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Larry "Bozo" Harmon, R.I.P.

By admin Published: July 3, 2008

(Associated Press photo)

The most important of the Bozo the Clowns on TV has died at the age of 83.

This is at once a shock to your childhood memories, and an event at some remove from your youth. As the AP story linke above notes, Harmon was both Bozo and the trainer and franchiser of other Bozos. So the clown that you knew on local TV in your youth was very likely a complete different person.

In my days of watching hosted weekday cartoons, for that matter, the local TV clown wasn't even Bozo. He was Bungles. There was also Poopdeck Pappy -- who I think was also the local weatherman -- who hosted Popeye cartoons. And I vaguely remember a show hosted by Colonel Nolde, a Southern gentleman named for the bread company that sponsored his show, but I think that was only on weekends, and didn't have cartoons.

Of course, since coming to NE Ohio, I have also heard tales of Superhost and Captain Penny and Barnaby and other mainstays of local TV. But Bozo was, if nothing else, a brand name that crossed TV's geography.

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