Red Skelton

  • Birth Name: Richard Bernard Skelton
  • Birth Place: Vincennes, Indiana, United States
  • Died: September 17, 1997
  • Profession: Actor, TV host, Composer, Comedian
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Fast Facts

  • Was so poor as a child that he once sang for pennies on the streets of his Indiana home town.
  • Quit school at 10 to join a traveling medicine show.
  • Always ended his TV show---which ran for two decades---and his radio show by saying, "Good night and may God bless."
  • Had a bridge that spans the Wabash River between Indiana and Illinois named after him in 1963.
  • His Freddie the Freeloader character adorns a U.S. stamp that was introduced in August 2009.
  • Composed thousands of songs and more than 60 symphonies over the course of his career.
  • Was a renowned oil painter of clowns and an expert at growing bonsai trees.
  • Was a Shriner and a Freemason.


  • 1962, Emmy — Outstanding Writing Achievement in Comedy: Nominee
  • 1963, Emmy — Outstanding Writing Achievement in Comedy: Nominee
  • 1978, Golden Globe — Cecil B. DeMille Award: Winner
  • 1965, Emmy — Outstanding Individual Achievements in Entertainment: Nominee
  • 1952, Emmy — Best Comedian or Comedienne: Winner
  • 1987, Screen Actors Guild Awards — Life Achievement Award: Winner
  • 1961, Emmy — Outstanding Writing Achievement in Comedy: Winner
  • 1959, Golden Globe — Television Achievement: Winner
  • 1957, Emmy — Best Single Performance by an Actor: Nominee


  • Lothian Toland Skelton — Wife
  • Ida Mae Skelton — Mother
  • Georgia Davis — Ex-wife
  • Richard Freeman Skelton — Son
  • Joseph Skelton — Father
  • Valentina Maris Alonzo — Daughter
  • Edna Marie Stilwell — Ex-wife
  • Paul Skelton — Brother

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