T.V. Legend Dick Clark passed away on Wednesday, April 18th, after suffering a massive heart attack. Clark was 82.
Clark was a breakout star after hosting “American Bandstand,” an afternoon dance show for teenagers, in 1957. Just some of the featured performances on the show included: Elvis Presley, Janis Joplin and the Jackson 5.
Later Clark formed his own production company and put out many popular shows that included the hidden camera series “TV’s Bloopers and Practical Jokes”. Clark also produced the game show “$25,000 Pyramid” and many TV award shows, including the Golden Globes.
Most notably, Clark will remembered for his New Years celebration that started in 1972. This is where, Clark hosted “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” for the first time, helping Americans countdown to midnight as the ball dropped in New York’s Times Square.
In 2004, Clark suffered a stroke that left him partially paralyzed and unable to speak, where Regis Philbin stood in for him the first year and later Clark passed the baton to “American Idol” host Ryan Seacrest.
After recovering, Clark made an annual appearance to address the audience.
Clark’s first time back in 2006, he had the same boyish spirit people had grown to know. Although he clearly struggled with his speech, sounding hoarse and sometimes indecipherable, he candidly addressed the audience, saying: “Last year I had a stroke. It left me in bad shape. I had to teach myself how to walk and talk again. It’s been a long, hard fight. My speech is not perfect but I’m getting there.” Noting, “I wouldn’t have missed this for the world.”
Clark is survived by his three children and his third wife, Keri Wigton, to whom he has been married since 1977.