Lost among the recent spate of celebrity deaths you may have missed the passing of a great comic, Fred Travalena
Fred was one of those guys who I saw on TV when I was a kid I was growing up in Kentucky. My Dad loved comedy and would laugh out loud at the comics on late night shows. Fred Travalena, the young and unhip George Carlin, John Byner, and a host of other were the ones that inspired me to get into stand-up. Years later it was a great thrill for me when I got to meet a lot of them. I met Fred on a cruise ship when we worked together several years ago. He was gracious and friendly and we talked about comedy for several hours one afternoon.
Fred wasn’t the most famous comic but few surpassed his work ethic or longevity in the toughest business in the world. He worked constantly and was still a frequent guest on the talk show circuit. Most of all he was a regular guy. He never was in trouble with the law or in rehab. Married to his wife for 39 years he lived a normal life and what I have heard from folks who knew him well is that he was always a gentleman.
He had battled several types of cancer over the last six years and finally lost his battle last week. If you want to know more about Fred or contribute to his memorial charity fund drop by his web site www.fredtravalena.com . If you are unfamiliar with Fred and his work there are also some great videos there.