From ANIMAL PEOPLE, July/August 2011:
“I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them. The good is oft interred with their bones.” –William Shakespeare
Peter Falk, 82, died on June 23, 2011. Born in New York City, Falk was introduced to acting at age 12 by Camp High Point counselor Ross Martin, who also went on to Hollywood success. After World War II duty in the U.S. Merchant Marine, and a six-month stint as a railroad worker in Yugoslavia, Falk earned a Master of Public Administration degree and became a management analyst with the Connecticut State Budget Bureau in Hartford. After hours he acted at a local community theatre and took acting classes. Falk was nearly 30 before acting professionally, and his first professional stage appearance was in a play that closed after just one performance, but within the year he landed his first Broadway role, and by 1958 was getting small film parts. His 1960 performance in Murder, Inc. won an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor. Falk rose to stardom playing a variety of roles, but is best remembered for playing the detective Columbo in made-for-TV films produced between 1968 and 2003, and in the 1971-1978 television series Columbo. “Falk generously donated his time to help animals by supporting In Defense of Animals’ Guardian Campaign, to convince people that the word ‘guardian’ is a more appropriate word than ‘owner’ to describe our relationship with animals,” recalled In Defense of Animals founder Elliot Katz. “In IDA’s 30-second ‘Be A Guardian: Adopt and Save A Life’ public service announcement,” Katz contined, “Falk and his wife Shera Danese appear with world-renowned primatologist Jane Goodall, and actors Wendie Malick and Kristen Bell. They urge people to save animal lives by adopting from shelters, and to always act as guardians of animals, not owners. Falk and his late wife were passionate about rescuing dogs,” Katz said, “and lived with rescued shelter dogs.”
Edward Gardner, 38, of Naperville, Illinois, was killed by an airport limousine on May 30, 2011 while trying to shoo a family of ducklings off the roadway near the O’Hare Oasis at Schiller Park. Gardner apparently did not use his vehicle to block oncoming traffic.
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