Gallagher, watermelon smashing comic, lifeless at 76


Comic Gallagher, finest identified for his watermelon-smashing comedy routine and plenty of widespread specials within the Eighties, died Friday morning, in accordance his supervisor Craig Marquardo. He was 76.

In response to a press release supplied to CNN by Marquardo, the comic died “after a brief well being battle” and “handed away surrounded by his household in Palm Springs, California.”

Gallagher, born Leo Gallagher, grew to become a family title within the early ’80s with a comedy particular titled “An Uncensored Night,” the primary comedy rise up particular ever to air on cable tv, in response to an obituary shared by Marquardo.

Gallagher’s most well-known bit concerned a hand-made sledgehammer he referred to as the “Sledge-O-Matic,” which he would use to smash meals on stage, spraying the viewers.

Comedian Gallagher circa 1970s.

“That was one thing else he favored to assert credit score for, which was bodily participating the viewers in that method,” the obituary stated.

Gallagher, a Fort Bragg, North Carolina native, earned a chemical engineering diploma from the College of South Florida earlier than shifting to Los Angeles and growing his comedy act at legendary venue The Comedy Retailer, positioned on the Sundown Strip, according to his biography on the website for Selak Entertainment, a reserving company.

Individuals started to take discover in 1975 when he carried out his model of prop comedy on Johnny Carson’s famed “The Tonight Present.”

TV was good to him and in 1978, he made an look on “The Mike Douglas Present” and the subsequent yr appeared on “The Merv Griffin Present.”

But it surely was his Showtime Eighties comedy specials that firmly cemented him in popular culture, and he would go on to do greater than a dozen for the community over 27 years.

He was additionally an early staple of MTV and Comedy Central.

“Whereas his counterparts went on to do sitcoms, host discuss reveals and star in motion pictures, Gallagher stayed on the street touring America for many years,” the obituary stated. “He was fairly certain he held a document for essentially the most rise up dates, by attrition alone.”

Gallagher toured steadily till the Covid-19 pandemic hit and used the break to spend time together with his son, Barnaby, and daughter Aimee, the latter of whom had appeared with him on his specials when she was a baby.

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