Rick Jason (Rick Jason)

Rick  Jason

Actor. He is best remembered for his role of ‘Lieutenant Gil Hanley’ in the World War II television series “Combat!” (1962 to 1967). Born Richard Jacobson in New York City, he was the only child of a stockbroker and well-to-do mother. As a child, he was a good student who proved to be popular with his classmates and teachers. After graduation from Rhodes School, his father bought him a seat on the NY Stock Exchange, but in 1943, he sold the seat and enlisted into the Army Air Force, serving two years (1943-45). After the war, he attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts on his GI Bill, and was soon placed in the play “now I Lay Me Down to Sleep” (1951), which earned him a Theater World Award. Offered contracts with four Hollywood Studios, he signed with Columbia Pictures, and was cast in “Sombrero” (1953). Columbia then asked him to play the lead in “The Saracen Blade” (1954), and additional contract offers followed. After a strong presentation in “The Wayward Bus” (1957), which earned him critical acclaim, he was deluged with offers. In 1960, he moved to television, playing the lead in “The Case of the Dangerous Robin,” a series about an insurance investigator. His next role, that of Lieutenant Hanley in the five-season run of “Combat” made him a household name (his role actually began as the unit’s Platoon Sergeant, but his character was quickly given a battlefield promotion to Second Lieutenant). After “Combat,” he returned to the theater, but continued to make films in Japan and Israel. In the 1970s and 1980s, he appeared in such television hits as Police Woman, Murder She Wrote, Wonder Woman, Airwolf, Fantasy Island, and Dallas. A talented actor, he was fluent in Spanish, French, Italian and Chinese, and played the guitar. He also enjoyed sculpting, painting, flying, hunting, fishing and photography. He was married five times, including once to Miss Germany, Uta Jutta, and his fifth wife, Cindy, was the longest, from 1983 to his death in 2000. After retiring from acting, he continued to remain active, doing voice-overs for commercials, and operating a large storage facility called The Wine Locker, where people could store their favorite beverages under optimal conditions. He published his autobiography, “Scrapbooks of My Mind: A Hollywood Autobiography” in July 2000. For unpublished reasons, he committed suicide at his home in Moorpark, California, and his body was cremated. He reportedly had no children.

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  • May, 21, 1923


  • October, 16, 2000


  • Hollywood Forever Cemetery
  • California
  • USA

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