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 Jerry Colonna

Jerry Colonna

Birth
Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, USA
Death 21 Nov 1986 (aged 82)
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Burial Mission Hills, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Plot Section B, Lot 848, Grave 7
Memorial ID 5276 · View Source
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Actor, Comedian, Singer, Composer. He is best remembered for his popping eyes and screeching voice, and for being a popular foil for comedian Bob Hope, whom he accompanied on his USO junkets during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. Born Gerald Luigi Colonna of Italian immigrant parents in Boston, Massachusetts, he admired his grandfather's enormous moustache so much that he would describe it as "its so large that you can see it from the back" and growing up, he determined to grow one of his own. He was gifted musically, and learned both drums and the trombone. His began as a trombone player in a radio band, often cracking jokes and playing pranks on the other actors. His big break came when comedian Minerva Pious convinced her serious boss, Fred Allen, that Colonna was a great opera tenor and that Fred should give him an audition. When Jerry Colonna broke out with an ear-splitting version of "You're My Everything" Fred Allen was extremely amused and immediately gave him a guest shot on his show. These guest appearances led to movies and radio shows. During the 1930s and 1940s, he was a favorite on the “Bob Hope Radio Show” as ‘Professor Colonna’, during which he needled Hope with insults and gags. He was in several of Bob Hope's "Road" movies, and was the voice of the ‘March Hare’ in Walt Disney's "Alice in Wonderland" (1951). He suffered a stroke in 1966, which slowed him down, and suffered a major heart attack in 1979, which sent him to the hospital and required many years of nursing. He died of kidney disease in 1986.

Bio by: Kit and Morgan Benson


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 30 Apr 1999
  • Find A Grave Memorial 5276
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Jerry Colonna (17 Sep 1904–21 Nov 1986), Find A Grave Memorial no. 5276, citing San Fernando Mission Cemetery, Mission Hills, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .