R.I.P. Robert Clary, Corporal LeBeau on Hogan's Heroes, familiar face on daytime television
The Holocaust survivor spent over two years in a concentration camp before achieving a successful career in Hollywood.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Hogan's Heroes actor Robert Clary has died.
Clary was known for his role as Corporal LeBeau, one he played for six seasons on the World War II comedy sitcom. THR says the actor, who was "the last surviving memeber of the show's original principal cast," passed away Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2022.
The only living principal cast member from Hogan's Heroes is Kenneth Washington, who played Sergeant Richard Baker in the final season of the series.
Clary played one of the allied French prisoners of war on Hogan's Heroes. He was part of the sabotage unit working from inside the POW camp "Stalag 13."
He was born in Paris in 1926 and was the youngest of 14 children, according to THR. As a child, Clary enjoyed performing and singing. "One day when he was 16, he and his family were rounded up and sent to Auschwitz."
Clary was in the concentration camp for 31 months and sadly, was the only member of his captured family to leave.
Once freed from the camps, Clary went to LA to record for Capitol Records, according to THR. Shortly after, he was on a CBS variety show hosted by Ed Wynn, performing a French comedy skit.
Clary could be seen in films such as Ten Tall Men and Thief of Damascus before he became Corporal LeBeau on Hogan's Heroes. As far as his role on the show and his history, Clary felt there was a clear difference between the two.
"I had to explain that [Hogan's Heroes] was about prisoners of war in a stalag, not a concentration camp, and although I did not want to diminish what soldiers went through during their internments, it was like night and day from what people endured in concentration camps," he's quoted as saying in The Hollywood Reporter, from his 2001 memoir From the Holocaust to Hogan's Heroes.
After Hogan's Heroes ended, Clary could be seen as a familiar face on daytime television. He was in episodes of The Young and the Restless and General Hospital before playing Robert LeClair on Days of Our Lives, appearing in episodes across 15 years. In the early '90s, Clary continued on his soap opera path with his role as Pierre Jourdan on The Bold and the Beautiful.
Clary was 96.