look at that familiar, winning face. surely you know him. he’s actor eddie albert.
he was in green acres with the more sane of the gabor sisters, eva. he also was in the original film version of the heartbreak kid, which was an amazing movie directed by elaine may herself.
i have seen eddie albert in many things in my life. but he was always just a nice, solid, elder actor who had little cultural relevance for me. then i learned a little bit more about this guy.
turns out eddie albert was a war hero. not only that, but while touring mexico in a circus as a high-wire act (oh yeah, he could do THAT, too), he was actually a spy for army intelligence and gathered intel on german boats that were active in that area. this was pre-world war 2.
during the war, in an incident during the battle of tarawa in the pacific, as a pilot of a coast guard vessel, he rescued 47 men under heavy fire. he earned himself a bronze star.
he had been on early television before his days as a spy, and after the war, he went right back to acting. he had a distinguished career and like a lot of celebrities of his time, he dabbled in a lot of things besides acting.
but apart from that, he had this stellar reputation as being a gem to work with. he was a bit of an activist, including being an early environmentalist, and basically seems to have epitomized the term salt-of-the-earth.
this really isn’t much of a blog post but just thinking about memorial day recently i thought of what i knew about eddie albert and thought – they don’t make celebrities like him anymore.
maybe they do, but i haven’t heard of them.
below, just for the hell of it, hear eddie albert sing ‘don’t think twice, it’s all right’, a bob dylan song:
and below, a clip from green acres: