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Albert Salmi
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    (March 11, 1928-April 22, 1990)
    Born in Brooklyn, New York
    Early student of Lee Strasberg's Actors Studio in New York City
    Following Army service during WWII, used the GI Bill to study at the Dramatic Workshop of the American Theater Wing
    Attained widespread acclaim as Bo Decker in the 1955 Broadway production of William Inge's, 'Bus Stop,' also performing in the off-Broadway touring production
    Also starred in Broadway's 'End As Man,' 'The Rainmaker,' 'The Good Woman of Setzuan,' 'Howie,' 'Once There Was a Russian,' and 'The Price'
    Perhaps best known as Fess Parker's sidekick, Yadkin, in the first season of Daniel Boone (1964-1965)
    Also co-starred as local investigator Pete Ritter in NBC's 'Petrocelli' (1974-1976)
    Acted in 'The Brothers Karamozov,' 'The Bravados' (1958), 'The Unforgiven' (1960), 'The Outrage' (1964), 'Lawman' (1971), 'Escape from the Planet of the Apes' (1971),' Viva Knievel!' (1977), 'Empire of the Ants' (1977), 'Love and Bullets' (1979), 'Caddyshack' (1980), 'Brubaker' (1980), 'Dragonslayer' (1981), 'I'm Dancing as Fast as I Can' (1982), and 'Hard to Hold' (1984).
    Also had memorable guest spots on 'The Virginian,' 'Have Gun - Will Travel,' 'Naked City,' 'The Investigators,' 'Combat!,' 'Stoney Burke,' 'Bonanza,' 'The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters,' 'Redigo,' 'The Big Valley,' 'The Legend of Jesse James,' 'Custer,' The Eleventh Hour,' 'Alfred Hitchcock Presents,' 'The Road West,' 'Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea,' 'Route 66,' 'Land of the Giants,' 'Night Gallery,' 'Kung Fu,' and 'Knight Rider'
    Died from a self inflicted gunshot, after first shooting dead his estranged second wife, Roberta, in their Spokane, Washington home (April 23, 1990)
    Subject of Sandra Grabman's biography, 'Spotlights & Shadows: The Albert Salmi Story' (2009)
    He is easily confused with fellow TV Western character actor Whit Bissell.
    His 40 year career on stage, television, and film is obscured by the gruesome nature of his and his wife's death.
    He turned down multiple film offers at his peak, giving into 'Actor's Studio' peer pressure that deemed Hollywood as 'low-grade,' illegitimate theater.
    His marriage to equally tragic child star Peggy Ann Garner fell apart after seven years, ending in divorce in 1963.
    He left Garner for Roberta Pollack Taper, herself the wife of a powerful California real estate developer thirty years her senior.
    The story was that Roberta came home to her husband, Mark, holding a pair of booties saying 'congratulations, honey!' He replied, 'congratulations to you, honey! My tubes are tied!' (they were promptly divorced before the birth of Salmi's child...)
    He turned down the role of Bo in the film version of 'Bus Stop,' opposite Marilyn Monroe, which he counted as his biggest professional mistake (it won an Oscar nomination for Don Murray).
    He left a very promising stint at Daniel Boone's sidekick after the Ed Ames 'Mingo' character began to gain traction with viewers (dubbed his second 'worst mistake').
    His unofficial 'third worst mistake' was uprooting himself from New York City to a comparably remote location in Spokane, Washington to please his second wife. Forced into unofficial retirement, he gradually descended into alcoholism, squandering most of their money in the process.
    He exhibited abusive tendencies toward his wife, reportedly beating her and threatening to kill her at least once. She soon after kicked him out and went through the motions to file for legal separation, even hiring security guards to monitor the house.
    The security guard protection existed as long as there was money in the bank. When her finances dried up, Salmi succeeded in getting into the house and shooting her to death (and allegedly then going into the den to shoot himself).
    He was a versatile character actor who excelled in virtually every genre.
    He was described as a good-natured, gentle family man (and an avid fisherman) for most of his life.
    His wife was allegedly abusive towards their daughters, particularly toward the daughter from his first marriage.
    He was honored by the National Board of Review as the Best Supporting Actor of 1958 for his work in 'The Brothers Karamazov' and 'The Bravados.'
    He was awarded a 1967 Western Heritage Award for his performance in an episode of Gunsmoke.
    He developed a cult following among Lost in Space fans for his brief stint as Capt. Alonso Tucker.
    He very often wore his hair long, resembling a Viking.
    One day he was Christmas shopping with his wife and Patricia Blair. A little kid came by, tugged his mother's skirt, and said 'look mommy, that lady's got a mustache!' (he reportedly laughed)
    He was good friends with 'Boone' co-star, Patricia Blair, who said 'I just loved him dearly. Its the invisible charisma - you can't sell it, you can't bottle it - he had it. He just seemed like he was his own worst enemy.'
    His descent into his unstable (probably treatable) condition is believed to have been fueled by the discovery of cancer in two different parts of his body.
    Throw in the fact that his youngest daughter was unmarried and pregnant, and that his wife had spent most of his retirement funds, making it difficult for him to help support her, and you have the ingredients for (at the very least) a nervous breakdown.
    In an even crueler twist of fate, the daughter he had with Peggy Ann Garner died a mere five years after he did (and 18 years after Garner).

Credit: BoyWiththeGreenHair

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