Skipper Frank Herman - Local
children's show personality who hosted CARTOON CAROUSEL and FOR KIDS
ONLY on KTLA-TV Channel 5 in Los Angeles in the 1950s and 1960s.
Dressed in a captain's hat, a blue blazer, and white slacks, Skipper
Frank offered a menu of cartoons, magic tricks and ventriloquism
courtesy of his wooden sidekick, Julius. Skipper Frank also starred
on MAGIC PARTY on Channel 11 from 1956 to 1963.
Frank Herman arrived
in the United States by way of Edmonton, Canada where he was a
well-know radio celebrity for five years after World War II.
Intrigued with the potential of the newly emerging television
industry, Herman left Canada for Los Angeles to seek his fortune.
Originally, entertainer Mel Blanc (voice of Bugs Bunny) got the nod
to become the star of the show CARTOON CAROUSEL, but when Blanc
demanded too much money, the part fell to newcomer Frank Herman.
prepare for his new role as kiddie show host, Herman fingered
through a wardrobe room and found the only jacket that seemed to
fit, a navy blue nautical blazer. Donning the yachting jacket and a
captain's hat, the character "Skipper" Frank Herman was born.
part of his duties as a children's show host, Skipper Frank often
traveled to supermarkets and other events to promote his show and
hawked a number of merchandise including Kellogg's Cornflakes under
the "Cartoon Carousel" banner.
After a successful run as a
children's show host, Herman left the kiddie show circuit in 1963 to
host a nighttime talk show in San Diego. The remainder of his career
was spent in cable television industry as manager for TelePrompter
and the New York advertising firm Foote, Cone & Belding.
In the 1970s, a bout with cancer left Frank almost totally deaf,
but despite his disability, he continued to perform magic shows for
children at schools and other venues.
Born November 16, 1916, in Poughkeepsie, New York, Frank Joseph
"Skipper Frank" Herman died January 4, 2000, of pneumonia at Scripps
Hospital in La Jolla, California. He was survived by his wife,
Gloria, four sons and seven grandchildren.
Besides his family, Frank's legacy included being one of the
founding member of the now famous Magic Castle in Hollywood.
TRIVIA NOTE: Early in his TV career, Skipper Frank reportedly had a dummy
named Ziggy. Unfortunately, it was stolen from his car while
performing at a supermarket event. Saddened, Skipper Frank made a
plea on the air for the return of his wooden sidekick, but it was
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