On Monday, Dec. 24, 2012, the world lost two amazing actors, Jack Klugman and Charles Durning, in one fell swoop. True, both lived close to a century, and as far as we know they never worked together, but they both were talented men with much in common, one of them being that they died on the same day, close to the same age.
Fans lost Klugman at 90 in Los Angeles and Durning at 89 in NYC.
Both actors were in multiple films and television shows and were not considered handsome men, but rather, they were cast as character actors who protrayed such roles handsomely!
According to Little Rock Headlines Examiner Greg Geary, Jack Klugman died in Los Angeles on Christmas Eve 2012.
Klugman was an Emmy Award and Golden Globe winner who had the starring role of Dr. Quincy in “Quincy, M.E.,” and he played Oscar Madison, opposite Tony Randall, in “The Odd Couple.”
Klugman’s last on-screen role, according to Wikipedia, was in the 2010 horror film “Camera Obscura.”
Holistic Health Examiner Diana Duel wrote that Charles Durning was one of the most successful actors in film, stage and television. This 40 year veteran played a variety of roles.
Not only was Durning an amazing actor, Wikipedia tells us that he also served in the U.S. Army during World War II.
Durning was drafted at 21 and first assigned as a rifleman with the 398th Infantry Regiment. He later served overseas with the 3rd Army Support troops and the 386th Anti-aircraft Artillery (AAA) Battalion.
For his valor and the wounds he received during the war, Durning was awarded the Silver Star, Bronze Star, and three Purple Heart medals. Additional awards include the World War II Victory Medal.
In other words, Charles Durning was a war hero!
In April 2008, Durning received the National Order of the Legion of Honor from the French consul in Los Angeles, awarded to those who served with distinction in France. During the ceremony, Durning spoke about his wartime experiences.
Charles Durning, as an actor, was honored, again in 2008, with the Life Achievement Award at the 14th Annual Screen Actors Guild Award Ceremony. That same year he was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame next to that of one of his idols, James Cagney.
The world enjoyed the many talents of these two men and will miss them. However, thanks to video technology, fans can enjoy them in films and TV shows forever!
Condolences go to the family, friends and fans of Jack Klugman and Charles Durning.