Wizard of Oz Munchkin Raabe dies

Raabe, who played the coroner of the Munchkin Country in the 1939 musical classic, passed away on Friday (09Apr10) at a medical facility in Orange Park, Florida.

The veteran star was admitted to hospital after reportedly collapsing at his retirement home.

Raabe was plucked from obscurity at the age of 23 to play the famous role in The Wizard of Oz, which saw him declare the the Wicked Witch of the East “really most sincerely dead”.

After his appearance in the movie, he served in the Civil Air Patrol during World War II and worked as a spokesperson for American food company Oscar Mayer.

He also published a notable autobiography, titled Memories of a Munchkin: An Illustrated Walk Down the Yellow Brick Road, and appeared at numerous Wizard of Oz conventions.