American Legend Dick Clark Dies
He was often referred to as “America’s oldest teenager,” and Rep. David Dreier, who was a close friend of Clark’s and dined with him 10 days before his death, told the media that he was “very, very healthy up until just the last week or so.”
He continued by saying, “It’s true that in 2004, Dick Clark suffered a very serious stroke, but that man has been fighting so hard to recover, and in fact, at dinner the other night he reminded me that he is the world’s oldest teenager, and he said that to me just a couple of weeks ago,” adding the two were “laughing so hard” that night.
Most famously known for his role as host on the popular “American Bandstand” and “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” television shows, Clark also created The American Music Awards, which served as a competitor to the Grammys, and hosted the successful game show Pyramid from 1973-1988, which won nine Emmy awards.
‘American Bandstand’ appeared on television in September 1959, premiering on ABC, and Clark hosted the show until its demise in 1989. He interviewed stars from Elvis Presley, The Beach Boys to The Doors and Buddy Holly. He soon became a star himself, known for his clean image and charismatic stage presence. To sum it up, “The man was big. He was the biggest thing in America at that time. He was bigger than the president!” according to Hank Ballard, the writer of ‘The Twist.’
Clark became a familiar face in homes across North America from 1972 to 2004, as he hosted the infamous ‘New Year’s Rockin’ Eve’ for those celebrating at home, or in New York’s Time’s Square, where the ceremonial dropping of the ball took place. In 2004, Clark suffered a stroke, and Ryan Seacrest stepped in as host, however, they shared hosting duties from 2006 to 2011.
Clark received the Peabody Award in 1999, and throughout his career, he won four Emmys and is also a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee.
New Year’s Eve will never be the same without Dick Clark’s smiling face, but the television world will always remember his everlasting contributions.
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