Six years after he was unceremoniously dropped from the Labor Day Marathon, the holiday still seems empty to his millions of fans without seeing Jerry Lewis perform his great fundraising efforts. Over more than 40 Labor Days, he brought in more than two billion dollars for Muscular Dystrophy.
I first met Jerry in 1953 when I worked for the Beverly Hills Citizen, then a daily afternoon newspaper. I was at a local deli with reps of the William Morris talent agency. Among the group was a quiet, polite young guy about my age who didn’t seem to have much to say throughout the informal lunch.
I didn’t recognize him, and was told later that day that Jerry was about to star in the first film with his new partner, Dean Martin. Now, after more than 60 years and his many successful performances on screen and stage, Jerry is in a new film. It’s “Max Rose”, about a retired jazz musician who must face life alone after his beloved wife dies.
Jerry, I wish you great success with your new venture. May you enjoy many, many more years of entertaining your millions of loyal fans!