Robert Clary, ‘Hogan’s Heroes’ actor, dies at 96

Robert Clary, a French-born survivor of Nazi focus camps all through Global Conflict II who performed a feisty prisoner of struggle within the unbelievable Sixties sitcom “Hogan’s Heroes,” died Nov. 16 at his house in Beverly Hills, Calif. He used to be 96.

His niece Brenda Hancock showed the loss of life however didn’t supply a purpose.

Mr. Clary started his profession in Paris as a nightclub singer and gave the impression onstage in musicals and had small movie roles ahead of showing in “Hogan’s Heroes.” The CBS comedy, by which Allied infantrymen in a POW camp bested their clownish German military captors with espionage schemes, performed the struggle strictly for laughs all through its 1965-71 run. The 5-foot-1 Mr. Clary sported a beret and a sardonic smile as Cpl. Louis LeBeau.

Mr. Clary used to be the remaining surviving unique celebrity of the sitcom that integrated Bob Crane, Richard Dawson, Larry Hovis and Ivan Dixon because the prisoners. Werner Klemperer and John Banner, who performed their captors, have been Ecu Jews who fled Nazi persecution ahead of the struggle.

Mr. Clary remained publicly silent about his personal wartime enjoy till 1980 when, Mr. Clary mentioned, he used to be provoked to talk out by means of those that denied or lowered the orchestrated effort by means of Nazi Germany to exterminate Jews. Twelve of his speedy members of the family — his oldsters and 10 siblings — have been killed underneath the Nazis, Mr. Clary wrote in a biography posted on his web site.

A documentary about Mr. Clary’s youth and years of horror at Nazi palms, “Robert Clary, A5714: A Memoir of Liberation,” used to be launched in 1985. The forearms of focus camp prisoners have been tattooed with id numbers, with A5714 to be Mr. Clary’s lifelong mark.

In 1997, he used to be amongst dozens of Holocaust survivors whose portraits and tales have been integrated in “The Triumphant Spirit,” a e-book by means of photographer Nick Del Calzo. “I encourage the following era to not do what folks have carried out for hundreds of years — hate others as a result of their pores and skin, form in their eyes, or non secular choice,” Mr. Clary mentioned in an interview on the time.

Mr. Clary used to be born Robert Max Widerman in Paris on March 1, 1926, and used to be the youngest of 14 kids. He used to be 16 when he and maximum of his circle of relatives have been taken by means of the Nazis.

Within the documentary, he recalled a cheerful youth till he and his circle of relatives have been compelled from their Paris condo and put right into a crowded livestock automotive that carried them to focus camps.

Following 31 months in captivity in numerous focus camps, he used to be liberated from the Buchenwald loss of life camp by means of U.S. troops. Returning to Paris, the place he used to be reunited with two older sisters who had have shyed away from the loss of life camps, he labored as a singer and recorded songs that become well-liked in The united states.

After coming to the US in 1949, he moved from membership dates and recording to Broadway musicals, together with “New Faces of 1952,” after which to motion pictures. He gave the impression in motion pictures together with “Thief of Damascus” (1952), “A New Roughly Love” (1963) and “The Hindenburg” (1975). He additionally acted in cleaning soap operas similar to “The Younger and the Stressed,” “Days of Our Lives” and “The Daring and the Gorgeous.”

Mr. Clary married Natalie Cantor, the daughter of singer-actor Eddie Cantor, in 1965. She died in 1997. He had no kids.

He mentioned he didn’t really feel uneasy in regards to the comedy on “Hogan’s Heroes” in spite of the tragedy of his circle of relatives’s devastating struggle enjoy.

“It used to be utterly other,” he as soon as defined. “I do know they [POWs] had a horrible lifestyles, however in comparison to focus camps and gasoline chambers it used to be like a vacation.”

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