. I have mentioned both men sometime in the past, but I thought it is important to say at least something now.

Harry Carey Jr. died at the end of last month. He was in a lot of old westerns and can usually be remembered being in the crew with John Wayne and John Ford in various movies they did. He had appearances in tons of other movies and tv shows. He is one of the actors I always looked for has having an appearance as a different character in the Have Gun, Will Travel series. My favorite role he had is probably in the 3 Godfathers.

I saw him a few years back at the Lone Pine Film Festival. I was waiting in line with his book, and they were about to take him away to something else. I said, “One more?” The lady in charge agreed and let me get the final autograph. As he was signing my name, I wanted to say at least something to him. I kind of knew the answer beforehand, but I just wanted him to say it. I asked about the status of Comanche Stallion was going. It was a movie John Ford had considered, but never did. Carey Jr. intended to put together this movie as one of the last things in his career. He told me that it was still in the pre-production stage. Then said the problem that project had was due to lack of funds. I also saw him as part of a panel on John Wayne at the same festival. I pretty sure I have video footage of part of that, but I just remember him commenting how beautiful there area around Lone Pine always is.

Huell Howser died around two weeks ago. If I remember correctly, I first encountered Huell on tv sometime in the 1980’s. I can’t remember what it was, but it was some really oddball topic he covered. Every once in a while I would turn on the tv and he would be on the local KCET showing off some area I had never heard of. I have to admit that I was never really into everything he covered, but there was always somewhere he would go on the California’s Gold show that I was glued to the screen the whole time he did it. For many years I would constantly check the schedule to see what places he would go to.

I never met him, but do know people that did. Most of them said he was very friendly like you would expect. I did get the idea from these people that he was private about some things too. There are some things I have always wondered, but maybe at the same time it’s none of my business. I mean, Huell was in the marines when he was younger. I remember him saying in an interview, in good humor while a guy was mocking one of his famous sayings in a typical Huell accent, that in the marines he learned how to kill a man in three seconds.

In any case, Huell was definitely an influence on this blog in how I go about doing things. The whole notion of just going out, finding places, and trying to figure out anything you can about them was something that has always stuck with me. I don’t know if I have mentioned this story on here, but there is one area I went and meant to show on here at some point some years back. The day I went it rained so I didn’t think the pictures and video would tell the best story on that place. I just told myself I would come back next year on a better day. Well, a few months later Huell had an episode on that place. I had to laugh because it was just an off the wall thing that I didn’t think he would ever cover.

Apparently there was some sort of remembrance for him last week at the Griffith Observatory. In my view, the best way to remember him is just taking a trip “out there”, going hiking somewhere, etc. Not necessary going somewhere he talked about on the show, but just exploring nature, the historical past, or finding something new. That I will do.

Thanks guys!

Harry Carey Article:

Huell Hower Archives: