Jerry Stiller, 'Seinfeld' star and '60s comedy legend, dies at 92


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Actor Jerry Stiller died from natural causes on Monday, but his life and legacy will continue to be honored every Dec. 23.

That scores of fans actually celebrate the fictional holiday of Festivus on that date is proof of how big a legacy the 92-year-old comedy veteran left on a younger generation through his role as Frank Costanza, the creator of the "Festival for the rest of us" on the popular sitcom, “Seinfeld.”


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Never took his shoes off.

Never stop short with his wife.

Airing of grievances at a holiday he created.

His attorney (Larry David) wore a cape.


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One of my favorite lines -

"How long does it take to get a bra? You ask me to get a pair of underwear I’m back in 5 seconds."


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Ben Stiller once told a story on The Craig Kilbourne Show about life on the road with his parents who were doing their act in the 70s. I remember sitting in my new apartment in Columbus on the floor with no furniture so it would have been early 1997 and pretty early in Ben’s career. Anyway, he said his parents used to play at a place in Warren, Ohio...which was interesting to me because I grew up in Warren and it was so out of the blue at 1:00am lol but he said his folks used to leave him in the care of this odd man who was an hermaphrodite; which got a big laugh and then he mentioned some other details.

I was probably one of very few in the country watching who knew what he was talking about. There was a famous Ohio theatrical producer name John Kenley and he was indeed a unisex person, or someone born with both male and female genitals; an hermaphrodite. Kenley created the Kenley Players and one of the 3-4 places they performed was the Packard Music Hall in Warren. Kenley is credited with being the originator of Equity Summer Stock Theater in the US. That being the concept of using well known TV and movie actors in theater productions in their summer offseason. The “Equity” part is simply an actor’s union - the equivalent of the SAG, but for theatre...which existed before Kenley’s productions. Kenkey used to get some for the biggest names in TV and movies in his heyday. I used to collect old football Ohio programs and would occasionally see Kenley Players programs on eBay, several with Stiller & Meara. Oh, and I read John Kenley used to spend his offseason in Miami, Florida as a woman named Joan Kenley - something pretty unusual for that time in US society.

I recalled seeing this site once so I’ll add it here, even though it’s off the topic. It lists all of Kenley‘s productions ever, many featuring Jerry Stiller.

Steel Valley FB

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Apparently they’re still sought after by collectors on eBay. This link being only an autographed photo from a Kenley show and likely being priced to coincide with Stiller’s death, but there are dozens of Kenley programs up for auction currently.