Don Adams, 82 (Maxwell Smart)

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Jim Beaver

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Sep 26, 2005, 12:43:38 PM9/26/05
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My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.

Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.

Jim Beaver

DON ADAMS

OBITUARY

September 25, 2005

Don Adams, who gained worldwide fame and three Emmy Awards starring as Agent
86, Maxwell Smart, in the classic television comedy GET SMART, died at 8:02
p.m PDT, Sunday, September 25, 2005, at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Beverly
Hills. He was 82. Although he had been in failing health for more than two
years due to bone lymphoma, his death resulted from a sudden lung infection
for which he was hospitalized the previous day.

Born Donald James Yarmy on April 13, 1923 [correct, despite frequently
reported erroneous dates] in New York City to Irish-Hungarian parents, Adams
hoped for an engineering career. He joined the U.S. Marines in the early
days of World War II and served as a drill instructor. He saw combat in the
invasion of Guadalcanal and was the only survivor of his platoon. He
contracted blackwater fever and nearly died, remaining hospitalized for more
than a year.

Following the war, he embarked on a career as an impressionist and stand-up
comedian, appearing in small clubs in Florida and Washington D.C. He married
singer Adelaide Adams and took her professional last name as his own stage
name. In 1954, his stand-up act, written with his boyhood friend Bill Dana,
landed him a contestant spot on ARTHUR GODFREY'S TALENT SCOUTS, which he
won. This led to scores of appearances on comedy and variety series such as
THE STEVE ALLEN SHOW and Ed Sullivan's THE TOAST OF THE TOWN, and ultimately
to a regular job on THE PERRY COMO SHOW. He also played in stock and in 1962
starred with Anthony Perkins in the Broadway play HAROLD.


Divorced and remarried (to dancer Dorothy Bracken), Adams in 1963 reunited
with Bill Dana on THE BILL DANA SHOW, playing inept hotel detective Byron
Glick, a forerunner to his most famous characterization. NBC placed Adams
under contract and gave him the starring role in Mel Brooks's and Buck Henry's
spy spoof GET SMART. As the bumbling yet intrepid secret agent Maxwell
Smart, Adams was an instant success. With his alluring straight-woman
partner Agent 99 (Barbara Feldon), Adams became a comic icon of the 1960s,
popularizing dozens of catch-phrases that still resound today: "Would you
believe?", "Missed it by THAT much!", "...and LOVING it!" and "Sorry about
that, Chief."

Adams reveled in the show and its popularity, and particularly enjoyed
writing and directing several episodes. GET SMART ran for five seasons and
brought Adams wealth, awards, and worldwide fame. At the same time, he
continued to achieve recognition as one of the funniest and most popular
stand-up comedians of his generation.

Adams returned in a new series in 1971, THE PARTNERS, which, though slightly
more serious than GET SMART, still had him playing a bumbling
law-enforcement officer. This time he starred with Rupert Crosse, the two
playing a pair of none-too-bright detectives. The show lasted one season.
Except for the intriguing but unsuccessful DON ADAMS'S SCREEN TEST (a
contest show in which Adams directed famous stars and amateurs in scenes
from classic movies), he did not return to series television for fourteen
years.

Instead he guest-starred on sitcoms, variety shows, and occasional TV
movies. He played Las Vegas showrooms and nightclubs, though he grew
increasingly reluctant to perform before live audiences. With the
distinctive voice of his on-screen persona, he had long been active in
voice-over work. Even during the GET SMART period he had been popular among
children as the voice of the animated TENNESSE TUXEDO, and later was even
more popular in his title role as INSPECTOR GADGET.

Divorced again, he married a third time in 1977 (to Judy Luciano). During
this period, Adams starred in and directed a number of commercials, winning
a CLIO Award for directing. In 1980, he reluctantly returned to the Maxwell
Smart character in a feature film, THE NUDE BOMB, which he hated. He also
brought the character briefly back to television in the 1989 TV movie GET
SMART, AGAIN!

In 1985, he returned to series television in a Canadian sitcom, CHECK IT
OUT, in which he played the manager of a supermarket. The show was popular
enough to run for three seasons on American TV, but it mainly provided a
paycheck for Adams and a co-starring role for a pre-NYPD BLUE Gordon Clapp.

In later years, he hoped for a chance at serious roles, of which he had done
many in his early years in summer stock. But the opportunity never arrived.
A role was actually written for him by his son-in-law for the revived ALFRED
HITCHCOCK PRESENTS in 1986, but the producers feared he could not subsume
his comedic persona, and the role went to Martin Landau.

Instead, he returned to the role that had made him world famous, in a third
revival of Maxwell Smart. The 1995 series version of GET SMART featured
Adams as Smart, now promoted to Chief of the secret agency CONTROL. Barbara
Feldon also returned as his wife and colleague, but instead of the couple
who had made television history, the show focused on the bumbling spy
efforts of their son Zach Smart. Only seven episodes aired before the new
show was cancelled.

Adams spent the remainder of his career doing commercials and voice work,
mostly in new INSPECTOR GADGET productions. In 1999, he made a cameo voice
appearance in the live-action INSPECTOR GADGET feature film starring Matthew
Broderick as Gadget.

Like his brother, the late comedian Dick Yarmy, Adams was an inveterate
horse-player. His leisure time was largely spent either at racetracks or in
card games at the Playboy Mansion, and with pals such as Hugh Hefner, James
Caan, and Don Rickles. Divorced for the third time, he lived alone in a
luxury apartment in Century City. He was a devoted history buff, and was an
amateur expert on the lives of Abraham Lincoln and Adolf Hitler. He was a
talented poet and painter and had at one time considered a career as an
artist.

His health declined in recent years with the onset of lymphoma, but took a
precipitous turn for the worse following the death last year of his
daughter, actress-casting director Cecily Adams. In recent weeks he had
declined to continue medications or treatment for his ailments. Following
his emergency hospitalization on September 24, he was unable to breathe on
his own. As per his instructions, life-support systems were turned off
Sunday night. Two of his former wives and three of his children, as well as
other family members, were with him when he died.

Adams is survived by six of his seven children: Daughters Carolyn Steele (of
Pahoa, Hawaii), Christine Adams (of Elkridge, Maryland), Cathy Metchik (of
Henderson, Nevada), [Paramount TV executive] Stacey Adams, and Beige Adams,
and son Sean Adams (all of Los Angeles); by five of his seven grandchildren
(another is expected in November); and by three great-grandchildren.

There will be a private memorial service. Burial will be with Marine Corps
honors at an undetermined location.

Memorial donations may be made to the Motion Picture & Television Fund, MPTF
Foundation,
22212 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 300, Woodland Hills CA 91364.


King Daevid MacKenzie

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Sep 26, 2005, 12:52:13 PM9/26/05
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...Jim, my thoughts and condolences are with you. Rest assured, as I
hope he realised, that the laughter he generated will continue to warm
the human spirit for decades to come...

--
--
King Daevid MacKenzie, WLSU-FM 88.9 La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA
heard again soon at http://whiterosesociety.org
"Rarely can we applaud the majority." JAMES NEIBAUR

MWB

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Sep 26, 2005, 12:58:03 PM9/26/05
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I'm very saddened to hear of his passing. He was a treasure.

Prayers and thoughts are with you and your family.


A very nice obituary Jim


Mark


deb...@comcast.net

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:01:05 PM9/26/05
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Very sad to hear this.

theresa

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:08:40 PM9/26/05
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A unique and talented actor -- I will miss his work...

RIP

doc

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:18:29 PM9/26/05
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"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in news:_yVZe.243$DY.127
@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com:

> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
>

My condolences, Jim. This has truly been a difficult year for you.


J. Eric Durbin

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:19:42 PM9/26/05
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On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"
<jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.

Damn!

"I told you not to tell me that."

Don Adams not only brought a lot of fun to my generation and many that
followed, he affected our day-to-day lexicon with phrases like the one
above.

He'll be remembered as long as they continue to show reruns of his TV
series and performances.

_jd

danny burstein

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:22:15 PM9/26/05
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In <64bgj11jbfh212v7s...@4ax.com> J. Eric Durbin <zyz...@plenipotentiary.com.invalid> writes:

>Damn!

>"I told you not to tell me that."

>Don Adams not only brought a lot of fun to my generation and many that
>followed, he affected our day-to-day lexicon with phrases like the one
>above.

Wasn't he also one of the voices in Mathnet?

>He'll be remembered as long as they continue to show reruns of his TV
>series and performances.

Indeed he shall. And he shall also be missed.
--
_____________________________________________________
Knowledge may be power, but communications is the key
dan...@panix.com
[to foil spammers, my address has been double rot-13 encoded]

Laurie Mann

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:22:53 PM9/26/05
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Jim, my condolences, and thanks so much for taking the time to write a
very complete obituary.


Laurie Mann
Dead People Server
http://www.deadpeople.info

PirateJohn

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:24:33 PM9/26/05
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RIP Mr. Adams, and hang in there Jim.

bagley@yahoo.com Jack Bagley

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:29:42 PM9/26/05
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Jim...

My deepest condolences. You've suffered yet another devastating loss, and
you remain in my thoughts and prayers. If there's anything I can do for
you, let me know.

Jack


"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in message
news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com...

Sanford Manley

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:40:03 PM9/26/05
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Jim Beaver said:
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>

My father,deceased, thought he was the funniest man. He
was a very big fan of Get Smart. I am so sorry. Really.


--
Sanford M. Manley
"The urge to save humanity is almost
always a false front for the
urge to rule." - H.L. Mencken
I am The Ansaman! http://www.ansaman.com

Boron Elgar

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:43:39 PM9/26/05
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On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"
<jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
>Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>
>Jim Beaver
>
>DON ADAMS
>
>OBITUARY
>
>September 25, 2005

snip

My deepest sympathies, Jim.

Thank you for sharing the beautiful mini-bio of your father-in-law.

You have had too many sorrows of late. May the future bring you and
yours great happiness and contentment.

Boron

deb...@comcast.net

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:43:38 PM9/26/05
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Losing Gilligan & Maxwell Smart in the same month is almost too much
to bear!

nudnik

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:45:14 PM9/26/05
to
Mr Beaver:

I'm very sorry to hear of Don Adams' passing. He was a comic genius.

best wishes to you & your family. you have had so much sorry the last 20
months.

ralph

"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in message
news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com...

Kathy

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:49:27 PM9/26/05
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"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in message
news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com...
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>
> Jim Beaver
>
> DON ADAMS
>
> OBITUARY
>
> September 25, 2005
>
> Don Adams, who gained worldwide fame and three Emmy Awards starring as
> Agent 86, Maxwell Smart, in the classic television comedy GET SMART, died
> at 8:02 p.m PDT, Sunday, September 25, 2005, at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in
> Beverly Hills.

Jim, my deepest sympathies go to you and Maddie, and the rest of Mr. Adams
family. It's never easy losing a parent, even an in-law.

Kathy Wajerski


Barbara Sherrill

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Sep 26, 2005, 1:52:40 PM9/26/05
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Beautiful Obit Jim. I am sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and
your family.

Barbara


Charlene

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Sep 26, 2005, 2:01:49 PM9/26/05
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My deepest condolences. The past few years haven't been easy for your
family; please let them know, and please know yourself, how many of
us are thinking of and praying for you.

I feel so much for your daughter.

wd41

~Mary O'Neill

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Sep 26, 2005, 2:01:56 PM9/26/05
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My condolances to you and the Adams' family. I enjoyed Don in Get
Smart. My oldest daughter at the age of three loved Inspector Gadget.
Very well written obituary Jim.

Mary O'Neill

Kathi

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Sep 26, 2005, 2:08:38 PM9/26/05
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On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"
<jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.

Jim, I'm so very sorry to learn of Don's passing. Please accept my
deepest sympathy, and regards from my entire family to yours.

Kathi


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J.D. Baldwin

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Sep 26, 2005, 2:43:15 PM9/26/05
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Jeez, I knew Adams was a veteran of combat in the Pacific Theater, but
I always (for some reason) thought he was Army. I really hate getting
that kind of detail wrong, especially about Marines.

Anyway, RIP.
--
_+_ From the catapult of |If anyone disagrees with any statement I make, I
_|70|___:)=}- J.D. Baldwin |am quite prepared not only to retract it, but also
\ / bal...@panix.com|to deny under oath that I ever made it. -T. Lehrer
***~~~~-----------------------------------------------------------------------

deb...@comcast.net

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Sep 26, 2005, 3:01:45 PM9/26/05
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"Get Smart" premiered 40 years ago this month (Sep.1, 1965)

A. Kimbrough

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Sep 26, 2005, 3:02:47 PM9/26/05
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God bless his soul. My prayers are for you and your family.


att...@aol.com

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Sep 26, 2005, 3:17:06 PM9/26/05
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Your father-in-law brought so much joy to the world through laughter.
My family continues to offer prayers for you and your daughter. Thank
you for sharing your wonderful obituary with you alt.obit family.

Bob Flaminio

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Sep 26, 2005, 3:31:09 PM9/26/05
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Jim Beaver wrote:
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night.

My condolences. He was a great man, and will be making people laugh long
after most of us have shuffled on.

--
Bob


MGW

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Sep 26, 2005, 3:36:28 PM9/26/05
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On 26 Sep 2005 10:22:53 -0700, "Laurie Mann" <lau...@dpsinfo.com>
scrawled:

>Jim, my condolences, and thanks so much for taking the time to write a
>very complete obituary.

Same here. I'm sorry this has been such a tough year for you. Your
fil will be greatly missed.

--

MGW
Information on Hurricane Assistance - http://uniquelygifted.org/katrina.htm

Glitter Ninja

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Sep 26, 2005, 4:02:11 PM9/26/05
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"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> writes:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.

Jim, I am so sorry for your loss. You've had to deal with a lot
lately and you've been so strong through it all.

Stacia

Message has been deleted

Corby Gilmore

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Sep 26, 2005, 4:37:21 PM9/26/05
to

"Jim Beaver" (jumb...@prodigy.spam) writes:
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>
> Jim Beaver
>
> DON ADAMS
>
> OBITUARY
>
> September 25, 2005
>
> Don Adams, who gained worldwide fame and three Emmy Awards starring as Agent
> 86, Maxwell Smart, in the classic television comedy GET SMART, died at 8:02
> p.m PDT, Sunday, September 25, 2005, at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Beverly
> Hills. He was 82. Although he had been in failing health for more than two
> years due to bone lymphoma, his death resulted from a sudden lung infection
> for which he was hospitalized the previous day.

Jim, my deepest condolences to you, Madeleine Rose and the entire Adams
family. You wrote a beautiful obituary; I doubt that anyone else could
have done it justice.

I have to tell you that I had Don on my AO deadpool list, but this was
the one name that I hoped I didnt get points for. I hope that I have
not offended you with this choice; if I have I am truly sorry.

You have been through too much in the last 2 years; be strong, as I know
you will, and bless you and Madeleine Rose.
--
Corby Gilmore
co...@ncf.ca

Evelyn McHugh

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Sep 26, 2005, 4:43:21 PM9/26/05
to
Jim Beaver wrote:
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
Wonderfully done, Jim.

Your father-in-law reached three generations in my family, from the
gigantic B&W RCA Victor in my childhood living room, to the little flat
screen on my desk, and many places in between.

We should all be so well remembered by our family. And those we touched.

Louis Epstein

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Sep 26, 2005, 4:54:00 PM9/26/05
to
Jim Beaver <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:
: My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
:
: Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.

:
: Jim Beaver
:
: DON ADAMS
:
: OBITUARY
:
: September 25, 2005
:
: Don Adams, who gained worldwide fame and three Emmy Awards starring as Agent
: 86, Maxwell Smart, in the classic television comedy GET SMART, died at 8:02
: p.m PDT, Sunday, September 25, 2005, at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Beverly
: Hills. He was 82. Although he had been in failing health for more than two
: years due to bone lymphoma, his death resulted from a sudden lung infection
: for which he was hospitalized the previous day.
:
: Born Donald James Yarmy on April 13, 1923 [correct, despite frequently
: reported erroneous dates] in New York City to Irish-Hungarian parents, Adams
: hoped for an engineering career. He joined the U.S. Marines in the early
: days of World War II and served as a drill instructor. He saw combat in the
: invasion of Guadalcanal and was the only survivor of his platoon. He
: contracted blackwater fever and nearly died, remaining hospitalized for
: more than a year.

I had read the AP obit before logging into the newsgroup...
but the obits were the first place I learned that he had been
a Marine drill sergeant.That is one kind of job one could only
have before becoming an icon of comedy...looking back at his
life I have trouble thinking of trainees taking him seriously
though I don't doubt he was serious!

:
: Adams returned in a new series in 1971, THE PARTNERS, which, though slightly

: more serious than GET SMART, still had him playing a bumbling
: law-enforcement officer. This time he starred with Rupert Crosse, the two
: playing a pair of none-too-bright detectives. The show lasted one season.
: Except for the intriguing but unsuccessful DON ADAMS'S SCREEN TEST (a
: contest show in which Adams directed famous stars and amateurs in scenes
: from classic movies), he did not return to series television for fourteen
: years.

Let the record show that I watched both of these,if not every time.


: In later years, he hoped for a chance at serious roles, of which he had done

: many in his early years in summer stock. But the opportunity never arrived.
: A role was actually written for him by his son-in-law for the revived ALFRED
: HITCHCOCK PRESENTS in 1986, but the producers feared he could not subsume
: his comedic persona, and the role went to Martin Landau.

Was that another son-in-law,Jim?

I wish I could fish for a joke asking to repeat the part after
the first sentence...but sometimes bad news is beyond a Maxwell
Smart joke.

Sad to hear he's gone,it sounds like he wanted to go.

-=-=-
The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.

TWPJR

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 5:12:49 PM9/26/05
to
My deepest sympathies, Jim.

Our prayers are with your family and Don will be deeply missed.

Tom

cr

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Sep 26, 2005, 5:20:47 PM9/26/05
to
I'm so sorry to hear this, Jim. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and
yours.

Mr. Adams has always been one of my favorite people. Just hearing his
instantly-recognizable voice always made a show worth watching!

C. Reid
Texas


Chef Juke

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Sep 26, 2005, 5:24:13 PM9/26/05
to
On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"
<jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>

Jim,

I just saw the headline on Yahoo and immediately thought of you and
your family.

My condolences.

-Chef Juke
"EVERYbody Eats When They Come To MY House!"

Bob Feigel

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Sep 26, 2005, 5:49:08 PM9/26/05
to
On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"
<jumb...@prodigy.spam> magnanimously proffered:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>

>Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>
>Jim Beaver

<Reluctantly snipped>

After shuffling out to the kitchen this morning and absently mindedly
switching on the radio I learned of your father-in-law's death at the
top of the news: "The world of entertainment says goodbye to Agent
86."

My thoughts immediately went to you and your family. My sincere
condolences, b


"It's not that I'm afraid to die. I just don't want to be there when it happens." - Woody Allen

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Wax-up and drop-in of Surfing's Golden Years: <http://www.surfwriter.net>
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

MWB

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Sep 26, 2005, 5:56:53 PM9/26/05
to

<deb...@comcast.net> wrote in message
news:1127756618....@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...

> Losing Gilligan & Maxwell Smart in the same month is almost too much
> to bear!
>

Don't forget Tennessee Tuxedo and Inspector Gadget.

Not a good day.


Mark


Jim Beaver

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Sep 26, 2005, 6:13:33 PM9/26/05
to

"Louis Epstein" <l...@main.put.com> wrote in message
news:JMudnTHkL5d...@velocitywest.net...

> Jim Beaver <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:
>
> : In later years, he hoped for a chance at serious roles, of which he had
> done
> : many in his early years in summer stock. But the opportunity never
> arrived.
> : A role was actually written for him by his son-in-law for the revived
> ALFRED
> : HITCHCOCK PRESENTS in 1986, but the producers feared he could not
> subsume
> : his comedic persona, and the role went to Martin Landau.
>
> Was that another son-in-law,Jim?

Uh, well, no, I guess it wasn't another son-in-law.


>
> I wish I could fish for a joke asking to repeat the part after
> the first sentence...but sometimes bad news is beyond a Maxwell
> Smart joke.

I don't know about that. Someone just emailed me a line from Get Smart that
I am certain Don would have liked as his epitaph -- I certainly heard him
use it many times in real life:

"When I die, I don't want a big fancy funeral. I just want a few close
friends to get together and bring me back to life."

Missed it by that much.

Jim Beaver


leno...@yahoo.com

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Sep 26, 2005, 6:15:53 PM9/26/05
to
Very sorry. I loved his show.

I'm also sorry to tell you that in Ann Lloyd's otherwise wonderful
"Illustrated Who's Who In Cinema" (the 1983 edition, anyway) Mr. Adams
is not listed. Then again, neither is Mel Gibson, Peter Cook, or the
Nicholas Brothers. It's hard to figure out, sometimes!

Lenona.

Jim Beaver

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Sep 26, 2005, 6:20:45 PM9/26/05
to

"Corby Gilmore" <ai...@FreeNet.Carleton.CA> wrote in message
news:dh9m61$mv5$1...@theodyn.ncf.ca...

>
>
> Jim, my deepest condolences to you, Madeleine Rose and the entire Adams
> family. You wrote a beautiful obituary; I doubt that anyone else could
> have done it justice.
>
> I have to tell you that I had Don on my AO deadpool list, but this was
> the one name that I hoped I didnt get points for. I hope that I have
> not offended you with this choice; if I have I am truly sorry.
>
> You have been through too much in the last 2 years; be strong, as I know
> you will, and bless you and Madeleine Rose.

Thanks, Corby. No offense at all, not remotely. That's what we do here.
If I were a deadpool player, I'd have probably had him on mine. Of course I
had inside information.

Thanks for the kind thoughts. Don was tough to be around, a hardcase in a
lot of ways, and he wasn't very good at personal relationships, but I liked
him and I was surprised to find that he liked me, since I'm not remotely the
type of guy he gravitated toward. I remember I wrote a play that my wife
and I appeared in, about a sweet and gentle German tourist who falls for a
New York City street mime and takes her away from her tough and abusive
Brooklyn boyfriend. Don couldn't understand why the girl would ever want to
be with "that Kraut wimp" when she could have stayed with "the cool guy from
Brooklyn." But he somehow made room for this Kraut wimp in his life, and
despite lots of difficulties (Cecily used to say she was raised by wolves),
he and I got along very well.

Jim Beaver


SO

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 6:26:30 PM9/26/05
to
Jim--

So sorry for your loss.

But remember, all great actors are immortal.

And certainly your father-in-law was one of television's greatest.

Scott O.


James Neibaur

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 6:34:46 PM9/26/05
to
Jim Beaver 9/26/05 11:43 AM

> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.

I am very sorry to hear about this, Jim. My condolences to that side of
your family.

He was a funny man and had a lot of longtime fans.

JN

deb...@comcast.net

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 6:38:32 PM9/26/05
to
I hope A & E reruns it's biography of Don Adams. I wanted to watch it
last time, but missed it by thaaat much...

mpoco...@aol.com

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 6:39:34 PM9/26/05
to
My deepest condolences are with you and your family at this difficult
time, Jim.

I only knew him from his TV work, and Don Adams was a comic genius. My
aunt was actually a contestant on his Don Adams Screen Test show back
in the 70's, and IIRC the special guest star was Vincent Price and she
actually got to recreate a film scene with him.

Laurie Mann

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 6:51:38 PM9/26/05
to
[[This is starting to drift off-topic here, but...]]

>Leora wrote:
>I'm also sorry to tell you that in Ann Lloyd's otherwise wonderful
>"Illustrated Who's Who In Cinema" (the 1983 edition, anyway) Mr. Adams
>is not listed. Then again, neither is Mel Gibson, Peter Cook, or the
>Nicholas Brothers. It's hard to figure out, sometimes!

While Don Adams made lots of TV, he hardly made any movies. If you'd
checked IMDB, you'd see he was only in two movies before 1983, Mel
Gibson was only credited in seven movies before 1983 (though two of
them were Mad Max movies and one of them was Gallipoli and all but one
was Australian), and Peter Cook was in ten movies before 1983 (though
one of them was Bedazzled). The Nicholas Brothers were in many more
than the rest of those folks combined, though they were normally doing
the dance act. According to Amazon, the 1987 version of this book was
480 pages. When you think of all of the thousands of people who
starred in movies before 1983 (or 1987), you can kind of see why people
who'd only made a few movies weren't included. It's sort of like
saying "Don Adams was in a Broadway show, why wasn't he included in a
'Who's Who of Broadway'?"

On the other hand, if you were making that complaint about a book about
television stars, I'd agree with you 1,000%.

Brigid Nelson

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 7:29:22 PM9/26/05
to
On 26 Sep 2005 20:37:21 GMT, ai...@FreeNet.Carleton.CA (Corby Gilmore)
wrote:

>
>"Jim Beaver" (jumb...@prodigy.spam) writes:
>> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>>
>> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>>
>> Jim Beaver
>>
>> DON ADAMS
>>
>> OBITUARY
>>
>> September 25, 2005
>

> I have to tell you that I had Don on my AO deadpool list, but this was
>the one name that I hoped I didnt get points for. I hope that I have
>not offended you with this choice; if I have I am truly sorry.
>

I did too, and for the longest time I thought being on my list would
ensure survival - after all it worked for Christian Slater.

This last year or so must have been terrible for him. As much as
he'll be missed I hope he's gone to a better place.

With sincere condolences,
Brigid

James Neibaur

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 7:30:22 PM9/26/05
to
Corby Gilmore 9/26/05 3:37 PM

> I have to tell you that I had Don on my AO deadpool list, but this was
> the one name that I hoped I didnt get points for. I hope that I have
> not offended you with this choice; if I have I am truly sorry.

I know how you feel. I was going to put him on mine, but I felt so badly
about doing so (because Jim is a friend) that I couldn't. I suppose it is
no different than playing the same game with names like Eddie Albert and
Johnny Carson, despite not being acquainted with anyone from their family.

JN

theresa

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 7:41:56 PM9/26/05
to

That's why I hate those bloody lists -- when someone you really
admire goes, you realize your good-bye consists of points...

Busgal

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 7:47:28 PM9/26/05
to
Jim thank you for a nice tribute. Get smart was one of my favoretes.

Message has been deleted

Aje RavenStar

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 8:30:47 PM9/26/05
to

"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in message
news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com...

> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>
> Jim Beaver
>

I loved the Don Adam's Screen Test. As I remember, it ran here in Houston
on a UHF channel. I was working shift work at the time, so I don't know if
I saw every episode. I particularly remember the show with Oliver Reed.

Deepest sympathy to all your folks, Jim.


deb...@comcast.net

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 9:01:23 PM9/26/05
to
An episode of "Get Smart" that has stayed in my memory is one with Pat
Paulsen as a disgruntled agent killing off Control agents. It was
called "The Mess of Adrian Lisinger".

Tim Dunleavy

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 9:02:29 PM9/26/05
to
Jim, I hope he was happy knowing how much he made us happy. Corny, but
true.
-Tim

On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"

deb...@comcast.net

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 9:05:00 PM9/26/05
to
I remember a "Get Smart" episode in which Johnny Carson made a cameo
appearance as a train conductor! Also another in which Pat Paulsen
played an ex agent intent on killing Control agents. It was called "

To...@fred.net

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 9:38:15 PM9/26/05
to
We all knew, when the time came, you'd be the one to tell us.

Wonderful literary tribute.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you and the family.

--
To...@Fred.Net http://www.fred.net/tomr

* "Hello, girls.... I'm the Easter Bunny!" - Janet Reno, "South Park"
* Look out! If Bender says "ass", Katherine Harris will appear!
* Remember The Pentagon: The Jan Brady of 9/11

"'Welcome to F*ckin' Deadwood!' 'Rob and Amber, you are the last team to
arrive....'" - David Milch's 'The Amazing Race'

Mary Kay Bergman 1961-1999 - http://www.mkbmemorial.com/
"It's been a lot of fun." - Alison Brooks

William Barger

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 9:32:51 PM9/26/05
to
What a well written obit. Don Adams brought laughter to our house,
that's for sure. The whole family loved "Get Smart" An instinctively
funny man that will continue to bring smiles for years to come.
Bill


Loki

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 9:48:05 PM9/26/05
to
On Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:43:38 GMT, "Jim Beaver"
<jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:

>My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.


My sympathies on your loss Jim.


Loki

If you want to show support to our troops,
you can get some ideas of how to do so at:
http://www.anysoldier.com/index.cfm

I encourage everyone to check it out,
respond from the heart, and pass it
along to anyone you think may want
to remember our troops throughout the year.

Message has been deleted

van...@gmail.com

unread,
Sep 26, 2005, 10:48:56 PM9/26/05
to
I'm so sorry to hear this! You have our sincerest condolences, from two
generations of our family - Inspector Gadget was a fixture in our house
as much as Agent 86.

BCNU,
Rob in Dago

mwestport

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 2:17:22 AM9/27/05
to
"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in
news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com:

> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>

> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>

>

My condolences, Mr. Beaver, to your Family and the rest of the Adams clan.
Your father in Law sounds like he was a lot of fun. I would have liked to
talk Lincoln with him. He brought ne many hours of laughter.

I thought of you when I heard this sad news tonight on TV. You have had a
difficult year. I always enjoy your posts and hearing whats going on with
you and your show.

Kevin King
Mwestport

Charlene

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 4:13:07 AM9/27/05
to
User Friendly (http://www.userfriendly.org/) has a nice if subtle
tribute to Don Adams today.

Well, more of a tribute to Maxwell Smart, but still.

wd41

Message has been deleted
Message has been deleted
Message has been deleted

miketrekker

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 6:14:06 AM9/27/05
to

Jim Beaver wrote:
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>
> Jim Beaver
>
> DON ADAMS
>
> OBITUARY
>
> September 25, 2005
>
> Don Adams, who gained worldwide fame and three Emmy Awards starring as Agent
> 86, Maxwell Smart, in the classic television comedy GET SMART, died at 8:02
> p.m PDT, Sunday, September 25, 2005, at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Beverly
> Hills. He was 82. Although he had been in failing health for more than two
> years due to bone lymphoma, his death resulted from a sudden lung infection
> for which he was hospitalized the previous day.
>
> Born Donald James Yarmy on April 13, 1923 [correct, despite frequently
> reported erroneous dates] in New York City to Irish-Hungarian parents, Adams
> hoped for an engineering career. He joined the U.S. Marines in the early
> days of World War II and served as a drill instructor. He saw combat in the
> invasion of Guadalcanal and was the only survivor of his platoon. He
> contracted blackwater fever and nearly died, remaining hospitalized for more
> than a year.
>
> Following the war, he embarked on a career as an impressionist and stand-up
> comedian, appearing in small clubs in Florida and Washington D.C. He married
> singer Adelaide Adams and took her professional last name as his own stage
> name. In 1954, his stand-up act, written with his boyhood friend Bill Dana,
> landed him a contestant spot on ARTHUR GODFREY'S TALENT SCOUTS, which he
> won. This led to scores of appearances on comedy and variety series such as
> THE STEVE ALLEN SHOW and Ed Sullivan's THE TOAST OF THE TOWN, and ultimately
> to a regular job on THE PERRY COMO SHOW. He also played in stock and in 1962
> starred with Anthony Perkins in the Broadway play HAROLD.
>
>
> Divorced and remarried (to dancer Dorothy Bracken), Adams in 1963 reunited
> with Bill Dana on THE BILL DANA SHOW, playing inept hotel detective Byron
> Glick, a forerunner to his most famous characterization. NBC placed Adams
> under contract and gave him the starring role in Mel Brooks's and Buck Henry's
> spy spoof GET SMART. As the bumbling yet intrepid secret agent Maxwell
> Smart, Adams was an instant success. With his alluring straight-woman
> partner Agent 99 (Barbara Feldon), Adams became a comic icon of the 1960s,
> popularizing dozens of catch-phrases that still resound today: "Would you
> believe?", "Missed it by THAT much!", "...and LOVING it!" and "Sorry about
> that, Chief."
>
> Adams reveled in the show and its popularity, and particularly enjoyed
> writing and directing several episodes. GET SMART ran for five seasons and
> brought Adams wealth, awards, and worldwide fame. At the same time, he
> continued to achieve recognition as one of the funniest and most popular
> stand-up comedians of his generation.
>
> Adams returned in a new series in 1971, THE PARTNERS, which, though slightly
> more serious than GET SMART, still had him playing a bumbling
> law-enforcement officer. This time he starred with Rupert Crosse, the two
> playing a pair of none-too-bright detectives. The show lasted one season.
> Except for the intriguing but unsuccessful DON ADAMS'S SCREEN TEST (a
> contest show in which Adams directed famous stars and amateurs in scenes
> from classic movies), he did not return to series television for fourteen
> years.
>
> Instead he guest-starred on sitcoms, variety shows, and occasional TV
> movies. He played Las Vegas showrooms and nightclubs, though he grew
> increasingly reluctant to perform before live audiences. With the
> distinctive voice of his on-screen persona, he had long been active in
> voice-over work. Even during the GET SMART period he had been popular among
> children as the voice of the animated TENNESSE TUXEDO, and later was even
> more popular in his title role as INSPECTOR GADGET.
>
> Divorced again, he married a third time in 1977 (to Judy Luciano). During
> this period, Adams starred in and directed a number of commercials, winning
> a CLIO Award for directing. In 1980, he reluctantly returned to the Maxwell
> Smart character in a feature film, THE NUDE BOMB, which he hated. He also
> brought the character briefly back to television in the 1989 TV movie GET
> SMART, AGAIN!
>
> In 1985, he returned to series television in a Canadian sitcom, CHECK IT
> OUT, in which he played the manager of a supermarket. The show was popular
> enough to run for three seasons on American TV, but it mainly provided a
> paycheck for Adams and a co-starring role for a pre-NYPD BLUE Gordon Clapp.
>
> In later years, he hoped for a chance at serious roles, of which he had done
> many in his early years in summer stock. But the opportunity never arrived.
> A role was actually written for him by his son-in-law for the revived ALFRED
> HITCHCOCK PRESENTS in 1986, but the producers feared he could not subsume
> his comedic persona, and the role went to Martin Landau.
>
> Instead, he returned to the role that had made him world famous, in a third
> revival of Maxwell Smart. The 1995 series version of GET SMART featured
> Adams as Smart, now promoted to Chief of the secret agency CONTROL. Barbara
> Feldon also returned as his wife and colleague, but instead of the couple
> who had made television history, the show focused on the bumbling spy
> efforts of their son Zach Smart. Only seven episodes aired before the new
> show was cancelled.
>
> Adams spent the remainder of his career doing commercials and voice work,
> mostly in new INSPECTOR GADGET productions. In 1999, he made a cameo voice
> appearance in the live-action INSPECTOR GADGET feature film starring Matthew
> Broderick as Gadget.
>
> Like his brother, the late comedian Dick Yarmy, Adams was an inveterate
> horse-player. His leisure time was largely spent either at racetracks or in
> card games at the Playboy Mansion, and with pals such as Hugh Hefner, James
> Caan, and Don Rickles. Divorced for the third time, he lived alone in a
> luxury apartment in Century City. He was a devoted history buff, and was an
> amateur expert on the lives of Abraham Lincoln and Adolf Hitler. He was a
> talented poet and painter and had at one time considered a career as an
> artist.
>
> His health declined in recent years with the onset of lymphoma, but took a
> precipitous turn for the worse following the death last year of his
> daughter, actress-casting director Cecily Adams. In recent weeks he had
> declined to continue medications or treatment for his ailments. Following
> his emergency hospitalization on September 24, he was unable to breathe on
> his own. As per his instructions, life-support systems were turned off
> Sunday night. Two of his former wives and three of his children, as well as
> other family members, were with him when he died.
>
> Adams is survived by six of his seven children: Daughters Carolyn Steele (of
> Pahoa, Hawaii), Christine Adams (of Elkridge, Maryland), Cathy Metchik (of
> Henderson, Nevada), [Paramount TV executive] Stacey Adams, and Beige Adams,
> and son Sean Adams (all of Los Angeles); by five of his seven grandchildren
> (another is expected in November); and by three great-grandchildren.
>
> There will be a private memorial service. Burial will be with Marine Corps
> honors at an undetermined location.
>
> Memorial donations may be made to the Motion Picture & Television Fund, MPTF
> Foundation,
> 22212 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 300, Woodland Hills CA 91364.

To jim and all the fans out there am very sorry to hear of don's death
i grew up with him watching all his work on tv and films . am 47 yrs
old. I also talked and met his daughter cecily adams at a vulkon star
trek convention here in orlando florida and we talked about her father
for a long time it was bitter sweet to meet her and to find out that
she died last year, i cried when i heard and she was very nice to talk
to and to hang out at her autograph table. she played quarks mom on
Deep space nine.
from mike gigliati from the USS HAVEN star trek club.
http://usshaven.net

Brian Watson

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 9:50:51 AM9/27/05
to

"mwestport" <mwes...@SPAMrcn.com> wrote in message
news:Xns96DE174A69C01m...@216.196.97.142...

> "Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in
> news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com:
>
>> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>>
>> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.
>>
>
>>
>
> My condolences, Mr. Beaver, to your Family and the rest of the Adams clan.

Seconded, thirded, or whatever .... from one guy on the UK side of the pond
who enjoyed Don Adams' work a lot in my most formative years, and frequently
since too.

--
Brian
"Anyway, if you have been, thanks for listening."


Corby Gilmore

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 12:09:34 PM9/27/05
to


One of my favorites was an episode in which Broderick Crawford played a
KAOS agent who was an old prospector. It was entitled "The Treasure of C.
Errol Madre".

--
Corby Gilmore
co...@ncf.ca

Louis Epstein

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 12:33:05 PM9/27/05
to
Jim Beaver <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:
:
: "Louis Epstein" <l...@main.put.com> wrote in message
: news:JMudnTHkL5d...@velocitywest.net...
:
:> Jim Beaver <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:
:>
:> : In later years, he hoped for a chance at serious roles, of which he had
:> done
:> : many in his early years in summer stock. But the opportunity never
:> arrived.
:> : A role was actually written for him by his son-in-law for the revived
:> ALFRED
:> : HITCHCOCK PRESENTS in 1986, but the producers feared he could not
:> subsume
:> : his comedic persona, and the role went to Martin Landau.
:>
:> Was that another son-in-law,Jim?
:
: Uh, well, no, I guess it wasn't another son-in-law.

(I thought you weren't his son-in-law until after 1986).

:>
:> I wish I could fish for a joke asking to repeat the part after
:> the first sentence...but sometimes bad news is beyond a Maxwell
:> Smart joke.
:
: I don't know about that. Someone just emailed me a line from Get Smart that
: I am certain Don would have liked as his epitaph -- I certainly heard him
: use it many times in real life:
:
: "When I die, I don't want a big fancy funeral. I just want a few close
: friends to get together and bring me back to life."
:
: Missed it by that much.

I don't suppose the emailer was sending a cryonics enrollment package?

: Jim Beaver

-=-=-
The World Trade Center towers MUST rise again,
at least as tall as before...or terror has triumphed.

Brad Ferguson

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 12:42:27 PM9/27/05
to
In article <dhbqru$s9l$1...@theodyn.ncf.ca>, Corby Gilmore
<ai...@FreeNet.Carleton.CA> wrote:


Something that's stuck with me for all these years wasn't an episode,
but a coming attraction. As with most shows during the time of "Get
Smart"'s original run, there would be a very short preview of the
following week's episode. For this particular one they had the usual
clips, with a voiceover by an announcer. Toward the end, the announcer
proclaimed, "and this episode was directed by Don Adams!" There was a
closeup of Don delivering a line, which was followed by a thick silence
for a couple of beats. Don looked annoyed and said, "Who says cut?"
Then he remembered. "Oh. I say cut." You could hear the crew
laughing.

I remember my father looking forward to the premiere of "Get Smart"
because he'd liked Don so much as the house detective a year or two
before in "The Bill Dana Show," which Don had stolen almost
effortlessly.

--
FREE JUDITH MILLER

Jim Beaver

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Sep 27, 2005, 2:54:37 PM9/27/05
to

"Louis Epstein" <l...@main.put.com> wrote in message
news:AqednTYPMIT...@velocitywest.net...

> Jim Beaver <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:
> :
> : "Louis Epstein" <l...@main.put.com> wrote in message
> : news:JMudnTHkL5d...@velocitywest.net...
> :
> :> Jim Beaver <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote:
> :>
> :> : In later years, he hoped for a chance at serious roles, of which he
> had
> :> done
> :> : many in his early years in summer stock. But the opportunity never
> :> arrived.
> :> : A role was actually written for him by his son-in-law for the revived
> :> ALFRED
> :> : HITCHCOCK PRESENTS in 1986, but the producers feared he could not
> :> subsume
> :> : his comedic persona, and the role went to Martin Landau.
> :>
> :> Was that another son-in-law,Jim?
> :
> : Uh, well, no, I guess it wasn't another son-in-law.
>
> (I thought you weren't his son-in-law until after 1986).

Ah. I hadn't thought of it like that. Let me rephrase, in a more
convoluted manner: It was I, who am but at the time was not, his
son-in-law. Actually, it's even more confusing: It was I, who was not at
the time, and am not at this time, but was during an intervening time, his
son-in-law. Oy.

Jim Beaver


Message has been deleted

Shirley

unread,
Sep 27, 2005, 5:06:12 PM9/27/05
to

"Jim Beaver" <jumb...@prodigy.spam> wrote in message
news:_yVZe.243$DY....@newssvr33.news.prodigy.com...

> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.


I am so sorry to hear of the passing of another tv icon.
He made us laugh and that we will always remember.
I went into the website about your wife...she was beautiful, talented and I
am sorry for your loss of both your wife and father-in-law.
Do you know if back in the late 60's or early 70's if Don Adams had a
vacation home or vacationed in Vermont? My husband and I met Don Adams at a
lake in Vermont. He said he was "The Don Adams"....actually gave us a ride
on the motor boat he had at the time. If it was not him it was his identical
twin or his stunt double. If it was not him it will still be a good
memory...
Shirley


Colonel Buckshot

unread,
Sep 28, 2005, 12:21:24 AM9/28/05
to
My deepest sympathies to Mr. Beaver and to the other members of Mr.
Adams' family.


Get Smart was my favorite childhood sitcom without question and it
holds up even after the passage of several decades because the humor
was so brilliant and multi-layered that a more mature viewer picks up
on subtleties lost to a 10 year old. The same probably could be said
of the Tennessee Tuxedo episodes, but it's been years since I've seen
one.

Buck Henry and Mel Brooks deserve credit for creating Maxwell Smart,
but Don deserves credit for bringing him to life and putting a
definitive stamp on it. It is very unfortunate that he became
typecast, because someone who can do comedy that well is usually a very
good actor who deserves opportunities to show the audience the full
range of their abilities.

My appreciation of Don Adams the man was strengthened with the recent
biography special. His personal life certainly was less than perfect,
but he seemed to be open and honest about that. It takes courage and
character to admit your faults, and I respected him for that.

Mr. Adams was a TV icon to me and many others, but he was also a father
and a grandfather whose family had to share him with the world which
certainly couldn't have been easy to do. To his family I say "Thank
you" for allowing the rest of us to have our lives brighted by this
talented man.

May God Bless his soul.

David Samuel Barr

unread,
Sep 28, 2005, 12:39:05 AM9/28/05
to
Jim Beaver wrote:
>
> My father-in-law, Don Adams, died last night. I was with him.
>
> Following is the obituary I wrote last night for the trade papers.


Sincerest condolences to you and your family, Jim, and compliments on
writing such an excellent obituary, especially under the circumstances.

Time to haul out my well-worn "Don Adams - Live?" LP again....

van...@gmail.com

unread,
Sep 28, 2005, 2:43:14 AM9/28/05