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Date Posted: 19:36:38 11/26/15 Thu
Author: Rick (for Andy Klyde)
Subject: Very sad news...David Canary has passed away

New York, November 25, 2015 -- Like so many, I was shocked and stunned by the very sad news about David Canary revealed yesterday. Alzheimer's disease is a terrible scourge!

David and I were last in touch in 2010 when we lost David Dortort. (It was a nice, but sad, conversation.) David had been ill for some time. An early clue perhaps was the fact that David's wife Maureen replied to decline David's invitation to the 2009 BONANZA convention at Tahoe. (Prior to that, David always replied directly.) We tried to get him to attend BONANZA gatherings (starting with the 40th anniversary in 1999), and he would've come but for scheduling conflicts, mostly due to "All My Children." I recall one year he had accepted and was all set to go, but his father (who was over 90 at the time) took a tumble and he wrote he had to stay to care for him.

No one, to my knowledge, ever said a negative thing about him. (And I've spoken to many, many people who knew and worked with him.) He was a wonderful, kind, considerate and decent person. From the moment I first met him (backstage, after a performance of "The Cherry Orchard" in New York City, accompanied by Jill and George Wells), David was charming and captivating.

David was one of the very nicest people I ever knew. He was always gracious and friendly whenever I would see him at a personal appearance or play in the New York/Connecticut area. He gave me his private phone number in his dressing room at ABC and urged me to call him anytime I needed anything. Indeed, he was always willing to do anything I asked re. merchandising and licensing. (I was usually able to get relatives of his fellow "Cartwrights" to do things as well, but it was never as easy as with David. David Dortort and I chuckled about that.)

After the tragic loss of Dan blocker in the spring of 1972, producers David Dortort and Richard Collins met with Lorne Greene and Michael Landon. Their first decision was to invite David Canary to return to the show. (David had left just prior to the beginning of the 1970–71 season, because of miscommunications and a salary dispute.) Michael Landon called David personally to ask him to return. When a family loses one of its members, it's natural to close rank and pull surviving members together. David was without doubt, an integral member of the BONANZA family.

Years later, after the tragic loss of Michael Landon in 1991, David, in the midst of a full "All My Children" taping schedule, unhesitatingly accommodated Kent McCray's request to contribute to his memorial tribute, "Michael Landon: Memories With Laughter & Love." Kent and Haskell "Buzzy" Boggs took a small crew to Wilton, CT, and filmed David on a Saturday in his backyard.

In 2000, David donned his "Candy" costume (which still fit) and again worked with a crew in his backyard, filming anecdote-filled segments for PAX-TV's inaugural BONANZA Extravaganza.

As too often happens, I discovered after the fact several years ago that David had been interviewed for the Television Academy's oral history project. The interviewer's skills were mediocre and it was painfully obvious that she was something of a gushing soap opera fan and cared little for David's career besides "All My Children." David took her shortcomings in stride; he was his usual good-natured self, but it was a missed opportunity to discuss his career in greater depth, especially of course, his BONANZA years.

We are losing too many old friends and heroes from our youth. At least we have the memories, and in David's case, hours of wonderful performances preserved on film (or tape) forever.

I urge David Canary's many admirers to follow his family's advice and donate in his name to the Alzheimer’s Association at alz.org -- “David Canary Memorial Fund."

ANDY KLYDE

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Replies:

[> Re: Very sad news...David Canary has passed away -- Ponderosa Pete, 13:02:56 11/29/15 Sun [1]

Thank you, Rick, for posting Andy Klyde's heartfelt tribute to David Canary. David, without question, was an outstanding, charismatic actor, and a fine addition to the saga of the Cartwrights. We will miss David Canary, a very good and decent man. But thanks to the miracle of film and digital technology, "Candy" will ride along with the Cartwrights forever.

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[> Re: Very sad news...David Canary has passed away -- Ponderosa Pete, 13:04:08 11/29/15 Sun [1]

Thank you, Rick, for posting Andy Klyde's heartfelt tribute to David Canary. David, without question, was an outstanding, charismatic actor, and a fine addition to the saga of the Cartwrights. We will miss David Canary, a very good and decent man. But thanks to the miracle of film and digital technology, "Candy" will ride along with the Cartwrights forever on our screens, and in our hearts

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[> Re: Very sad news...David Canary has passed away -- Ponderosa Pete, 13:04:47 11/29/15 Sun [1]

Thank you, Rick, for posting Andy Klyde's heartfelt tribute to David Canary. David, without question, was an outstanding, charismatic actor, and a fine addition to the saga of the Cartwrights. We will miss David Canary, a very good and decent man. But thanks to the miracle of film and digital technology, "Candy" will ride along with the Cartwrights forever on our screens, and in our hearts.

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