Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Thursday, February 11, 2016


William Gargan voiced P.I. Barry Craig for the NBC Radio series' 190 episodes (from 1951 to 1954) -- a role that he was more than qualified for.  Gargan himself had once been a private investigator (and had even been shot once on the job!).  The character of Barry Craig had gone through a few name changes while on the radio:  he was first named Barry Crane, then Barrie Craig, and -- finally -- the more familiar Barry Craig -- and somewhere aloong the line he was Barry Crain.  Craig was a worthy addition to the league of radio private detectives. His beat was New York City and his office was on the third floor of Madison Avenue's Mechantile Building.  Among the writers for the series were detective novelists Frank Kane and John Roebert,  I have no idea who wrote the episode linked below but there is a good chance it was written either by Roebert or Louis Vitters.

A move to television was not in the cards for Barry Craig.  A 1952 pilot starring Gargan and written and directed by Blake Edwards failed

William Gargan's acting career was cut short by throat cancer in 1960.  From that point on until his death he spoke with an artificial speech box and using esophageal speech.  With time and hard work, Gargan was able to speak clearly but could not project his voice, effectively ending his acting career.  He then became one of the leading spokepersons for the American Cancer Society, effectively promoting awareness of cancer and of esophageal speech until his death in 1979.  He was an inspiration for many cancer victims.  Gargan's courage, determination, and willingness to turn a terrible experience into a life lesson for so many makes him one of a few actors I truly admire.

This episode, from March 1, 1953, appears to also known as "Behold a Corpse."  It seems the producers and/or the publicity department gave different titles to some of the episodes.


1 comment:

  1. We were big fans of Barry Craig at our house. My father said he liked him because he got hit on the head and knocked out so often.