Gary Collins, actor and longtime master of ceremonies for the Miss America Pageant, died Saturday in Biloxi, Mississippi at the age of 74.
Born April 30, 1938, in Venice, California, Collins joined the army, where he became a dee jay on the Armed Forces Radio. After completing his military service, he sought a career in acting, and landed a starring role in the 1965 sitcom The Wackiest Ship in the Army. From there, Collins continued to secure regular roles in television series such as Iron Horse, The Sixth Sense, and Born Free Collins also guest-starred on many television shows, including Perry Mason, The Virginian, Hawaii Five-O, The Six Million Dollar Man, Alf, The Love Boat, Charlie’s Angels, Friends, and JAG.
Collins was a six-time Emmy Award nominee, and won in 1983 for Outstanding Talk Show Host.
In the 1980s, Collins turned his focus to hosting–and from 1980 to 1988, he served as host of the television talk show Hour Magazine, a less-controversial show than his tabloid-focused counterparts. It was during this time that he also worked as the master of ceremonies at the Miss America Pageant.
[Photo Credit: Dave Edwards]
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