(April 19, 1925 – September 6, 2016)
I can always count on this blog to be a total joy to work on — except for when it comes to posts like this. Hugh O’Brian, who for so many will always be TV’s Wyatt Earp, has passed away at 91.
Before making his way into movies and TV, O’Brian — whose real name is Hugh Charles Krampe — dropped out of college to fight in World War II. At 17, he became the Marines’ youngest drill instructor.
O’Brian appeared in a number of Westerns before landing the Earp role, from The Return Of Jesse James (1950) to The Lawless Breed (1953) to The Brass Legend (1956). He’d go on to appear in The Shootist (1976).
He was tremendously dedicated to the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership, a non-profit leadership development program for high school kids.