Tiger Beat Spectacular - Spring 1970
Bobby! His Sister's Memories!
Meet Darlene, Bobby's older sister, who is a lovely
lady that has some secret stories to tell about Bobby - both from the
past and the present. Darlene lives in Maryland with her husband
and four children and they all are big fans of Bobby's! In this
super-exclusive story written especially for the Tiger Beat Spectacular
Magazine, Darlene tells you some of her wonderful memories from the
On July 20th, 1964, events were taking place approximately 3,000
miles apart that were soon to have a happy "beginning" for everyone
involved. On the East Coast of the United States I was joyfully engaged in giving
birth to my fourth child, a beautiful, though somewhat noisy baby boy. Previously,
my husband and I had agreed that if the baby was a boy he would be named Robert (little
Bobby). As soon as my husband determined that the baby and I were doing well he
placed a long distance phone call to my parents in Van Nuys, California giving them the
good news of little Bobby's arrival. They gave no hint of the exciting events that
were taking place a few short miles away in Hollywood.
Early the following morning the phone rang in my hospital room and I
was pleasantly surprised to hear my brother's voice at the other end of the line. He
sounded excited and the first thing he said was, "Hi, Darl, how are you feeling?
Couldn't you have waited just two more days to have little Bobby so that he could
have been born on my birthday? Well, that's alright because he must be my lucky
mascot; yesterday, on his birthday, I signed with ABC to do the Shindig Show. Since
he is my namesake and lucky mascot I want you to tell him for me that his college
education is going to be taken care of by me." Some months later Bobby became
little Bobby's Godfather.
HECTIC WEEKEND - A few
months before he signed for the Shindig Show, Bobby and his close friend, Sal Mineo, were
out here on the East Coast on business and were able to visit with us for a short, wild,
happy, hectic weekend. Somehow the local kids found out about their visit almost
before they arrived at our home. With kids standing in the front yard and the phone
ringing almost constantly we were sadly forced to put them up secretly at a local motel so
that they could get some sleep. Almost everywhere we visited in the local area
there were friendly groups of kids with cameras and autograph books waiting for us.
It was almost as though they knew where we were going before we did. Bobby and Sal
enjoyed signing autograph books and talking with the young people while we fretted about
the short time we were able to spend alone with them.
UNCLE BOBBY SINGS! -
On the night of Bobby's first appearance on the Shindig Show, my mother was visiting with
us from the West Coast. I find it impossible to describe the excitement we all felt
during that day and as we sat down around the T.V. set that evening. When the show
finally came on and Bobby started to sing I couldn't believe my eyes! There he
stood, so handsome and grown up. I had to keep reminding myself that this was my
baby brother and not a good looking stranger. The children kept pointing at the T.V.
set saying, "There's Uncle Bobby." I didn't miss a single Shindig show
during it's two year run.
The day I found out that Bobby seriously wanted to go into show
business he was visiting with us at our home. We lived in California at that
time. I had a girlfriend who was doing bit parts in movies and Bobby asked if I
would ask her how he could go about getting into show business. Bobby was
disappointed when my girlfriend was unable to come up with any helpful suggestions.
It was just a short time later that Bobby sang at a party and was heard by Sal Mineo, who
shortly thereafter signed him as his protege.
WROTE SCRIPT! - When
Bobby was small, one of his many projects was writing scripts of the then popular Dragnet
T.V. program. These scripts included the commercials. Bobby frequently read
his scripts to the family playing all the parts including the sound effects himself!
The hilarious results were enjoyed by all members of the family. On occasion Bobby
would enlist members of the family to play characters in his scripts with even funnier
results. I thought then that at his very young age he was displaying a lot of talent
When Bobby was selected for the part of Jeremy Bolt on "Here
Come The Brides" we were all so happy for him in as much as it would enable him to
display his acting ability. The whole family has really enjoyed watching "The
Brides." It seems that since Bobby has been appearing in the show, his
popularity has really risen. I get phone calls from kids asking about Bobby and if I
have any picture that I can give them. When I go into town to do my shopping, people
I don't even know stop me and say how much they enjoy watching Bobby on the
"Brides" and listening to him on his records.
THREE GROOVY BROTHERS!
- Last December, my girlfriend, Mary, and I flew out to California for a two week
visit. We really had a wonderful time. Bobby took us out to the set of
"Here Come The Brides" to watch them shoot some scenes. We met Robert
Brown who is more handsome off the screen than on, and is also one of the greatest people
to talk to. And David Soul is just as charming and cute as he could be. Now,
instead of having only one brother I have three! The whole cast and crew of
"The Brides" have a good time together while working. They laugh and kid
around together like they're one big happy family on a picnic.
Around noon the cast broke for lunch and Bobby took Mary and me to
the Yankee Pedlar for a delicious luncheon. We sat around for more than an hour just
gabbing about old times. Then we returned to the studio to watch more shooting.
One of the highlights of our entire trip occurred when Bobby took us
over to Joan Blondell's trailer dressing room for a personal introduction. We spent
almost thirty minutes thoroughly enchanted by her charm and wit.
"Clancey", Henry Beckman, kept us laughing till our sides hurt with his antics
and Irish brogue while during his brief quiet moments his warm personality was immediately
NOT MARRIED! - I had
paid little or no attention to the wild rumors about Bobby being married until it was
forcefully brought to my attention in my own family. My oldest daughter Debbie, when
confronted by these rumors by her classmates in junior high school, rejected the idea as
ridiculous. In spite of her denials her classmates persisted and she returned from
school that day in tears of anger and frustration. "These rumors have hurt
Bobby in spite of the fact that he has expressed that if and when he finds the right girl
he himself will tell everyone about it and I feel that I will be one of the first people
Bobby will probably never know how happy he has made me with his
many telephone calls. At Christmastime he mentioned, during one of his calls, that
he will be appearing at the Civic Center in Baltimore and he would love to visit with us
for the weekend. With the "Brides" and all his personal appearances we
don't get to see him as often as we would like.
I imagine that when Bobby visits with us he will get down on the
floor and romp with my children as he has done so many times before even though they are
no longer babies. Debbie, my eldest, is thirteen, Michael is eleven, Mary-Ann is
eight and little Bobby is five. Bobby usually brings gifts of stuffed animals and
assorted toys for the children. More than likely we will sit down to a game of
Monopoly or Scrabble and later in the evening we will sit and reminisce about when we were
young and our folks out there in California and how the show is coming along.
- Bobby and my husband share an abiding interest in flying. Bobby
hopes someday to study and take flying lessons in order to get his private
flying license. His interest in flying extends back to his younger
years when he decided to build a helicopter. That thing took up
almost the whole back yard. He had taken his bicycle apart and
used the chain, peddle and wheels for the mobile parts and then constructed
blades out of wood and cardboard. He was so disappointed when
his helicopter didn't get off the ground. He'd pedal that thing
as hard as he could and when he got tired of peddling, he'd get one
of his friends to take over. Fortunately he never became airborne,
after all he hadn't made a parachute to take along.