I suppose everyone has a hero or heroes they look up to. These days because of the Covid 19 pandemic, front line providers such as doctors, nurses, and medical personnel top my list. Of course we can’t forget police, firemen, and our military. Three forgotten heroes from my glory days are unassuming individuals named, Vince, Larry, and Dave.
Vince and Larry are crash test dummies from the 1980’s. Some folks will loudly proclaim,
“Those guys aren’t real!”
Advertising specialists Jim Ferguson and Joel Machak created Vince and Larry, while voice-actors Jack Burns and Lorenzo Music did all the talking. Early on, my kids thought the pair were human. This probably suited the Highway Safety Council just fine. Vince and Larry’s job was to get their message across to people of all ages, that wearing seat belts was the smart thing to do. It definitely worked with my two.
Some folks might question why I’d put two crash test dummies on my hero list. The answer is simple. This dynamic duo are responsible for saving thousands, if not millions of lives. Evidently I’m not the only one thinking so. Vince and Larry’s costumes are now in the Smithsonian Museum.
What can I say about “Super Dave” Osborne. While this man may not fit your stereotypical hero definition, the things he accomplished as a stuntman far exceed those of motorcycle jump expert, “Evel Knievel.”
“Super Dave” is the first person to sit inside a vehicle as it went through a car crusher and survive. I vividly remember that segment from Saturday Night Live. I doubt that the great magician “Houdini” could’ve pulled such off.
Dave rode a giant yo-yo off a cliff. He was run over by a freight train. “Super Dave” survived a bungycord jump gone awry when someone forgot to secure his cord. Perhaps the most dangerous stunt he attempted, was to ride a roller coaster at Magic Mountain in California. Dave experienced a bit of motion sickness afterwards.
I placed “Super Dave” Osborne on my hero list because he’s a champion in making people laugh, especially me. It’s said that laughter is the best medicine. Just how many years Dave added to people’s lives because of his humor is immeasurable? When feeling a bit blue, I go to YouTube and watch reruns of his antics. Sometimes that’s all it takes to cheer me up.
Tragically, the actor playing “Super Dave” Osborne recently passed away. Bob Einstein died of leukemia on January 2, 2019.
I wanted to add one more name to my super hero list, yet didn’t for obvious reasons. Everyone knows that,
“Mr. Bill is not real!”