On May 14, actor and musician Lew Anderson lost his battle with prostate cancer. Though he was celebrated for his role as the mute Clarabell the Clown on The Howdy Doody Show, his music career was most enduring. He was 84.
His foray into music began during World War II when he played with military bands at the Pacific Theater. Later, he became a member of the Honey Dreamers, which made appearances on TV variety shows such as The Ed Sullivan Show. It was during this time that Anderson met Buffalo Bob Smith, the star and creator of Howdy Doody, and began his acting career. During his stint as Clarabell, Anderson also served as vocal arranger for NBC’s annual Miss America Pageant for over a decade.